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A History of Philosophy 7: Modern Philosophy - Frederick Charles Copleston I've read the introduction to and most of the 3 chapters on Hegel in this volume.

The introduction is definitely interesting and worthwhile. He does a comparison/contrast with German Romanticism which I thought was helpful. He also gives a great discussion about how German Idealism as a whole can be seen as a result of Kant's work. These two historical narratives do a lot to make many of the common assumptions of the 3 main figures (Fichte, Schelling, and Hegel) clear and more comprehensible (particularly if you have studied Kant).

On the whole I found the material that is more specifically focused on Hegel to be useful as well. It is obviously and abridged account as it must be. It's a good next step from something like Singer's "very short introduction". Copleston raises more issues and is more interested in trying to give a philosophically defensible account of Hegel's philosophy even if it is meant for the student. He is clear though and his it is a thought provoking account. He is a sincere mind and takes the thinkers he writes about seriously. He clearly has a bit of a soft spot for Hegel but I'm not sure that's based on agreement.

On the other hand it's interesting to read this next to Marcuse. I feel both of them are sincere, serious scholars. That is I believe them to both have intellectual honesty and integrity. On the other hand they do have their respective points of view. So in Marcuse, the social is stressed. Part of the that obviously has to to with the subject of the book, but overall there is a definite "left Hegelian" Marxist emphasis. On the other hand, with Copleston, there is an emphasis on theological questions. Just as Marcuse wants you to see how radical Hegel was (as opposed to the right-Hegelian conservative approach) Copleston wants you to see how theologically minded Hegel was. Again, this isn't dishonesty at all in my opinion. It just exemplifies the way that interpretation works. The two serve as very useful counterpoints to eachother for exactly this reason. They both are attempting to interpret Hegel in a way that is fair to Hegel, but they both have differing interests and feelings about him.