Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit

This course will provide an introduction to Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit, with a central focus on the idea of spirit. We will see how Hegel takes spirit to have come to be realized in ‘absolute knowledge’.

There are currently three English translations available, by:

Pinkard and Inwood are preferable to Miller, but both are expensive (I will be using a draft version of Pinkard’s translation in the course). I will be providing a 36 page course pack, containing all the extracts from the text which I will be discussing, so there is no need to have your own copy of the text, unless you are very keen! I will be using the now standard method of paragraph referencing, which works for all three translations.

It would be useful for participants to have either of the following:

(I have a slight preference for the Stern.)

Course outline, by week:

  1. Hegel’s project in the Phenomenology of Spirit
  2. The problem of consciousness (Introduction, ¶¶73-89)
  3. The concept of spirit (IV, ¶¶166-177)
  4. The master/slave dialectic (IV§A, ¶¶178-196)
  5. The development of spirit (i): religious alienation (IV§B to V§B)
  6. The development of spirit (ii): from antiquity to modernity (V§B, ¶¶349-357) and VI
  7. The culmination of spirit (i): the community of forgiveness (VI§Cc, ¶¶659-671)
  8. Absolute spirit: religion (VII§§A-B, ¶¶672-684)
  9. The culmination of spirit (ii): manifest religion (VII§C, ¶¶748-787)
  10. Absolute Knowledge (VIII, ¶¶788-808) and the Preface (¶¶1-72)