The Myth of the State

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Yale University Press, 1946 - Philosophy - 303 pages
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A great contemporary German philosopher attacks the explosive problem of political myth in our day, and reveals how the myth of the state evolved from primitive times to prepare the way for the rise of the modern totalitarian state. "A brilliant survey of some of the major texts in the history of political theory."—Kenneth Burke, The Nation.
 

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The last work of a great contemporary German philosopher, 1874-1945. Survey of major texts in political theory--how the concept of the state developed from primitive times through Plato, Dante ... Read full review

Contents

PART II
38
Logos and Mythos in Early Greek Philosophy
53
W Platos Republic
61
Medieval Theory of the State
78
ophy
97
Theories of the State
163
mantic Critics
176
Carlyle
189
From Hero Worship to Race Worship
224
Hegel
248
The Technique of the Modern Political Myths
277
Conclusion
297
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About the author (1946)

Ernst Cassirer, a German neo-Kantian philosopher, taught at several European universities before moving to the United States and teaching at Yale (1941-1944) and Columbia universities. A prolific historian of philosophy, Cassirer was influenced by Immanuel Kant and Georg Hegel but originated his own distinctive doctrine. The centerpiece of Cassirer's thought is his theory of symbolic forms. He construed representation, the ground of symbolic form, to be essentially symbolic, fusing perceptual materials with conceptual meanings. The human species, he taught, is essentially a symbolizing animal. He maintained that symbolic forms are manifest in different modes-languages, myth, art, science, and religion. Cassirer utilized his theory of symbolic forms in the elaboration of a flexible philosophy of culture.

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