Kant, Goethe, Schiller and other eighteenth-century German intellectuals loom large in the history of the humanities—both in terms of their individual achievements and their collective embodiment of the values that inform modern humanistic inquiry. Taking full account of the manifold challenges that the humanities face today, this volume recasts the question of their viability by tracing their long-disputed premises in German literature and philosophy. Through insightful analyses of key texts, Alexander Mathas mounts a broad defense of the humanistic tradition, emphasizing its pursuit of a universal ethics and ability to render human experiences comprehensible through literary imagination.
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