Hegel, Islam, and Liberalism: Religion and the Shape of World History

Lynch, T. (2020) Hegel, Islam, and Liberalism: Religion and the Shape of World History. Philosophy & Social Criticism, 47 (2). pp. 225-240. ISSN 0191-4537

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Hegel’s philosophy is in tension with liberalism, containing both liberalizing tendencies and rejecting liberal norms. I explore this tension by investigating the relationship between religion, fanaticism, and world history in Hegel’s discussion of Islam. Drawing on recent work that considers Hegel’s treatment of race and world history, I show that he views Islam as a form of fanaticism that is antithetical to Christian Europe. This rejection of Islam stands in contrast to his treatment of the French Revolution, which is a fanaticism that can be incorporated into world history. I conclude that Hegel does not provide resources for narrating a history of a more inclusive Europe, but that interrogating his philosophy offers strategies for thinking askew the liberal “problem-space” and reconsidering identities formed in opposition to the Islamic fanatic. Such an interrogation reveals the assumptions at work in contemporary debates about the liberalization of Islam.

Publication Type: Articles
Uncontrolled Keywords: fanaticism, Hegel, Islam, liberalism, religion, world history, Philosophy, Sociology and Political Science
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
Divisions: Academic Areas > Institute of Arts and Humanities > Theology, Philosophy and Religion
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Tommy Lynch
Date Deposited: 16 Jan 2020 10:20
Last Modified: 29 Mar 2021 10:26
URI: https://eprints.chi.ac.uk/id/eprint/5019

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