Na introdução de seu excelente After Hegel – German Philosophy 1840-1900, Frederick Beiser justifica a importância de um exame da filosofia da segunda metade do século XIX. Ao contrário da visão corrente, Beiser defende que a filosofia desse período é ainda mais profícua e interessante do que a do começo do século Entre as razões arroladas, Beiser fornece uma bastante significativa, centrada na crise da Filosofia vivida no período e em seu consequente aspecto revolucionário:
Normal times in philosophy are those when there is a settled and agreed definition of philosophy, when philosophers have a general consensus about the nature of their discipline and the tasks it involves. Revolutionary times are those when there is no such definition, when there are many conflicting conceptions of philosophy. Following these definitions, the late eighteenth, early nineteenth, and late twentieth centuries were normal times. The latter half of the nineteenth century, however, was revolutionary. For this was an age when there was no settled or agreed definition of philosophy, when there were many conflicting conceptions of the discipline. Philosophers asked themselves the most basic questions about their discipline: What is philosophy? How does it differ from empirical science? Why should we do philosophy?