Turned on its head

The Germans are criticized for “thinking things to death”, for overanalyzing. Deep analysis has a long and honored tradition in Germany, however. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, just as one example, wanted to turn Hegel’s philosophy “on its head.”

It is the goal of all great thinkers to explain reality as it is, and not the other way around, to force reality into their theories. All new situations and phenomena should be explainable, at a minimum placed in some logical perspective.

Thinking in systems, in connections and in mutual interdependencies is a red thread (a constant theme) in German philosophy, from Kant to Hegel to Max Weber on to Karl Popper and others of today. It is stressed in schools and universities in all subject areas.