Wilhelm von Humboldt

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Wilhelm von Humboldt

Friedrich Wilhelm Christian Karl Ferdinand Freiherr von Humboldt (22 Juni 1767 – 8 April 1835) adalah seorang filsuf, pejabat negara dan diplomat Jerman, dan pendiri Humboldt Universität. Dia terutama dikenal sebagai linguis yang banyak menyumbang kepada filsafat bahasa dan teori dan praktek pendidikan. Dia khususnya diakui sebagai penyusun sistem pendidikan Prussia, yang kemudian menjadi contoh bagi sistem pendidikan sejumlah negara, seperti Amerika Serikat dan Jepang.

Humboldt lahir di Potsdam, Brandenburg, dan meninggal di Tegel, juga di Brandenburg. Adiknya, Alexander von Humboldt, tidak kalah terkenalnya, sebagai naturalis dan ilmuwan.

Filsuf[sunting | sunting sumber]

Humboldt adalah seorang filsuf terkemuka. Dia menulis On the Limits of State Action tahun 1791-2, walau buku ini baru diterbitkan tahun 1850, setelah dia meninggal. Buku ini merupakan pembelaan di antara yang paling berani dari kebebasan masa yang dijuluki the Enlightenment atau "Masa Cahaya", di mana budi pekerti dijunjung tinggi dan dijadikan dasar untuk mengecam penindasan dan kebodohan. Buku ini mempengaruhi buku John Stuart Mill On Liberty, yang memperkenalkan gagasan Humboldt di antara penutur bahasa Inggris. Sebetulnya, Humboldt menyusun garis-garis besar dari suatu versi dini dari apa Mill kemudian akan menjuluki "harm principle". Humboldt menguraikan perkembangan liberalisme dan peranan kebebasan dalam pengembangan individu dan pencapaian keunggulan. Humboldt mendesak agar peranan pemerintah dibatasi pada penjagaan keamanan.

Humboldt wrote a publication entitled ‘Ideas for an endeavour to define the limits of state action’[1][2] which was completed in 1792, but was not published in full until long after his death. The section dealing with education was published in the December 1792 issue of the Berlinische Monatsschrift under the title ‘On public state education’. With this publication, Humboldt took part in the philosophical debate on the direction of national education which was in progress in Germany, as elsewhere after the French Revolution.

Menteri Pendidikan[sunting | sunting sumber]

Sebagai menteri Pendidikan Kerajaan Prussian, Humboldt oversaw the system of Technische Hochschulen and Gymnasien. Humboldt’s plans for reforming the Prussian school system were not published until long after his death, together with his fragment of a treatise on the ‘Theory of Human Education’ which had been written in about 1793. Here Humboldt states that ‘the ultimate task of our existence is to give the fullest possible content to the concept of humanity in our own person [...] through the impact of actions in our own lives’. This task ‘can only be implemented through the links established between ourselves as individuals and the world around us’(GS, I, p. 283). Humboldt’s concept of education does not lend itself solely to individualistic interpretation. It is true that he always recognized the importance of the organization of individual life and the ‘development of a wealth of individual forms’ (GS, III, p. 358), but he stressed the fact that ‘self-education can only be continued [...] in the wider context of development of the world’ (GS, VII,p. 33). In other words, the individual is not only entitled, but also obliged, to play his part in shaping the world around him. Humboldt’s educational ideal was entirely coloured by social considerations. He never believed that the ‘human race could culminate in the attainment of a general perfection conceived in abstract terms’. In 1789, he wrote in his diary that ‘the education of the individual requires his incorporation into society and involves his links with society at large’ (GS, XIV, p. 155). In his essay on the ‘Theory of Human Education’, he answered the question as to the ‘demands which must be made of a nation, of an age and of the human race’. ‘Education, truth and virtue’ must be disseminated to such an extent that the ‘concept of mankind’ takes on a great and dignified form in each individual (GS, I, p. 284). However, this shall be achieved personally by each individual who must ‘absorb the great mass of material offered to him by the world around him and by his inner existence, using all the possibilities of his receptiveness; he must then reshape that material with all the energies of his own activity and appropriate it to himself so as to create an interaction between his own personality and nature in a most general, active and harmonious form’ (GS, II, p. 117). In the original text from which this section has been lifted without attribution, "GS" refers to: Humboldt, Wilhelm von. 1903–36. Gesammelte Schriften: Ausgabe Der Preussischen Akademie Der Wissenschaften. Bd. I—XVII, Berlin. (Cited as GS in the text, the Roman numeral indicates the volume and the Arabic figure the page; the original German spelling has been modernized.) "Gesammelte Schriften" means "Collected Writings".

