Central to Eugen Fink's distinctive understanding of the context of ethical engagement is his way of thinking about being in the world. From Fink's perspective we can see that Western metaphysics, and contemporary philosophical ethics, has forgotten the world. In its attempt to achieve objectivity, metaphysics has sought a vantage point that could be a view from nowhere. If the world is remembered, it is misconstrued to be a mere frame or container for objects and experiences. This has led (...) to a conception of the ethical subject as a rational, autonomous individual who merely happens to be in the world. In failing to consider the meaning of being in the world, philosophy has rendered ethics nihilistic. Fink seeks .. (shrink)
Eugen Bleuler, in 1911, renamed the group of mental disorders with poor prognosis which Emil Kraepel in had called ``dementia praecox'' ``group of schizophrenias'',because for him the splitting of personality was the main symptom.Biographical, scientific and methodological influences on Bleuler's concept of schizophrenia are shown with special reference to Kraepelin and Freud.Bleuler was a passionate and very experienced clinician. He lived with his patients, taking care of them and writing down his observations. Methodologically he was an empiricist and an (...) eclecticist with a wide reading knowledge.In an impaired association of ideas, in disordered affectivity, in marked ambivalence and autism Bleuler saw the main symptoms of schizophrenia. For him these so-called pathological phenomena actually seemed to be only exaggerations of normal psychic functions. So there were only a quantitative, not a qualitative difference between schizophrenia and normal psychic processes and studies on schizophrenic ``pathology'' –seen as a disturbance, not as a disease – might analogously illustrate normal psychic reactions and vice versa.In etiology as well as in therapy Bleuler took into account psychological and (neuro)physiological(somatic) mechanisms – thus combining organicism and dynamic psychiatry and coming very close to modern concepts, e.g. the one of stress and vulnerability. Bleuler's main merit is the stressing of an idiographic ``understanding'' of the patient and a plausible and subtle explanation of schizophrenia which helped to reduce the alienation of the affected persons. (shrink)
Karl Eugen Müller's contribution to the development of the algebra of logic is perhaps the most important part of his scientific work. Müller, who became Gymnasialprofessor after his university studies, was a student of Ernst Schröder's friend, the mathematician Jakob Lüroth. As a result of publishing two papers on problems related to Schröder's monumental Vorlesungen iiber die Algebra der Logik, Müller was commissioned by the Deutsche Mathematiker- Vereinigung with the editing of the unpublished parts of the Vorlesungen from Schröder's (...) Nachla?. Müller worked on Schröder's papers until 1910, but did not bring this work to a conclusion. Müller's own Nachla?, including those parts of Schröder's papers still in his possession, was destroyed in Frankfurt a.M. in 1943, so there remains no hope of finding through Müller any part of the missing Nachla? of Schröder. (shrink)
L’ample volume de Bruzina (dorénavant BE) constitue le point de confluence d’un long travail théorique et philologique de l’auteur relatif à l’œuvre d’Eugen Fink. Ce labeur, d’une part, raccorde et approfondit les thématiques affrontées dans de nombreux articles. Il ajoute d’autre part de nouveaux éléments à la mosaïque extraordinairement complexe et intriquée constituée durant les dix années de collaboration entre Husserl et Fink à Fribourg. Les caractéristiques qui sautent aux yeux, dès la ..
This essay analyzes one of Germany's former premier research institutions for biomedical research, the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Anthropology, Human Heredity and Eugenics (KWIA) as a test case for the way in which politics and human heredity served as resources for each other during the Third Reich. Examining the KWIA from this perspective brings us a step closer to answering the questions at the heart of most recent scholarship concerning the biomedical community under the swastika: (1) How do we explain (...) why the vast majority of German human geneticists and eugenicists were willing to work for the National Socialist state and, at the very least, legitimized its exterminationist racial policy; and (2) what accounts for at least some of Germany's most renowned medically trained professionals' involvement in forms of morally compromised science that wholly transcend the bounds of normal scientific practice? Although a complete answer to this question must await an examination of other German biological research centers, the present study suggests that during the Nazi period the symbiotic relationship between human genetics and politics served to radicalize both. The dynamic between the science of human heredity and Nazi politics changed the research practice of some of the biomedical sciences housed at the KWIA. It also simultaneously made it easier for the Nazi state to carry out its barbaric racial program leading, finally, to the extermination of millions of so-called racial undesirables. (shrink)
In America by the 1930s, albino rats had become a kind of generic standard in research on physiology and behavior that de-emphasized diversity across species. However, prior to about 1915, the early work of many of the pioneer rat researchers in America and in central Europe reflected a strong interest in species differences and a deep regard for diversity. These scientists sought broad, often medical, generality, but their quest for generality using a standard animal did not entail a de-emphasis of (...) organic diversity. They chose white rats as test animals for two primary reasons. First, rats develop very slowly. They therefore made features of physiological, neural and psychological development accessible to the experimental method at a time when its application to the phenomena of development remained controversial. Secondly, rats were thought to have unusually strong sex drives. For this reason they became central to the experimental study of sexuality and, in the work of the reproductive physiologist Eugen Steinach, sexual development. Connections among three research institutes that stressed experimental approaches to the study of brain and development demonstrate the importance of the rat's institutional role. As the emphasis on experimentation in the study of development grew, two of these institutes bred rats to provide uniform materials. Eventually, however, their reasons for selecting rats were lost; and the ready availability of a uniform test animal led to a shift in scientists' presumptions about diversity, as the standard rat became a tool for assuring generality. (shrink)