Naugle – Chapter 4

Key19th century figures contributing to the philosophical history of “Worldview” namely include: G. W. F. Hegel, Soren Kierkegaard, Wilhelm Dilthey, and Friedrich Nietzsche. Hegel developed the idea of the Absolute Spirit and “the discovery of alternative conceptual frameworks,” clarified worldview as separate from philosophy and religion, and articulated worldview as individual and communal. Kierkegaard is noted for his emphasis on “lifeview,” the reflective means by which man makes sense of his world by looking back at experience. Kierkegaard argues “lifeview” to be foundational for literature, friendship, parenthood, and education. Dilthey wanted to formulate an objective epistemology for the human sciences, but discovered no absolute, scientific, metaphysical construct that could define the nature of reality with finality. While acknowledging worldviews to hold pieces of truth, he concluded, “one must never mistake one’s corner for the world.” Nietzsche intercepted this growing skepticism about truth and the ultimate nature of reality and argued “worldview” and “truth” to be only tools by which man navigated (however purposelessly) the chaos that is.

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