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“Historism”, “The Problem of Historism”, “The Crisis of Historism”: the Concept of Historism in German “Moral Sciences” (Geisteswissenschaften) in the 19th–20th Centuries

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Abstract. Historical science as a research is the product of the Age of Enlightenment. Before that, history was nothing more than a memory of the past. Awareness of the historicity (constant variability in time) of the world, human and his culture has created a specific type of thinking in the categories of history, i.e., perception of life processes in their historical development. Only in the beginning of 20th century German theologian E. Troeltsch gave this phenomenon a name historicism (germ. Historismus). However, the concept of “historicism” has one more meaning. Starting from the middle of the 19th century in Germany, “historicism” significates the empirical method of the research of the past, which has spread in the Humanities (law, Economics, theology) as an alternative to Hegel’s philosophy of history and its deductive method of cognition. The article analyzes the discussions of the 19th and early 20th centuries about historicism as a method of research, as a phenomenon of the spiritual life of society and characteristic of The Moderne era.

Keywords: historicism, problem of historicism, crisis of historicism, values and norms, objectivity of historical knowledge and its conditions, relativism, Modernity (Moderne).

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