Philosophical Alternatives 2_2020

Issue editors: Nina Dimitrova and Martin Tabakov
CONTENTS & Abstracts & Keywords

Latyo Latev – – Petar Beron as a European Scientist
: The article discusses the European context of the scientific work of the prominent Bulgarian Revival activist Dr. Petar Beron. The author attempt to give an assessment (and partially, a reassessment) of the scientific activity of P. Beron in connection with the achievements of European (and world) science of that time. The article describes the scientific orbit he followed and in particular, the influences exerted upon him by the science of his time. The basic conclusion is that the conceptions of Beron were rather speculative and not in step with the contemporaneous trend of intensification of experimental science. The author argues that Beron's place in the science of that time should be studied in greater depth.
Keywords: Petar Beron; European science; the National Revival paradigm; scientific influences.

Dimitar Ganov – The Social Significance of the Wills and Donations of Dr. Petar Beron
: The article presents new facts and original analyses of the donation activities and the Wills of Dr. Petar Beron. A number of confirmed opinions about specific donations, teacher support, etc., are found to contain serious omissions and inaccuracies. Many important, but hitherto supressed or unknown, data about abuses involved in the donations are pointed out and analyzed in detail ford the first time in the article. The author reveals so far unknown, or barely touched upon, aspects of the social, political, and economic context of the Wills.
Keywords: Petar Beron; National Revival; girl's education; will; donation.
Dimitar Tsatsov – An Apology of Reason
: The article attempts to overcome the so-called "interpretations with the first derivative" in the interpretation and evaluation of Logic by Vasil Hadjistoyanov-Beron. For this purpose, we emphasize the importance of Kant's philosophy for the proper comprehension of a number of Vasil Beron's basic views on the relation between psychology and logic, between philosophy and the natural science, and others.
Keywords: Vasil Hadjistoyanov-Beron; reason; logic; innate; antipsychologism; philosophy as therapy; etc.

Denitsa Dimitrova – Vasil Hadzhistoyanov-Beron and His First Bulgarian-German Grammar Book
: This article focuses on the contribution of the First Bulgarian-German Grammar Book, written by Vasil Hadzhistoyanov-Beron, the Bulgarian scholar from the National Revival period, to the enlightment of Bulgarian youth in the pre-Liberation period, and to the education of the nation in foreign languages, seen as a means for its integration with the European intellectual level. Beron's work is approached both from a linguistic point of view and with regard to its patriotic and moral message.
Keywords: Vasil Beron; the first Bulgarian-German Grammar Book; Bulgarian Enlightenment; foreign language education.

Atanas Grozdanov – Description and Analysis of the Zoological Information Contained in Vasil Stoyanov-Beron's Book Natural History: Part One. Zoology
: The present study is focused on the zoological content of Vasil Stoyanov-Beron's book Natural history: Part One. Zoology”. As one of the first works of its kind in Bulgaria, the book particularly merits analysis, which would permit evaluating the level of zoological knowledge in the country at the time of its publication and enable making comparisons with the respective level of knowledge in other countries at that time as well as in the present. The article provides such an analysis. A significant characteristic of the book in question is that it combines zoological information that is still valid in our time with a variety of popular and accessible topics that are absent in the scientific style of writing today.
Keywords: zoology; fundamental knowledge; scientific literature.
Angel S. Stefanov – The Lonely Philosophical Island Ivan Gyuzelev
: Ivan Gyuzelev was the first thinker after the Bulgarian Liberation in 1878 to propose an original philosophical system of his own. The aim of this paper is to provide an answer to the intriguing question as to why younger Bulgarian philosophers did not subsequently elaborate this system and establish a specific idealist tradition. Three different reasons are clarified as providing respective answers to the question relevant to three different historical periods: the first – until the end of the 1940s, the second – from the beginning of the 1950s to the end of the 1980s, and the third – from the beginning of the 1990s onwards. Gyuzelev's intellectual enterprise has remained a solitary island surrounded by a sea of other philosophical conceptions that have attracted the interest of Bulgarian philosophers.
Keywords: Ivan Gyuzelev; absolute consciousness; idealist philosophy; transcendental philosophy.

