Saturday, February 28, 2015

Sense Certainty Is Finished!

The final video installment of the section Sense Certainty is now finished and released!  That means that we've now passed a new milestone of sorts -- getting through one of the sections of the text proper (as opposed to the Preface and Introduction)



It ended up requiring six videos total -- about 3 hours -- to get through the 21 paragraphs in this section.  When I think back to the semester-long Hegel course I took as a graduate student two decades back, I believe that we might have spent about an hour or so on this section -- though the professor noted that when he'd taken his Hegel, it was a year-long course, allowing the study to proceed at a much more leisurely pace.

Three hours of video for this section seems like a decent amount for a contemporary student who'd like to be able to work their way through the Phenomenology on their own, using the series as a resource.  It's doable in, say, a weekend, leaving time for a person to reread, reflect, argue with oneself, argue with Hegel, and so forth . . . .

In any case, it's now on to the 21 paragraphs of the following section, "Perception" . . . .

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Making Our Way Through Sense Certainty

Sense Certainty is a fairly short, and -- at least in relation to some of the material coming up (e.g. Force and the Understanding) -- pretty straightforward section of the Phenomenology of Spirit.  For those who have been following along through the Preface and the Introduction, and have been wondering, "when are we going to get to something not just about method, about specific shapes of consciousness?", you get some of that in Sense Certainty.

Hegel is indeed starting out at -- or quickly getting into -- what might appear a rather high level of generality or abstraction.  But there's a good reason for this.  When we start at what we think to be the exact opposite end of things, with what is most concrete, what is immediately present, what we experience, it turns out that when we look more closely at this seemingly basic truth, matters are not at all that simple -- there's mediation going on, and if we follow along, we get to witness some dialectical development.  That's already taken place, and continually takes place -- we're just not aware of it until we start paying closer attention.

At present, I've produced four video installments for this section:
By the end of February, I'll have produced, uploaded, and released two more -- and with those, we will be finished with Sense Certainty, and ready to move into the next section, Perception.