July 3, 2017

Oswald Spengler and his book

German philosopher Oswald Spengler and culture (1880-1936) made a significant contribution to the formation of cultural studies through its main work “Decline of the West. Essays on the morphology of world history.” However, this work value and importance of ideas contained in it uniform. When reading it can distinguish itself culturologic core mission to set out the same political theory direction and some ideas of historical prediction. This and his other writings are as faithful insights and false assumptions, focused on the interpretation of the historical development. Therefore, the study of heritage Spengler provides thoughtful reading and differentiated assessment that occurred in the past and which are necessary at this time.

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The first volume of “West of the Western world” was released in 1918. The reason for this name served Spengler accidentally seen their title the book “The Decline of the Ancient World”, an idea that was erected them on the level of the system. Before writing the book Spengler prepared more than three years and then proceeded directly to the implementation plan that came out of it in one go. The second volume was published in 1922 and a year later by thoroughly revised and the first volume. Work Spengler had incredible success that can explain the situation at the time – the time the First World War, apocalyptic feeling returned from the front of young people prone to making ideas prophecies about the future of Western culture. But not only in Germany contemporaries enthusiastically reacted to the author of this work. In cultural ideas Spengler also attracted the attention of thinking people of that time. As a result, in 1922 comes a collection of articles NA Berdyaev FA Stepun and others. “Oswald Spengler and the Decline of the West” and book Art. N. Lazarev “Oswald Spengler and his views on art.”

Recent work by Spengler are obvious journalistic character. They highlighted current problems of the modern world. He remains true to its theme: justification crisis of Western culture, and in this regard calls for courage to resist those tendencies which irresistibly bring her death.

The style of the book “The Decline of the Western World”

“Decline of the Western World” is not a usual type of academic philosophical literature – legitimate at a time when the cultural texts were not speech. How basic work written Spengler, caused a number of conflicting assessments – from enthusiastic to sharply critical. Yes, Thomas Mann, sharply hostile to the ideas of the book, the article “On the Spengler doctrine” called it “intellectual novel”, not a “treatise”, “realized that merging poetry and critical areas which have started our romance and powerfully stimulated philosophical lyrics Nietzsche, this process erases the boundaries between science and art, infuses living, pulsing blood in abstract thought, inspired plastic images and creates the kind of book that if I am not mistaken, took the now prominent position and can be called “intelligent novel.” to this type you can definitely and “West” due to its properties such as literary brilliance of presentation and intuitive style cultural and historical characteristics.”

The element of language plays in “West of the Western world” is not less important than what it tend to play in the lyrics. By deliberately broke with the tradition of classical Western philosophy and creates original concept vehicle, which, in his opinion, can more subtly capture the essence of the local culture. Historical thinking Spengler unjustifiably equated only with an intuitive vision, designed to get a complete image-symbolic form. S. p. Averintsev notes that the author is no limit critical attitude to their own techniques, metaphorical words convergence hopelessly confused with the philosophical work on concepts, since reading Spengler to distinguish between sense and nonsense in its morphology culture.

Genetically views Spengler go rather rooted in the deeper layers of the philosophical tradition. Closely linked bonds he looks W. Goethe, in the natural works which set out the doctrine of borrowed Spengler. But if I.. Goethe wrote about the study of natural phenomena, which should be based on ascertaining the real total, typical for a particular group, Spengler brings this method to the area of study of cultural integrity. If the transfer of alleged or apparent predecessors, it can be called John. Vico, N. Machiavelli, VR Herder, Hegel RV, FV. Schelling, Art. Dilthey, Weber, etc. When writing the first Tom “West Western World” author might not have been familiar with the works of Henri Bergson, Pareto, Jean Sorel and Freud. It is impossible not to notice the amazing parallelism of ideas Spengler. Still, the question remains about the possibility / impossibility of ideas first exposure to the concept of a second. At least when it was translated into German book “Roth Exposure and Europe”, the first volume of” West of the Western world “was already written. R. Shpet, according to PA Sorokin in 1921 saw the work of Russian philosopher Spengler.

Spengler, considered in the context of the history of philosophy, will take it to the base area which has received the name “philosophy of life”, which is referred Schopenhauer, Friedrich Nietzsche, A. Bergson and Art. Dilthey, G. Simmel. Combines these philosophy that everything in their theories, they chose a central concept of “life”, although its interpretation they were different. The original concept of philosophy Spengler – the concept of organic life that determines its morphology. Life for him – concept – an idea that unfolds itself out of options. The deployment comes in the form of conception the birth, growth, aging, death. Time soul, destiny, life for Spengler, synonyms, here is also the concept of “rhythm” and “beat.” Annex to the culture of biological concepts, which are essentially metaphors, There we met an inheritance.

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Organic life he identifies with being in general, inorganic as purely negative, because inorganic – is like a “dead” lifeless. The desire to plant life, to “cosmic” to culture “beat”, “rhythm” in man more than any living creature – and this desire leads to Spengler, to the birth culture. Culture – is like cooking soul people in the team, so all abstract, “spatial” – not only science, but also, for example, religion or classical type of idealism – it is essentially.

Spengler calls “predatory animal “, which differs from animals that have the ability to the nature of its own existence, awareness escape moments of life. Satisfying their needs, a person subject to continuous in which he wins and his own physicality. In this process, it needs changing, which now cannot be reduced to the primary vital needs, and this leads eventually to cultural production; there are universal aspirations of spirit, universal values. Spirit – product dying soul. Indisputable “life” but not too “spiritual phenomena like state policy, ownership and so on. Certainly belong to his culture, but the culture in the final stages of its development.

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