Hegel e il problema della fondazione: non-fondazionalismo, anti-fondazionalismo o auto-fondazionalismo?


My contribution addresses the relationship between Hegel and the prob- lem of ‘foundationalism’. I will discuss – both from a historical and from a theoretical point of view – a group of interpretations of Hegel that are commonly defined ‘non-fondationalist’, which have been elaborated starting from the 1970s by scholars such as Kenley Dove, Richard Dien Winfield and William Maker. These readings defend the following claim: Hegel’s philosophy represents an alternative to ‘fountationalism’ that is more consistent and convincing than the ‘anti-foundationalist’ position put forth by Rorty and the so-called Neo-pragmatists.

I will investigate this claim in three steps. (1) I will briefly survey the emergence of the quarrel between ‘foundationalists’ and ‘anti-foundationalists’ starting from the XXth century, and I will define the basic claims of the two positions. (2) I will focus on the ‘non-foundationalist’ Hegelianism, and reconstruct its main argument. By doing so, I will distinguish between 3 senses of ‘foundationalism’ that are present in the argument. There is (a) an epistemological sense (referring to the foundation of knowledge) (b) a sense that I will call ‘conceptual’ (referring to the justification of a certain conceptual apparatus) and (c) a meta-philosophical sense (referring to the aim and the scope of philosophy). (3) I will show that the ‘non-foundationalist’ position succeeds in its criticism of the traditional epistemological foundationalism, but needs further elaboration to provide a consistent alternative to the Rortyian anti-foundationalist stance.