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Stephen Houlgate

The focus of my current work is Hegel's Science of Logic. In 2021 I published a comprehensive study of the "doctrine of being" in the Logic, which examines in detail Hegel's account of quality, quantity and measure. In the course of the book -- entitled Hegel on Being (Bloomsbury) (dated 2022) -- I discuss the project of Hegel's logic and its relation to his phenomenology, as well as to pre-Kantian metaphysics and Kant's critical philosophy. I also provide an extensive discussion of Hegel's account of differential calculus and of Kant's Second Antinomy (in the Critique of Pure Reason), and an original comparison of Hegel and Frege on the topic of number. The book overlaps in part with my earlier work, The Opening of Hegel's Logic (2006), but it examines the whole of the doctrine of being (rather than just the first two chapters of the section on quality), and it contains new material on, among other things, absolute method (at the end of the Logic), Hegel's critique of Kant, and Robert Pippin's interpretation of Hegel. My next project is a book on the "doctrine of essence" in the Logic.

My interpretation of Hegel's logic and his philosophy more generally continues to be guided by his claim that speculative thought develops immanently and without systematic presuppositions. I thus contest Heidegger's assertion that Hegel thinks ‘in accordance with a predetermined idea of being’ (an assertion endorsed by Derrida and Deleuze, amongst others). Indeed, part of my work is intended to show that many post-Hegelian philosophers seriously misunderstand the Hegel from which they seek to distance themselves. However, I am also interested in the often overlooked similarities between Hegel, Heidegger and Derrida, in particular regarding the deconstruction of the idea of ‘essence’ or ‘ground’ (a deconstruction carried out by Hegel in the logic of essence). Beyond the Logic, I work on Hegel's political philosophy, aesthetics and philosophy of religion; and beyond Hegel, I am especially interested in the thought of Spinoza, Kant, and Nietzsche, and in the theory of tragedy from Aristotle to the present.

Selected Publications
  • Hegel, Nietzsche and the Criticism of Metaphysics (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986).
  • An Introduction to Hegel. Freedom, Truth and History (1991), 2nd edition (Oxford: Blackwell, 2005).
  • The Opening of Hegel's Logic. From Being to Infinity (West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, 2006).
  • ed. Hegel and the Arts (Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press, 2007).
  • ed. (with M. Baur), A Companion to Hegel (Oxford: Blackwell, 2011).
  • Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit. A Reader's Guide (London: Bloomsbury, 2013).
  • Hegel on Being, 2 vols. (London: Bloomsbury, 2022).
  • ‘Kant, Nietzsche and the “Thing in Itself”’, Nietzsche-Studien 22 (1993): 115-57.
  • 'The Unity of Theoretical and Practical Spirit in Hegel's Concept of Freedom', in The Review of Metaphysics 48, 4 (1995): 859-81.
  • ‘Necessity and Contingency in Hegel’s Science of Logic’, The Owl of Minerva 27:1 (1995): 33-44.
  • ‘Hegel, Derrida and Restricted Economy: The Case of Mechanical Memory’, Journal of the History of Philosophy 34, 1 (1996): 79-93.
  • 'Hegel and the "End" of Art', in The Owl of Minerva 29, 1 (1997): 1-21.
  • ‘Hegel's Critique of Foundationalism in the “Doctrine of Essence”’, in German Philosophy since Kant, ed. A. O'Hear (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), 25-45.
  • ‘Schelling's Critique of Hegel's Science of Logic’, The Review of Metaphysics 53, 1 (1999): 99-128.
  • ‘Substance, Causality, and the Question of Method in Hegel's Science of Logic’, in The Reception of Kant's Critical Philosophy: Fichte, Schelling and Hegel, ed. S. Sedgwick (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000), 232-52

  • 'Hegel and the Art of Painting', in Hegel and Aesthetics, ed. W. Maker (Albany: SUNY Press, 2000), 61-82.

  • 'Hegel, Rawls and the Rational State', in Beyond Liberalism and Communitarianism: Studies in Hegel's Philosophy of Right, ed. R. Williams (Albany: SUNY Press, 2001), 249-73.
  • 'Religion, Morality and Forgiveness in Hegel's Philosophy of Religion', in Philosophy and Religion in German Idealism, eds. E.-O. Onnasch and P. Cruysberghs (Dordrecht: Kluwer, 2004), 81-110.
  • 'Why Hegel's Concept is not the Essence of Things', in Hegel's Theory of the Subject, ed. D. Gray Carlson (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2005), 19-29.
  • 'Thought and Experience in Hegel and McDowell', European Journal of Philosophy 14, 2 (2006): 242-61.
  • 'Phenomenology and De Re Interpretation: A Critique of Brandom's Reading of Hegel", Bulletin of the Hegel Society of Great Britain 57/58 (2008): 30-47
  • 'Action, Right and Morality in Hegel's Philosophy of Right', in Hegel on Action, eds. A. Laitinen and C. Sandis (Basingtoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010), 155-75.
  • 'Essence, Reflexion and Immediacy in Hegel's Science of Logic', in A Companion to Hegel, ed. S. Houlgate and M. Baur (Oxford: Blackwell, 2013), 139-58.
  • 'Right and Trust in Hegel's Philosophy of Right', in German Idealism Today, ed. M. Gabriel and A.M. Rasmussen (Berlin: de Gruyter, 2017), 121-33.
  • 'Hegel, Danto and the "End of Art"', in The Impact of Idealism, eds. N. Boyle and L. Disley, 4 vols (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013): vol. 3, ed. C. Jamme and I. Cooper, 264-92.
  • 'Is Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit an Essay in Transcendental Argument?', in The Transcendental Turn, eds. S. Gardner and M. Grist (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015), 173-94.
  • 'Glaube, Liebe und Verzeihung: Hegel und die Religion', Hegel-Studien 49 (2015): 13-38.
  • 'Hegel, McDowell and Perceptual Experience: A Response to McDowell', in Hegel's Philosophical Psychology, ed. S. Herrmann-Sinai and L. Ziglioli (London: Routledge, 2017), 57-73.
  • 'Property, Use and Value in Hegel's Philosophy of Right', in Hegel's Elements of the Philosophy of Right. A Critical Guide, ed. D. James (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017), 37-57.
  • '[Hegel on] Architecture', in G.W.F. Hegel: Vorlesungen über die Ästhetik, ed. B. Sandkaulen (Berlin: de Gruyter, 2018), 151-68.
  • 'Hegel's Idea of the State', in Hegel's Philosophy of Spirit. A Critical Guide, ed. M. Bykova (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019), 186-204.
  • 'Hegel and Goethe's Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship', in Goethe's Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship and Philosophy, ed. S.V. Eldridge and A. Speight (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2020), 186-213.
  • 'Essence in Hegel's Encyclopedia and Science of Logic: The Problem of Form', in Hegel's Encyclopedia of the Philosophical Sciences. A Critical Guide, ed. S. Stein and J. Wretzel (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2021), 46-67.
  • 'Civil Society and its Discontents: Hegel and the Problem of Poverty', in Hegel's Philosophy of Right. Critical Perspectives on Freedom and History, ed. D. Moyar, K. Padgett Walsh and S. Rand (London: Routledge, 2023), 269-88.

Stephen Houlgate c.v. 2023


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Hegel's Science of Logic

Kant's Critique of Pure Reason