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Willem deVries — Hegel’s Dialectic of Teleology
Kant revived discussion of teleology in modern philosophy, but he construed all teleology according to one model, which I call the Intentional Model of teleology. Kant denied teleological judgments (and, perforce, teleological explanations) objective status; they could have only the heuristic status of a regulative ideal. Hegel disagrees both with Kant’s assessment of the status of teleological judgments and with his analysis. Hegel does countenance the usefulness of the Intentional Model for judgments about the teleology involved in human agency and artifacts, but argues that it actually presupposes a more fundamental form of teleology, which I call the Functional Model. That is, the Intentional Model presupposes that there are some things in the world that are directly responsive to purposes without taking a detour through beliefs and desires. Hegel thus is better able to take account of organisms than Kant. Ultimately, Hegel argues, teleology is a matter of self-realizing objects and processes: organisms and, in the end, the world itself.

Nov 26, 2021 02:30 PM in Universal Time UTC

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