Guest lecture "Bürgerliche Gesellschaft, Religion und Staat bei Hegel und Marx" by Andreas Arndt, January 25th, 2017

In his lecture the longstanding chairman of the International Hegel-Society (Internationale Hegel-Gesellschaft) and Professor of Philosophy at Humboldt Universität (Berlin) elaborated on the connections between Hegel and Marx. Starting from Hegel’s central motif of a history of freedom it was shown that in Hegel’s philosophy there never is a one-to-one transmission from the dialectical method in the sense of the absolute idea of the Hegelian logic to the context of Realphilosophie. Despite the misjudgement of the difference between logic and Realphilosophie by Marx, his programme can be understood as a reformulation of the philosophy of the objective spirit according to Arndt. In this context Marx examines the immanent contradiction of civil society in a new way: The worker’s lack of means of production is not, as it is for Hegel, the result of a historical development of civil society, but is already the premise without which its system would not be possible. However, this alternative approach to this problem identified by Hegel cannot be described in the terms of the Hegelian strategies to contain civil society by accentuating individual rights and liberties behind which one cannot step back according to Hegel. With Marx Hegel’s approach is supplemented with the dimension of social freedom.
Andreas Arndt is Professor of Philosophy at the Faculty of Theology of the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and head of the Schleiermacherforschungsstelle at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities.