Hegel's Contradiction in Human History Essay

Hegel's Contradiction in Human History Essay

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Human beings have been struggling to learn the meaning of life since the first day. Ideologies are born as human’s interpretation of the world and belief system, also an endeavor to seek the truth of human nature. Ideologies emerge throughout the periods of great changes: the Enlightenment, the English “Glorious” Revolution, the American Revolution, etc. They have become the motivations, the standards, and the roots to modern political systems. Their roots are the philosophies developed by famous philosophers throughout the time. However, as each ideology is developed, its own contradiction also grows, takes place in the realm of actions. This, in turn, shows contradiction as human nature.
Everything changes over time, and there is no moment when things stop changing to a different state, or a completely different thing. Heraclitus, a pre-Socratic Greek philosopher, states firmly: “There is nothing permanent except change.” Heraclitus’s works have influenced later philosophers and thinkers, including Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, a German philosopher of the late 18th and early 19th century. In order to define “contradiction”, I found it is understandable to use Hegel’s principle of non-contradiction, which has been studied for a long time. As Horst Althaus says in his Hegel: An Intellectual Biography, “If it is true, as Hegel says, that ‘all things are in themselves contradictory’, then the principle of non-contradiction is itself logically contradicted, and the sublation of contradiction as a logical operation becomes in turn a contradiction of the contradicted contradiction or a case of double negation.” (Althaus, 131) Thus, to Hegel, the nature of everything is contradiction. This, to me, includes human beings. The nature o...


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...es place over time, alternate key events, and transfers contradictory ideas. Contradiction in thoughts and actions of revolutionary leaders makes the historical events and their ideologies sometimes hard to be determined. It depends on each person to decide whether one thing is right for them. However, since human natures include contradiction, the world would keep changing over time.







Works Cited

Adams, John. Letter to Abigail Adams. 14 Apr. 1776. The Liz Library: Women's law and research
Althaus, Horst. Hegel: an Intellectual Biography. Malden, MA: Polity, 2000. Print.
Carswell, John. The Descent on England; a Study of the English Revolution of 1688 and Its European Background. New York: John Day, 1969. Print.
Wood, Gordon S. The Radicalism of the American Revolution. New York: Knopf, 1992. Print.

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