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Vogt, Peter (2016): What was "Geschichtsphilosophie"? In: Journal of the Philosophy of History, Vol. 10, No. 2: pp. 195-210
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This paper looks at modern philosophy of history in the sense of the German concept of "Geschichtsphilosophie". "Geschichtsphilosophie", as it was formulated since the heydays of German Idealism, always implied the belief that it is possible to make true statements about the future. I will take a closer look at such a version of philosophy of history by reconstructing Odo Marquard's arguments against "Geschichtsphilosophie" and Heinz Dieter Kittsteiner's defense of it. These two authors were asking precisely the same question about the essence of "Geschichtsphilosophie", but came to totally different conclusions. I will defend Marquard's position and thus will come to the position that history cannot be made or at least cannot be made in the way agents want it to be made. However, my insistence on the inevitable limits of any project to make history as it has been constitutive for modern philosophy of history, in no way precludes the possibility of making politics. Thus, at the very end of my paper, I argue for the fundamental difference between the making of history and the making of politics.