Brentano’s position in the history of philosophy is often illustrated by the long list of important philosophers who have studied with him. Yet, the relations between Brentano and his students were not always without friction. In the present article I argue that Brentano’s students were most attracted by his conception of a scientific philosophy, which promised to leave the received tradition (German Idealism) behind and to mark the beginning of a new period in the history of philosophy – a project (...) they were happy to be part of. Brentano’s work remained in an important sense fragmentary, however, and could, thus, not provide the inner unity that would have been essential for forming a compact school or a unified philosophical movement. (shrink)
Brentano’s introduction of the concept of intentionality into contemporary philosophy was indebted to scholastic sources. Among these, Suárez has not been sufficiently addressed, even though his idea of transcendental relation is relied upon by Brentano to describe the intentional relation. In addition, in his examination of being as truth in Suárez, Brentano manifests his assumption of the principle of immanence. Finally, this article argues that, even in his reist period, Brentano continued to understand knowledge as a relation.
The paper aims to investigate some aspects of Ernst Mach’s epistemology in the light of the problem of human orientation in relation to the world (Weltorientierung), which is a main topic of Western philosophy since Kant. As will be argued, Mach has been concerned with that problem, insofar as he developed an original pragmatist epistemology. In order to support my argument, I firstly investigate whether Mach defended a nominalist or a realist account of knowledge and compare his view to those (...) elaborated by other pragmatist thinkers, such as W. James, H. Vaihinger and H. Poincaré. Secondly, the question of what does it mean, for Mach, to orient ourselves in science is addressed. Finally, it will be argued that, although Mach tried to keep his epistemology restricted to a mere operational and economical account of science, that question involves the wider plane of practical philosophy. (shrink)
L'articolo si propone di accostarsi alla figura di Ernst Mach seguendo la stessa metodologia storico-critica da lui utilizzata. Essa permette di contestualizzarne la figura e l'opera in un momento significativo della storia della filosofia occidentale, ma anche di ridefinire alcuni concetti fondamentali del suo pensiero. Scopo ulteriore della ricerca è di osservare da una diversa prospettiva la questione relativa al valore filosofico del lavoro epistemologico di Mach, mostrando come esso possa essere affermato senza bisogno di uscire dai confini da lui (...) stesso tracciati. (shrink)
Richard Dedekind’s theorem 66 states that there exists an infinite set. Its proof invokes such apparently nonmathematical notions as the thought-world and the self. This article discusses the content and context of Dedekind’s proof. It is suggested that Dedekind took the notion of the thought-world from Hermann Lotze. The influence of Kant and Bernard Bolzano on the proof is also discussed, and the reception of the proof in the mathematical and philosophical literature is covered in detail.
In this paper I will introduce the reader to Carl Stumpf’s philosophy through a discussion of a problem about simultaneous perception of several objects. This problem is at the heart of several of his works and therefore well suited for my purpose.
Franz Brentano’s works are not just full of deep and innovative insights into mind, world and values. His views also turned out to be highly influential upon several generations of students, who made them the basis of their own philosophical investigations, giving rise to what is known as the Brentano School (Albertazzi et al. 1996; Fisette & Fréchette 2007). In this chapter, I give a bird’s eye view of the Brentano School from a rather historical perspective. My leading hypothesis is (...) that one crucial factor explaining the rise of the school is Brentano’s unique strategy, within the academic context of the time, to promote the revival of philosophy as a rigorous science. After a brief introduction, I reconstruct the three main phases in the school’s development, namely Brentano’s teaching in Würzburg (1866-73), his teaching in Vienna (1874-95), and Anton Marty’s teaching in Prague (1880-1913). (shrink)