Diplomat[sunting | sunting sumber]

Humboldt sempat menjadi seorang diplomat yang sukses antara tahun 1802 dan 1819. Dia menjadi menteri berkuasa penuh Prussian di Roma dari tahun 1802, duta besar de Vienna dari tahun 1812 selama perang Napoleon, di kongres Praha tahun 1813 di mana dia main peranan penting dalam menyusun persekutuan Austria dengan Prussia dan Russia melawan Prancis. Dia ikut menandatangani perjanjian perdamaian Paris dan perjanjian antara Prussia dan Saxony yang dikalahkannya tahun 1815, at Frankfurt settling post-Napoleonic Germany, and at the congress at Aachen in 1818. However, the increasingly reactionary policy of the Prussian government made him give up political life in 1819; and from that time forward he devoted himself solely to literature and study.

Linguis[sunting | sunting sumber]

Patung Wilhelm von Humboldt di Berlin-Mitte, Jerman

Wilhelm von Humboldt juga seorang linguis. Dia mempelajari bahasa Basque dan menterjemahkan pujangga Yunani kuno Pindar dan Aeschylus ke bahasa Jerman.

Karya Humboldt sebagai filolog untuk bahasa Basque lebih berdampak daripada pekerjaan lainnya. Kunjungannya ke Negeri Basque menghasilkan buku Researches into the Early Inhabitants of Spain by the help of the Basque language (1821). Dalam karyanya, Humboldt, dengan mempelajari nama tempat, berusaha membuktikan bahwa penutur bahasa yang serumpun dengan Basque pernah mendiami Spanyol, Prancis Selatan dan kepulauan Balear. Orang tersebut dia tentukan sebagai "orang Iberia" yang disebut penulis masa klasik Romawi. Dia menambah bahwa orang Iberia tersebut ada hubungan dengan orang Berber di Afrika Utara. Walau karya perintis Humboldt sudah diganti oleh linguistik dan arkeologi modern, kini pun masih ada orang yang mengutipnya tanpa berpikir kritis.

Tahun 1834, Humboldt, dalam buku yang sedang ditulisnya, Über die Kawi-Sprache auf der Insel Java ("Mengenai bahasa Kawi di pulau Jawa", 1836-39) menciptakan nama "Melayu-Polinesia" untuk menyebut rumpun bahasa yang bertebar dari pulau Madagaskar di barat sampai pulau Paskah di timur.

Humboldt meninggal saat sedang menulis karya agungnya mengenai bahasa Kawi. Namun kata pengantar buku ini diterbitkan tahun 1836 dengan judul Heterogeneitas Bahasa dan Pengaruhnya atas Perkembangan Intelektual Manusia. Buku ini membahas filsafat wacana :

"... first clearly laid down that the character and structure of a language expresses the inner life and knowledge of its speakers, and that languages must differ from one another in the same way and to the same degree as those who use them. Sounds do not become words until a meaning has been put into them, and this meaning embodies the thought of a community. What Humboldt terms the inner form of a language is just that mode of denoting the relations between the parts of a sentence which reflects the manner in which a particular body of men regards the world about them. It is the task of the morphology of speech to distinguish the various ways in which languages differ from each other as regards their inner form, and to classify and arrange them accordingly." 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica

Humboldt dianggap linguis Eropa pertama yang melihat bahwa bahwa bahasa adalah suatu sistem yang diatur, daripada hanya sekumpulan kata dan kalimat yang bermakna. Wawasan ini adalah salah satu asas teori bahasa Noam Chomsky. Chomsky sering mengutip penguraian Humboldt tentang bahasa sebagai syitem yang "makes infinite use of finite means", yang berarti bahwa dengan jumlah peraturan tata bahasa yang terbatas, kita dapat menciptakan jumlah kalimat yang tak terbatas. Tilman Borshe, seorang pakar tentang Humboldt, melihat perbedaan yang mendalam antara wawasan Humboldt dan Chomsky mengenai bahasa[3].

Belakangan ini Humboldt juga dianggap sebagai pengucap hipotesa "relativitas linguistik", yang lebih dikenal dengan nama "hipotesa Sapir–Whorf, seratusan tahun sebelum Edward Sapir dan Benjamin Whorf. Namun pandangan Humboldt atas perbedaan antara bahasa lebih canggih dan tidak sekaku itu.

