Fouillée, Alfred Jules Emile

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Alfred Jules Emile Fouillée (älfrĕd´ zhül āmēl´ fōōyā´), 1838–1912, self-educated French philosopher and sociologist. Until 1875, when he retired, he was a teacher at various French universities. Fouillée regarded it as his particular work to "reconcile idealism and naturalism." To achieve this synthesis of Platonism and modern science he developed the conception of idées-forces, in which ideas are inseparable from action. This motor theory of consciousness makes ideas the agent of change and progress. Fouillée expanded this idea of self-consciousness into a metaphysics (L'Avenir de la metaphysique, 1889). In The Sphere of Sociology and Ethics he stressed the interdependence of the individual and society. Chief among his works are Critique des systemes de morale contemporaine (1883), L'Evolutionnisme des idées-forces (1890), and La Psychologie des idées-forces (1893).