POLI 201 Lecture Notes - Lecture 15: Human Spirit, World War I, Class Conflict

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Published on 11 Apr 2017
1. POLI SCI 201 –Lecture 15
The end of history thesis
G.W.F Hegel believed “history” reached its goal in the 19th century. By
that he meant that there were no further contradictions (ie. master-
slave) that needed reconciling.
People finally realized they were free, and lived in a way that
was conscious of that freedom. The world’s spirit was finally
conscious of itself in civil society and in the state.
Human spirit will continue, but history in the philosophic sense
was finally at its terminus.
All that remained was for mankind to live out history, rather
than perfect it.
Fukuyama would say history ended too early
Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) feared that the triumph of Western
life resulted in “the last man.” These people live comfortable and
peaceful lives. They no longer debate about the nature of power, live
decadently, and do not understand the difference between the great
and the subpar.  Important of life is to be great not to suffer,
problems are now first-world problems
The last men are incapable of greatness, genius, or exercise of
human will to power. They are weak, soft, materialistic
creatures.  something meaningless of having first-world
Called will of power
Is this in fact the world we live in?
William James (1842-1910) popularized the philosophy of pragmatism.
It is a theory of truth that states that whatever works is what is true.
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