Sources[sunting | sunting sumber]

  1. ^ Ideen zu einem Versuch, die Gränzen der Wirksamkeit des Staats zu bestimmen. 1791
  2. ^ Trewendt
  3. ^ Tilman Borsche, Sprachanansichten. Der Begriff der menschlichen Rede in der Sprachphilosophie Wilhelm von Humboldts, Stuttgart, Klett-Cotta, 1981

See also[sunting | sunting sumber]

Catatan[sunting | sunting sumber]

Works by Humboldt[sunting | sunting sumber]

  • Socrates and Plato on the Divine (orig. Sokrates und Platon über die Gottheit). 1787-1790
  • Humboldt. On the Limits of State Action, first seen in 1792. Ideen zu einem Versuch, die Grenzen der Wirksamkeit des Staates zu bestimmen, page ii. Published by E. Trewendt, 1851 (German)
  • Über den Geschlechtsunterschied. 1794
  • Über männliche und weibliche Form. 1795
  • Outline of a Comparative Anthropology (orig. Plan einer vergleichenden Anthropologie). 1797.
  • The Eighteenth Century (orig. Das achtzehnte Jahrhundert). 1797.
  • Ästhetische Versuche I. - Über Goethe's Hermann und Dorothea. 1799.
  • Latium und Hellas (1806)
  • Geschichte des Verfalls und Untergangs der griechischen Freistaaten. 1807-1808.
  • Pindars "Olympische Oden". Translation from Greek, 1816.
  • Aischylos' "Agamemnon". Translation from Greek, 1816.
  • Über das vergleichende Sprachstudium in Beziehung auf die verschiedenen Epochen der Sprachentwicklung. 1820.
  • Über die Aufgabe des Geschichtsschreibers. 1821.
  • Researches into the Early Inhabitants of Spain with the help of the Basque language (orig. Prüfung der Untersuchungen über die Urbewohner Hispaniens vermittelst der vaskischen Sprache). 1821.
  • Über die Entstehung der grammatischen Formen und ihren Einfluss auf die Ideenentwicklung. 1822.
  • Upon Writing and its Relation to Speech (orig. Über die Buchstabenschrift und ihren Zusammenhang mit dem Sprachbau). 1824.
  • Über die unter dem Namen Bhagavad-Gita bekannte Episode des Maha-Bhárata. 1826.
  • Über den Dualis. 1827.
  • On the languages of the South Seas (orig. Über die Sprache der Südseeinseln). 1828.
  • On Schiller and the Path of Spiritual Development (orig. Über Schiller und den Gang seiner Geistesentwicklung). 1830.
  • Rezension von Goethes Zweitem römischem Aufenthalt. 1830.
  • The Heterogeneity of Language and its Influence on the Intellectual Development of Mankind (orig. Über die Verschiedenheit des menschlichen Sprachbaus und ihren Einfluss auf die geistige Entwicklung des Menschengeschlechts). 1836. New edition: On Language. On the Diversity of Human Language Construction and Its Influence on the Mental Development of the Human Species, Cambridge University Press, 2nd rev. edition 1999

Works by other authors[sunting | sunting sumber]

  • Hegel, 1827. On The Episode of the Mahabharata Known by the Name Bhagavad-Gita by Wilhelm Von Humboldt.
  • Joxe Azurmendi, Humboldt. Hizkuntza eta pentsamendua, UEU, 2007. ISBN 978-84-8438-099-3.
  • Elsina Stubb, Wilhelm Von Humboldt's Philosophy of Language, Its Sources and Influence, Edwin Mellen Press, 2002
  • John Roberts, German Liberalism and Wilhelm Von Humboldt: A Reassessment, Mosaic Press, 2002
  • David Sorkin, "Wilhelm Von Humboldt: The Theory and Practice of Self-Formation (Bildung), 1791-1810" in: Journal of the History of Ideas, Vol. 44, No. 1 (Jan. - Mar., 1983), pp. 55–73
  • James W. Underhill, Humboldt, Worldview and Language, Edinburgh University Press, 2009 [1]

Pranala luar[sunting | sunting sumber]

Didahului oleh:
Count Friedrich von Schuckmann
Interior Minister of Prussia
1819
Diteruskan oleh:
Count Friedrich von Schuckmann