In this provocative work, John McCumber asks us to understand Hegel’s system as a new approach to linguistic communication. Hegel, he argues, is concerned with building community and mutual comprehension rather than with completing metaphysics or developing historical critique. According to McCumber’s radial interpretation, Hegel constructs a complex ideal of how we should use certain words. This ideal philosophical vocabulary is flexible and open to revision, and is constructed according to principles available at all time and all places; it is responsive to, but not dictated by, the shared language of cultured discourse whose concepts it attempts to refine and universalize.
John McCumber, The Company of Words: Hegel, Language, and Systematic Philosophy, (Northwestern University Press, 1993).
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