Jürgen Kaube was born in 1962 and is a managing editor of the Frankfurter Allgemeiner Zeitung. He previously oversaw the humanities desk and was vice editor-in-chief of the culture section. In 2012 he was awarded the title of journalist of the year in the field of science by medium magazine and received the Ludwig-Borne prize in 2015. His highly acclaimed biography of Max Weber (2014) was nominated for the Leipzig Book Fair prize. The Süddeutsche Zeitung called his bestseller The Beginning of Everything (2017) “an exceptionally readable book“ which is “incredibly interesting.“
World, spirit, life: Jürgen Kaube’s epic biography of Hegel on the 250th anniversary of his birth.
Jürgen Kaube tells of Hegel’s life, introduces us to his thinking and shows how both of these reflect an epoch of radical change. There is no other thinker who helps us better learn about the transition of the old Europe to modern society, also known as the “Saddle Period“. Over the course of these decades, the world fundamentally changed; be it the French Revolution and the Napoleonic era, technology, industry or the colonisation of foreign continents. It is not without reason that Hegel stands for the onset of a philosophy which attempted to conceptually grasp its own time.Amongst other places, Hegel worked in Jena, the intellectual hub of the classical era, with inspirational proximity to Schiller and Goethe, who he knew just as he did the other greats of his time.
As an exceptionally gifted polemicist, he loved intellectual sparring matches, especially with the romantics, for instance. As a man with multi-faceted interests, he loved absorbing new ideas. Kaube also pays great attention to Hegel’s personal life, such as his illegitimate son, who succumbed to tropical fever in Indonesia, or Hegel’s sister who was involved in the republican conspiracy in Württemberg. This is a fascinating biography that describes a time in which the world was being reformed. It might well be this aspect which allows this book to resonate with our world in the present day.