Contingency, Pure ContingencyWithout Any Further Determination: Modal Categories in Hegelian Logic

Эдриан Джонстон. Профессор, факультет философии, Университет Нью-Мексико. Адрес: 1 University of New Mexico, 87131 Albuquerque, NM, USA. Email: aojohns@unm.edu
Ключевые слова: Hegel’s logic; contingency; possibility; necessity; modalities
Beginning during G.W. F. Hegel’s own lifetime, two interlinked unsympathetic portraits of Hegel take shape and become enduring refrains in his critics’ complaints. According to the first of these, the Hegelian philosophical system posits a foundational teleological necessity that rigidly determines the constitution of both natural and human realities. The second critical portrayal of Hegel charges him with an ideologically pernicious Panglossianism dressing up a miserably conservative/reactionary status quo as the highest possible sociohistorical realization of Reason itself. Taken together, these two connected criticisms amount to treating Hegelian Wissenschaft as a post-Kantian version of Leibniz’s theosophy, with the former, purportedly like the latter, appealing to a necessary teleology supposedly guaranteeing the actualization of “the best of all possible worlds.” From the late-period F. W. J. Schelling and Rudolf Haym through today, countless voices past and present have repeated these anti-Hegelian allegations. The goal of the paper, simply stated, is to discredit thoroughly both of these pictures of Hegel’s philosophy. These two entwined lines of criticism ultimately rest upon the imputation to Hegel of a certain arrangement of modal categories in which possibility has priority over actuality, and necessity dictates the transition from the possible to the actual. Through a close reading of Hegel’s core doctrine of modal categories as definitively delineated in his mature Logic, the author shows that the depiction of Hegel as a neo-Leibnizian is an intellectually bankrupt, one-hundred-eighty-degree inversion of the truth.
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