A CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF PHILOSOPHICAL HISTORICISM WITH SPECIAL REFERENCE TO CARL PAGE

Authors

  • DR. MUHAMMAD ATEEQ Department of Philosophy, University of Karachi

Abstract

“Human Reason is historicistic in nature” is the collective viewpoint of most of the contemporary philosophical discourses. Carl Page regards this viewpoint as ‘philosophical historicism’. This view takes the activity of human reason as a mere result of historical causes and context. Page argues that overemphasis on the historical character of human existence ultimately leads contemporary philosophers to the position that all human reason and knowledge are determined by history and are justified by historical context. Consequently, it has replaced the tradition of the first philosophy that regards human reason as universal and ahistorical. The philosophical historicist approach demands that philosophical inquiry must start with knowledge of historical patterns of human life and thought. It regards the historical context of human existence as a key to an understanding of human activity of reason. Page criticizes this approach and says that though some aspects of human reality and reason are historical, ‘philosophical historicism’ does not reasonably justify the idea of a complete historicity of reason. It undermines the natural tendency of the human mind that peruses universal reason and wants to see things as a whole. This paper aims at a critical analysis of philosophical historicism. Through a study of Page’s analysis of ‘philosophical historicism’ and its critique, this study works out the limitations of historicist trends in contemporary philosophical thought and sees how historicists overlook the fact that some of our experiences and awareness are ahistorically known. This study explores how ahistorical reason is relevant to our philosophical inquiries.

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Published

2024-06-07

How to Cite

DR. MUHAMMAD ATEEQ. (2024). A CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF PHILOSOPHICAL HISTORICISM WITH SPECIAL REFERENCE TO CARL PAGE. Quarterly Journal of the Pakistan Historical Society, 72(2). Retrieved from https://phs.com.pk/index.php/phs/article/view/348

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