Culture as a Living Organism: Some Words on Danilevsky’s Theory of Cultural-Historical Types

Tetiana Danylova, Ihor Hoian

Abstract

This paper aims to explore Danilevsky’s theory of cultural-historical types. The authors used hermeneutic, cultural-historical, and integrative approaches. Denying the understanding of the history of humankind as the linear reality for the formation of the socio-cultural system of universalism, Danilevsky relies on the multivariate historical development and elaborates a methodology of civilizational discreteness that takes into account the originality and integrity of each particular cultural-historical type. The thinker emphasizes that the core of any cultural-historical type is a certain ethnos with its specific set of attitudes and values. Although this approach can not explain global integration tendencies, it allows to take into account the multidimensional vectors of human cultural space and the unique experience of different civilizations. Danilevsky introduced into the scientific discourse the idea of the integrity and self-sufficiency of each cultural-historical type. This idea was developed by a German historian, representative of the philosophy of life O. Spengler in his book “The Decline of the West”, in which the theory of local civilizations was enriched with morphological studies of history, and a British historian, philosopher of history, sociologist A. Toynbee, who laid out his universalist philosophy of history in the twelve-volume work “The Study of History”.




Keywords


N. Danilevsky; culture; civilization; cultural-historical type; local civilizations

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References


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