Fredric Jameson indulges a view of Hegel that has been challenged for some time (LRB, 10 September). It assumes that Hegel sees Vorstellung (‘picture-thinking’, or ‘representation’) as in need of supersession by a more adequate mode known as ‘philosophy’. In fact he sees it as a necessary moment – a recognition by the self of its relation to material others – by which all genuine thinking proceeds. As for the ‘end of art’ specifically, Hegel is not trying to establish a ‘philosophy no longer obliged to rely on picture-thinking for its solutions’. The thesis describes a central feature of modernity for Hegel: namely, that representation reveals itself as not exhausting the possibilities of thought, but this does not mean that thought can do without representation. Philosophy’s task is to comprehend that difference, not to abolish it.
|Number of pages||22|
|Journal||London Review of Books|
|Publication status||Published - Sept 10 2015|