Idealism


Idealism
   Friedrich Engels asserted that the great divide in philosophy is between the schools of idealism and materialism, that is those who regard mind as having primacy over nature, and those who regard nature as having primacy over mind. According to philosophical idealists the only things that fully exist are minds and their contents, and the material world does not exist independently of minds. For example, one idealist argument is that to be is to be perceived or to be a perceiver. Idealist philosophy, and that of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel in particular, dominated German philosophical thinking for much of the 19th century, and had a profound effect on Karl Marx. Marx counted himself a disciple of Hegel while at university, and much of his early writing, such as Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right (1843), Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right: Introduction (1844), Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts (1844), The Holy Family (1844), Theses on Feuerbach (1845), The German Ideology (1846) and The Poverty of Philosophy (1847) contained a critique of idealism and a working out of his own position in relation to idealism.
   To give an example of Marx’s divergence from Hegel, the latter understands history as the development of the idea of freedom, with ideas, thought, consciousness or, as Hegel often puts it, Geist, giving history meaning, purpose and direction. For Hegel it is Geist or mind, the ideal realm, that is the source of the creative impulse or driving force in the world. According to Marx, this approach is fundamentally wrong and ends up imposing abstract concepts and categories on the world. The starting point is the material world and in particular human activity from which ideas and consciousness are derived. Influenced by the critique of Hegelianism provided by Ludwig Feuerbach, Marx sees Hegel as having mystified reality by inverting the real relations between things, for example portraying man as the creation of God, when in fact, according to Feuerbach and Marx, God is the creation of man. On history, Marx develops his theory of historical materialism, or as he referred to it, his materialist conception of history, emphasizing material factors in the development of history, particularly human activity and production.

Historical dictionary of Marxism. . 2014.

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  • Idealism — • The characteristic of those who regard the ideas of truth and right, goodness and beauty, as standards and directive forces Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Idealism     Idealism …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • idealism — IDEALÍSM s.n. 1. Orientare în filozofie, opusă materialismului, care consideră spiritul, conştiinţa, gândirea ca factor primordial, iar materia, natura, existenţa ca factor secund, derivat. ♢ Idealism obiectiv = idealism care concepe factorul… …   Dicționar Român

  • Idealism — Idealism …   Википедия

  • idealism —    Idealism about something in philosophy is the doctrine that it is ideal , that is, mind dependent. There are three main forms of idealism: (1) subjective idealism, which holds that what we think of as physical things exist only because they… …   Christian Philosophy

  • Idealism — Album par Digitalism Sortie Le 11 juin 2007 Durée 51:44 Genre Électronique Label Kitsuné Music Idealism est le premier al …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Idealism — I*de al*ism, n. [Cf. F. id[ e]alisme.] 1. The quality or state of being ideal. [1913 Webster] 2. Conception of the ideal; imagery. [1913 Webster] 3. (Philos.) The system or theory that denies the existence of material bodies, and teaches that we… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • idealism — index casuistry Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • idealism — (n.) 1796, in the abstract sense, originally belief that reality is made up only of ideas, from IDEAL (Cf. ideal) (adj.) + ISM (Cf. ism); on model of Fr. idéalisme. Meaning representing things in an ideal form is from 1829 …   Etymology dictionary

  • idealism — ► NOUN 1) the practice of forming or pursuing ideals, especially unrealistically. 2) (in art or literature) the representation of things in ideal form. DERIVATIVES idealist noun idealistic adjective idealistically adverb …   English terms dictionary

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  • Idealism — The 20th century British scientist Sir James Jeans wrote that the Universe begins to look more like a great thought than like a great machine This article is about the philosophical notion of idealism. For other uses, see Idealism… …   Wikipedia