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The Genesis of Neo-Kantianism, 1796-1880$
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Frederick C. Beiser

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198722205

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198722205.001.0001

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Friedrich Albert Lange, Poet and Materialist Manqué

Friedrich Albert Lange, Poet and Materialist Manqué

(p.356) 9 Friedrich Albert Lange, Poet and Materialist Manqué
The Genesis of Neo-Kantianism, 1796-1880

Frederick C. Beiser

Oxford University Press

Chapter 9 examines the early philosophical development of Friedrich Albert Lange. It discusses in detail the genesis and content of his Geschichte des Materialismus, which was a decisive work in the formation of neo-Kantianism. I argue that though Lange’s interpretation of Kant is largely psychologistic, it also contains a normative component decisive for later neo-Kantianism. I focus on Lange’s implicit sympathy with materialism-its political agenda, its nominalism and mechanism-as well as his critique of materialism and the motivation for his neo-Kantianism. Lange, like Helmholtz, is shown to be a crucial figure in aligning neo-Kantianism with the natural sciences.

Keywords:   materialism, materialism controversy, nominalism, mechanism, noumenal, phenomenal, norms

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