So, yes let's go with Joe's suggestion and follow up on the next meet. There won't be any background requirements for this.
Mark will give an introduction to Hegel, starting with the genesis of his ideas from Kant, then I will give a short introduction to Nietzsche's ideas.
After that everyone can discuss their ideas openly. Ask questions, consider more about it, and also just talk in general.
It is important to note going into the discussion the difference between one's personal opinion about the philosophers and their ideas; and that of an analysis of the ideas. In the discussion we'll focus more on the latter, and emphasize less on subjective feelings.
The discussion is a brief overview, not a comprehensive one about the ideas.
-----If you are new to this, a brief outline-----
This discussion comes as a result of our previous one, which touched upon existentialism as a philosophical idea. Existentialism was a movement in post-WW2 France that could be summarized as asserting the individual's agency and right to live in the face of the terror of modernity and modern life. Its slogan was 'existence precedes essence'.
However, before we are to go into Existentialism (eventually), we need to discuss about the ideas that came before. Existentialism had it roots in Kierkegaad and Nietzsche, who was reacting to the ideas of Kant and Hegel. But who are they?
Kant and Hegel were giants of late 19th century German (and Western) philosophy, who posited complete systems that sought to systematize all ideas about life and living - the metaphysics, epistemology and morality of life. Hegel built upon Kant ideas, which culminated in a form of idealism. (See links below).
Nietzsche reacted to those ideas by rejecting the complete systems of Kant, and in particular, his epistemology that claimed of a 'beyond' of this world that can never be known by the senses (ie. God or the afterlife).
This has huge implications for morality. And as you shall see, all 3 are still profoundly influential in philosophy today. Their influence has extended to sociology, social philosophy, linguistics, literature, politics, moral philosophy and many other fields that indirectly shape how the world is perceived.