Hegel and Aquinas on Self-Knowledge and Historicity

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The Hegelian and the Thomistic accounts of self-knowledge are solidly Aristotelian in their origins and motivations. In their conclusions and consequences, however, the two accounts exhibit significant differences. Hegel argues that genuine self-knowledge is necessarily social and historical, while Aquinas says nothing about history or society in his account of self-knowledge. The aim of this paper is not to decide the issue concerning historicity in favor of either Hegel or Aquinas. The aim here is rather to address a prior question: what are the systematic and philosophical reasons for the difference between the two thinkers? In order to articulate this difference between the two, we might begin by considering an underlying similarity: their common Aristotelian background.
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Archival date: 2019-06-24
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