Nina Dimitrova – Religion and Progress: The Philosophical-historical Reflections of Ivan Gyuzelev
: The text discusses philosophical and historical issues present in the works of the prominent Bulgarian educator Ivan Gyuzelev (1844–1916). His publications in the religious periodicals Church Newspaper and Associated Labor are commented on. The ideas of the philosopher regarding the connection between religion and social progress are analyzed. The article concludes that Gyuzelev represents a paradoxical combination between the basic views of the French Enlightenment and Christianity. His conception defines religion as a natural striving for perfection. According to this Bulgarian mathematician and philosopher, the relationship between Christianity and material and spiritual progress is directly proportional. His thesis is that Christianity is a religion of progress, and progress – just like Christian asceticism – is one of the pathways to the Kingdom of God.
Keywords: Ivan Gyuzelev; religion; Christianity; social progress; perfection

Emil Indzhov – Ivan Gyuzelev: A Reformer of Bulgarian Education
: This article presents the educational activities of Ivan Gyuzelev during the 1870s and early 1880s. The article analyzes his pedagogical work at the Gabrovo School, including his preparing school programs and normative documents and creating school structures. His work as a school inspector in 1878 is traced. A main topic of the article is Gyuzelev's pedagogical reforms as Minister of Education in 1880. His legislative and administrative work is analyzed in detail. The conclusion is drawn that Gyuzelev's reforms succeeded in setting the course of formation of a post-Liberation school structure and defining the main problems of education.
Keywords: Ivan Gyuzelev; education; school; reform.
Bisera Koleva – The Enlightenment Ideal of a Revival Activist: Marko Balabanov and His Idea of a Bulgarian Higher School before the Liberation
: The article argues the historical relevance of a non-trivial Enlightenment view – that of Marko Balabanov regarding higher education in Bulgaria as an urgent historical necessity even under the conditions of lack of political freedom, and regarding the creation of a Bulgarian higher school as a public institution within the boundaries of the Turkish Empire. The author claims that Marko Balabanov's view attests to an enlightened and sound reasoning in the context of his socially responsible political philosophy; the idea in question was much more adequate to the historical needs of Bulgarian society in the second half of the 19th century than was the revolutionary and democratic ideal of political independence, an ideal that assigned a subordinate place to education. The article dwells in particular 1) on Balabanov's more general view about education as the vital component of human development and 2) as the unavoidable precondition of political freedom; on 3) his idea regarding the catch-up role of a “purely“ Bulgarian higher school in the context of the rather low educational level of the mass of people; and on 4) his understanding of the autonomous value of scientific knowledge.
Keywords: Bulgarian Enlightenment; Bulgarian school; teachers of the Enlightenment period; the Bell-Lancaster system of mutual instruction; general education; higher education; evolution.

Kamelia Zhabilova – Nietzsche on the “Island” Slaveykov
Abstract: The text highlights the problematic presence of Nietzsche on the “Island” Slaveykov. Why do we say problematic? Yes, “the voice Nietzsche” is very clear and easily traceable not only to Pencho Slaveykov's creative activity but also to his life / existence. The use of “voice” is as metaphorical as it is symptomatic of our effort to be heard, or rather “eavesdropped” on, through the various ranges in which the ideas of the Sils-Maria loner sound in the works and personal biography of Slaveykov.
Keywords: Pencho Slaveykov; Nietzsche; the Island optic.

Nikolay Turlakov – Notes on the Asymmetrical Rhythm of Being, or, What Is Philosophy with a Soul?
: If what is revealed to man and his native world in Haitov's essay “A Meeting with the Song” is viewed in terms of the question “What is song and whistle with a soul?”, then would it make sense to look at philosophy in terms of a similar question, and what could we discover thereby? Is it possible to use the example of a query in Haitov's story about a whistle and a song in order to raise, and expand, the question “What is Philosophy with a Soul?” This essay starts by drawing a distinction between the “creative basis” of the philosophical work and its “theoretical role”; in this way, it is a preparatory attempt to elaborate and answer this question. Philosophy with a soul is the philosophy that, in the depths of everyday life and simplicity, discovers a gap in the authentic rhythm of being – the rhythm that is unexpected in terms of logic, surprisingly bizarre, unequal. This is exactly the Rhythm that fundamentally posits, and acts as, the Meaning of all meanings in our homeworld.
Keywords: soul; folk song; homeworld; meaning; being; authenticity; philosophy.
Radost Pateva – A New Work on Frege: About Kamen Lozev's New Book
Aleksandra Traykova – The Fifteenth National Conference on Ethics “Ethics and Technological Risk”