The Hero in History: A Study in Limitation and Possibility

The Hero in History: A Study in Limitation and Possibility

The Hero in History: A Study in Limitation and Possibility

The Hero in History: A Study in Limitation and Possibility

Excerpt

The title of this book indicates its subject matter, not a special philosophy of history. It could with as much justice have been entitled "The Limits of the Hero in History." That, too, would tell what the book is about and not what we believe about it. What we believe about it is detailed in the book. The reader is begged not to infer it from the title alone.

That history is made by men and women is no longer denied except by some theologians and mystical metaphysicians. And even they are compelled indirectly to acknowledge this commonplace truth, for they speak of historical personages as "instruments" of Providence, Justice, Reason, Dialectic, the Zeitgeist, or Spirit of the Times. Men agree more readily about the consequences of the use: of "instruments" in history than they do about the ultimate ends "instruments" allegedly serve, or the first causes by which they are allegedly determined.

Consequences are difficult to establish; human intentions more so. In principle, where there is a desire to know the truth, we can intelligently answer questions about our intentions. But there can be no scientific agree-

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.