‘Hegel In the Future, Hegel On the Future’ by Slavoj Žižek

Problemi International, No. 4, 2020 (Edited by Mladen Dolar).


Hegel is the philosopher most open to the future precisely because he explicitly prohibits any project of how our future should look—as he says towards the end of the “Preface” to his Philosophy of Right, like the owl of Minerva, which takes off at dusk, philosophy can only paint “grey in grey,” i.e., it only translates into a “grey” (lifeless) conceptual scheme a form of life which has already reached its peak and entered its decline (is becoming “grey” itself). Hegel’s basic axiom is not the teleological premise that, no matter how terrible an event is, at the end it will turn out to be a subordinated moment that contributes to the overall harmony; his axiom is that no matter how well-planned and well-meant an idea or a project is, it will somehow go wrong.

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