Kantian Journal

2021 Vol. 40. №3

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Kant and His Heritage in Belarusian Philosophy of the Soviet and Post-Soviet Periods

DOI
10.5922/0207-6918-2021-3-5
Pages
127-149

Abstract

The interpretation of Kant’s philosophy by thinkers in pre-Soviet Belarus has been the subject of not a few publications. They described the reception of his seminal ideas, the analysis, polemic and occasionally sharp criticism of these ideas. It is helpful now to look at Kantian studies beginning from the 1920s to the present time. I will show that immediately after the October 1917 revolution and until the 1930s interest in Kant’s teaching was waning. When they turned to his ideas during that period Belarusian authors described and analysed them primarily in textbooks or when examining, or rather criticising, the views of Western philosophers, thereby rigidly adhering to Lenin’s assessments. During and after World War II the number of studies was also very insignificant. It was not until the beginning of Perestroika that an urgent need was felt for a new reading of Western philosophy, and interest in Kant’s heritage in the country increased sharply. A surge of interest was registered beginning from 2004 which was declared “Immanuel Kant Year” by UNESCO. From that time onward Belarus has hosted a number of international forums devoted to Kant, materials of conferences, articles and textbooks have been published, dissertations defended etc. The article reviews the main trends of these studies in the Soviet and post-Soviet periods.

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