The article introduces a virtually unknown text by Fichte dating from April 1808, entitled Since 1 April 1808. After the Addresses to the German Nation and first published only in 1997. In it Fichte sets out to chart the new course to be adopted in the later presentations of his prima philosophy, that is the Wissenschaftslehre, which were to be given in four separate successive lecture courses at the University of Berlin between 1810 and 1814. The article puts the text from 1808 in the overall context of the presentational development of the Wissenschaftslehre. The primary focus is on the transitional character of the text from 1808 and on its project of fusing key features of the Jena presentations of the Wissenschaftslehre (1794-95 and 1796-99) with those from the early Berlin years (chiefly 1804-05) in order to prepare the way for the final presentations in the later Berlin years. A further focus of the article is on Fichte’s practice of couching knowledge in visual metaphors, a striking example of which are the visual-vital figures featured in the posthumous text of 1808.
Keywords: Johann Gottlieb Fichte, Wissenschaftslehre, system, the I, life, knowledge