Philosopher. Georg Friedrich Hegal received notoriety as a German philosopher in the first half of the nineteenth century, who is considered with his colleagues Johann Gottlieb Fichte and Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph von Schelling as the founders of “Idealism.” According to the “Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy,” Idealism is “any system or theory that maintains that “the real” is of the nature of thought or that the object of external perception consists of ideas .” Thereafter, his dialectic thought evolved towards more rationalist ideas and less romanticize. His theories have influenced many contemporary philosophers, including Karl Marx, Ludwig Andreas von Feuerbach and Jean-Paul Sartre, and drew criticism from schools of thought represented by Arthur Schopenhauer, Soren Kierkegaard, Friedrich Nietzsche and Martin Heidegger. The many tragedies of his life may have impacted his view of life. Born the oldest of three children that lived to adulthood, his father was a civil servant; his younger brother died as an officer in Napoleon's army in 1812; and his sister suffered from mental problems, being committed to asylums and ending her life with suicide by drowning three months after his death. Majoring first in theology, he attended the University of Tubingen from 1788 to 1793, excelling in his lessons. After graduation, he became a private tutor to a wealthy Swiss family before devoting himself to developing his own ideas on religion and other social concerns, becoming a modern educator, being a figure in German Enlightenment, and becoming a philosopher. Although had the opportunity to become published, he did not write any articles while he was the editor of a newspaper. He was a follower of Immanuel Kant. Since he received a small inheritance, h e did not earn a stable salary until 1803, thus did not marry until May 16, 1811. He had three sons with one becoming a professor, one a politician, and from an earlier relationship, one predeceased him by dying young while serving in the Dutch military. Between 1808 and 1816 he was a professor at Lyceum of Nuremberg and the University of Heidelberg, and from 1818 until 1829 at the University of Berlin, where he was appointed Rector in October of that year. In the last ten years of his life, he became a much-in-demand lecturer in Berlin. He published several books including his first “Phenomenology of Spirit” in 1807; “Science of Logic,” a three-volume book published between 1812-1816; “Encyclopedia of Philosophy of Sciences” in 1817; and his last major publication, “The Philosophy of Right” in 1821. He often did revisions of his earlier writings. After his death, versions of his lectures on philosophy of history, philosophy of religion, aesthetics, and the history of philosophy were published.
Bio by: Linda Davis