Hegel and the Human Spirit: A Translation of the Jena Lectures on the Pilosophy of Spirit (1805-6) with commentary


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On October 13, 1806, Jena fell to Napoleon’s army. Hegel saw the great man himself, history focused to a single point, “this world-soul … on horseback.” Just a few days before, Hegel had sent the first half of his Phenomenology of Spirit to his friend Niethammer in Bamberg, who was to relay the manuscript to the publisher. Despite Hegel’s enthusiasm for Napoleon, there was considerable danger. A few days later, Hegel fled his house and the city, carrying the last pages of the Phenomenology with him. Tradition has it that he finished them amidst the sounds of the battle. . .

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