Abstract Both Feuerbach and Marx accuse Hegel of inversing the subject and the predicate, but the reality is much more complex. Hegel’s theory of logic is a vast system. In terms of the relationship between the subject and the predicate alone, there is a systematic theory that is centered on the relationship between the universality, particularity and individuality of concepts and that contains four major types of judgement. And there is no assertion featuring the subjectpredicate inversion in a logically clear form within Hegel’s system. Nevertheless, the whole philosophy of Hegel aims at grasping das Absolute, the rationalized form of the Christian God, by deducing concepts. On the one hand, “das Absolute” means precisely “the absolute”, i.e., something absolute, and since it is unique in Hegel’s
sense, Hegel takes it as the ultimate subject of all philosophical propositions, and regards all logical categories and actual things as predicates which it employs to express, explain and actualize itself. In this regard, there is at least no inversion in the form. On the other hand, with regard to the content, das Absolute is the ultimate subject, that is, the least clear concept, and all other concepts are clearer than it, so they are its predicates. At the same time, it potentially contains the greatest universality, and all other concepts are its unfolding particularity; in this sense it can be considered the most abstract, and all other concepts are more concrete than it. Even “Being (Sein)”, defined by Hegel as its initial predicate, is less abstract than it; hence only in this respect Hegel makes the mistake
of inversing the subject and the predicate. Further, on the premise that “das Absolute” is the subject of all concepts, Hegel’s deduction of philosophical propositions, starting with “Being”, moves from the abstract to the concrete at every step. And it can be argued that he consistently takes the more abstract concepts as subjects and the more concrete concepts as predicates. Therefore, a reasonable accusation of Hegel’s subjectpredicate inversion should be generally confined to this.