he literary genre of academic programs (orationes programmaticae, Programmschriften, Einladungssschriften) defines itself on the basis of the following requirements: they were (1) connected with a course; (2) printed on one or more (also in fractions of half) signatures in quarto or in octavo; and (3) distributed unbound free of charge at the expenses of the professor. To date, German eighteenth-century academic programs have not been made the subject of scientific investigations due to the difficulty of a strict definition of the genre. As a rule, their contents were provocative and hyperbolic, given the professor’s aim of gaining the benevolence of the students by condescending to their reasoning abilities. Most importantly, professors felt free to express themselves on issues they might not have gone into in fully fledged treatises. The volume presents thirteen philosophical Programmschriften handed out between 1687 and 1822 by Thomasius, Wolff, Darjes, G.F. Meier, Tetens, Kant, Fichte, Herbart and Beneke. Most of the texts have not been reprinted, with the exception of the ones by Wolff, Kant and Fichte – which, however, gather new light by being put into a completely new context.
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