Plzeňské sympozia

Miloš Havelka

Foreword: Notes on the Imagery of the Theme

pp. 7–15 (Czech), Summary p. 15 (English)

Using the approaches and partly the materials of the “metaphorology” of the German

historian of ideas Hans Blumenberg, this introductory essay interprets the organising

and noetic impact of some typical metaphors of the early modern age (theatrum

mundi, nuda veritas) in the sphere of human knowledge. Against this background the

essay focuses on the ways in which the metaphors “light” and “darkness” (including

their complementarity) have had an impact since the early Enlightenment period,

and indicates how they have been transferred into ethics, axiology, and, in connection

with the category of rational “criticism”, into historiography and politics as well. As

the most obvious sign of the effect they have had, the essay points to the category of

“division into two parts” (Entzweiung); of humanity and the world, of objectivity and

inwardness, of reason and faith, and so on, in classical German philosophy, and also

recalls their further impact in the 19th century.

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