原创翻译:龙腾网 http://www.ltaaa.com 翻译:yzy86 转载请注明出处



Nationalist politics continue to gain support across the European continent, from the UK to Italy, France, Hungary and Poland. Meanwhile, the concept of “Europe” has become a rallying cry for those who want to resist what they see as a constraining, inadequate or conservative vision for the future.


Whatever else such a political picture may call to mind, it’s also a descxtion of the state of philosophy across Europe in the early 19th century. During the 1830s and 1840s, nationalism and Europeanism stood for two sides in a struggle over the identity of philosophy itself. For the nationalists, Europe was an insult to be resisted. But for others, it came to represent a positive ideal for transnational collaboration and communication. And these debates still resonate in discussions of Europe today.


Yet, by 1834, this nationalist model for different communities of thought had come under attack, for instance by Joseph Willm, an Alsatian philosopher stuck between the French and German traditions. He lamented in an essay on “The Nationality of Philosophies” that these national stereotypes stood in the way of the production of good philosophy. He wrote: “Never has there been less of a European philosophy.”


A ‘continental’ philosophy


Willm went on to bemoan the lack of a common language that had served as the glue between intellectuals from around the continent in previous eras. It was this lack of a European philosophy, he continued, that meant: “The more national a philosophy, the narrower, more incomplete and thus further from the truth it is.”


But he saw hope in the blossoming relationship of two of the most celebrated and politically powerful philosophers of the period, the Frenchman Victor Cousin and German Friedrich Schelling. They corresponded on the possibility of a European rapprochement, one that would intellectually reproduce the kind of international dominance that, 20 years earlier, Napoleon had attempted to create through military might.


Similar ideas emerged during the 1840s among left-wing radicals looking for international co-operation as a means to prepare for a coming revolution – which eventually erupted in 1848 across the continent.



In this vein, Louis Blanc, a French radical journalist who was to go on to become a member of the government of France’s Third Republic, wrote a treatise in 1843 arguing for an intellectual alliance between radical thinkers in France and Germany. Arnold Ruge, a former collaborator of the philosopher Karl Marx, responded to this treatise with another pamphlet renewing the call for European collaborations to bring about a revolution. Similar positive uses of the concept of Europe emerged among Czech philosophers, such as Bernard Bolzano, Ignác Hanuš and Augustin Smetana.


Retreating back to national stereotypes


Philosophers throughout this period sometimes represented themselves as French or British, or as European. And sometimes, they ambivalently flitted between the two and thought of themselves as both. For instance, in 1833, Cousin had an enthusiasm for Europe, encapsulated in his claim that:
There is nothing to fear from contact with philosophical schools that flourish in other parts of this great European family.

In the end, the nationalism of the early 19th century didn’t just define the self-image of many a philosopher of a bygone era, but continues to determine how we think today about the geopolitics of thought. In particular, it shapes our collective failure to understand the ways in which our ideas and thinking are shaped by a European heritage. What we think and how we think it are not only determined by nationalist stereotypes. They also come by way of shared ideals and practices born out of a common European past that has gone on to shape the politics and institutions of today’s Europe.

到头来,十九世纪初的民族主义不仅定义了一个已经过去的时代中众多哲学家的自我形象,而且还继续决定着今天的我们对思想领域地缘政治的看法。特别是,它招致了我们在理解欧洲传统对我们理念和思维的塑造方式时的集体失败。我们之所想以及我们的思维方式 不仅取决于民族主义者的刻板印象。其由来也是通过共同的理想和做派,而这些理想和做派脱胎于一个共同的欧洲的过去,后者继续塑造着当今欧洲的政治和体制。