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Anthropomorphismus [II]

VII. Die Ausweitung des Begriffs im 19. Jahrhundert

Zurück zum Heft: Archiv für Begriffsgeschichte. Band 50
DOI: 10.28937/9783787336746_7
EUR 16,90

In general, »anthropomorphism« denotes the humanization of something that is not human itself (e.g. inanimate nature, animals, or God). The first part of thecontribution (cf. AfB 49, 2007) follows the history of this concept from its origins in classical antiquity up to Kant. This second part examines the continuing conceptual history in the 19th and 20th century, commencing from German Idealism and ending with »the end of Man« proclaimed by Foucault and Lyotard. Characteristic of the anthropomorphism discourse of the 19th century is what could be called »Critique of Concrete Reason«: Reason in its concrete manifestation is supposed to be perceived and explicated as human. It follows that every activity of Reason generates anthropomorphisms. In the 20th century, this equation ofReason and Man is criticized (e. g. by Husserl). On the other hand, the origin of humanization, Man itself, becomes the focus of anthropology and anthropologycritique. In a well understood sense, Man itself can be seen as an anthropomorphism, namely as the result of the self-humanization of a being that continuallysearches for its own essence.