This article proposes a reading of Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit as a translation project akin to that of Luther’s Bible and Voss’s Homer, following Hegel’s own placement of his work within this lineage of major Ger-man translations. Different from his predecessors, however, Hegel does not translate a canonical text from the Western tradition, but rather strives to translate a theological-philosophical language that does not yet exist. In this orientation toward a language that is not yet, his first major philosophical work—and translation project—is oracular in ways that have yet to be explored in Hegel scholarship. By attending closely to his explicit discussion of the oracle in the Phenomenology of Spirit, one of the most underexamined passages of the text, this article shows that Hegel’s book is. foremost, a prophecy of language that would speak against the overwhelming systematic tendency of his thought.

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