The complex theoretical framework outlined in the introduction to the first two volumes of Order and History had been partially foreseen by Voegelin in the theory of representation he introduced in New Science of Politics. In this work Voegelin had declared his wish to leave behind the widespread practice of a “political theory” based on ideas and values, and thus on opinion (doxa) in order to reconquer access to a “political science” (politike episteme) based on an authentic knowledge. The article seeks to reconstruct the stages that brought about this result for Voegelin. In particular it is shown that this was reached following an Aristotelian methodology, that is, developing a zetesis (inquiry) starting from singling out precise open problems (aporiai) in the scientific reference panorama, marked by a varied adherence to Neokantianism. With regard to this, it is shown how the figure of Max Weber constituted the privileged reference point for Voegelin to identify the weak points of the Baden Neo-Kantians. Voegelin for a long time has been committed to the comparison between two distinct issues that both played a central role in twentieth-century philosophy. The first, from ancient tradition, consists in the search for criteria that permit establishing what political reality is and wherein lies its intrinsic link with history. The second consists in establishing the distinctive characteristics of the object of historical sciences. In both fields the recourse to Aristotelian epistemological principles and the adherence to the ontology upon which it is based were crucial, in order to identify and resolve the aporias found in these two areas. The article pays special attention to the terminology Voegelin uses, and above all to the term “form” that recurs in the key expression “form of experience.” One wonders the meaning with which Voegelin intends it and in what measure it corresponds to the Aristotelian term “eidos.”
The first volume of this new yearbook focuses on Eric Voegelin’s 1952 paper “New Science of Politics”, its significance and enduring relevance.
Eric Voegelin’s “New Science of Politics” is today considered a classic of recent political philosophy, albeit a controversial one. As soon as it was published, the book caused a sensation, especially because of its relatively sharp criticism of the normative foundations of Western modernity. In doing so, Voegelin places the question of the ambiguity of the concept of representation and its claim to truth at the center of his reflections. The contributions to this volume aim to shed light on how fruitful and topical this perspective still is today from various perspectives. The contributions come from authors of different disciplines, including political science, philosophy, and sociology. In addition to a classification of the “New Science of Politics” in Voegelin’s oeuvre as a whole, the volume primarily inquires into the systematically interesting points of contact, which are also of interest beyond Voegelin’s reception.
Since the publication of the German edition of Israel and Revelation a noteworthy turnaround in the method of conducting research on this book has taken place.
The innovation consisted of bringing its interdisciplinary nature into greater relief, an aim which is further pursued by the essays collected in the present volume. Its four thematic sections focus respectively on civilization forms, on the order of human history, on specific aspects of Old Testament exegesis, and finally on the meaning of the term “revelation” in the context of the biblical events narrated.
Eric Voegelin-Studies: Yearbook publishes peer-reviewed, scholarly articles related to Eric Voegelin in the areas of political theory, history of political ideas, civilization history, sociology, philosophy, literature, and theology. Articles are accepted from various sources, including the Annual Conferences of the Eric-Voegelin-Gesellschaft and of the Eric Voegelin Society.
Eric Voegelin-Studies: Supplements flankiert als wissenschaftliche Buchreihe das 2022 startende Eric-Voegelin-Jahrbuch und bietet ein ideales Forum, spezifische Aspekte der dort erscheinenden Beiträge weiter auszuführen. So entstehen Spielräume für kleinere oder größere Monografien sowie Publikationen mehrerer Autor:innen. Wie das Yearbook sind die Supplements als internationales und interdisziplinäres Projekt konzipiert. Sie sollen den wissenschaftlichen Austausch und die internationale Zusammenarbeit über Voegelins Werk erweitern.
Eric Voegelin-Studies: Supplements offers an ideal forum to further elaborate on specific aspects of the contributions in the Yearbook. This creates scope for smaller or larger monographs as well as publications by several authors. The Supplements are conceived as an international and interdisciplinary project. They are intended to expand scholarly exchange and international collaboration on Voegelin’s work.