The purpose of this book is to highlight Carl Stumpf's contributions to philosophy and to assess some of the aspects of his work. This book brings together several specialists of Stumpf and the school of Franz Brentano, and includes fourteen original studies (in English and German) on the various aspects of Stumpf's philosophy, and some of his unpublished writings. This book is divided into four sections, and also includes a general introduction on the reception and actuality of Stumpf's philosophy. The (...) first section examines the historical sources of his philosophy, the second examines some of the central themes of his work and the third examines his relationship to other philosophers. The fourth section consists of notes taken by Husserl during Stumpf's lectures on metaphysics in Halle, Stumpf's introduction to the edition of his correspondence with Brentano, which he prepared in 1929, and some important letters pertaining to this correspondence. This book also provides a comprehensive bibliography of Stumpf's works. (shrink)
How does it feel to be a worm? No doubt, it feels Kafkaesque. The metamorphosis (1915) is a story of an ordinary man, Gregor Samsa, who wakes up one morning as an ungeheures Ungeziefer or ‘giant vermin’. Is this only a bodily change, or has his mind been transformed as well? And how do the people around him cope with this transformation? In this paper, I am going to examine these issues by using tools from Franz Brentano’s (1838–1917) and Anton (...) Marty’s (1847–1914) philosophy of mind and language. Rumour has it that Kafka’s stories were not only products of his own troubled soul, but were also profoundly influenced by the work of these two philosophers. In my paper, I will cover the following issues: the influence of Franz Brentano on Anton Marty and a fortiori on Franz Kafka (1883–1924), who was Marty’s student in Prague (and in this way, saying something about the School of Brentano); Brentano’s and Marty’s theory of correct and incorrect emotions, and its traces in Kafka’s The metamorphosis; Marty’s philosophy of language and communication as reflected in Kafka’s writings; and Brentano’s reism in comparison to Kafka’s nominalism, on the basis of Roberto Calasso’s interpretation of Kafka. (shrink)
This study examines the place of the Philosophical Society of the University of Vienna (1888-1938) in the evolution of the history of philosophy in Austria up to the establishment of the Vienna Circle in 1929. I will examine three aspects of the relationship between the Austrian members of the Vienna Circle and the Philosophical Society which has been emphasized by several historians of the Vienna Circle: the first aspect concerns the theory of a first Vienna Circle formed mainly by H. (...) Hahn, P. Frank and O. Neurath; the second aspect is the contention that the missing link between the Vienna Circle and the Bolzano tradition in Austria is Alois Höfler, a student of Brentano and Meinong; I will finally examine the link they established between the annexation of the Philosophical Society to the Kant-Gesellschaft in 1927 and the founding of the Vienna Circle in 1929. I will argue that this institution played a key role in the history of philosophy in Austria and is partly responsible for the formation of the Vienna Circle. (shrink)
In §12 of his 1837 magnum opus, the Wissenschaftslehre, Bolzano remarks that “In the new logic textbooks one reads almost constantly that ‘in logic one must consider not the material of thought but the mere form of thought, for which reason logic deserves the title of a purely formal science’” (WL §12, 46).1 The sentence Bolzano quotes is his own summary of others’ philosophical views; he goes on to cite Jakob, Hoffbauer, Metz, and Krug as examples of thinkers who held (...) that logic abstracts from the matter of thought and considers only its form. Although Bolzano does not mention Kant by name here, Kant does of course hold that “pure general logic”, what Bolzano would consider logic in the traditional sense (the theory of propositions, representations, inferences, etc.), is formal. As Kant remarks in the Introduction to the 2nd edition of Kritik der reinen Vernunft , (pure general) logic is “justified in abstracting – is indeed obliged to abstract – from all objects of cognition and all of their differences; and in logic, therefore, the understanding has to do with nothing further than itself and its own form” (KrV, Bix).2. (shrink)
Ce numéro thématique de la revue Philosophiques est consacré aux Conférences Hugues Leblanc qui ont eu lieu du 1er au 3 avril 2010 au Département de philosophie de l'Université du Québec à Montréal. À cette occasion, le conférencier invité était Kevin Mulligan, titulaire de la chaire de philosophie analytique au Département de philosophie de l'Université de Genève, qui a prononcé trois conférences sous le titre " Wittgenstein vs ses prédécesseurs austro-allemands ", publiées dans ce numéro. Mulligan y développe un de (...) ses thèmes historiques de prédilection, à savoir la dette de Wittgenstein, dans ses travaux sur l'esprit et le langage, à l'endroit de ses prédécesseurs austro-allemands. Comme le veut la formule des conférences Hugues Leblanc, nous avons réuni quelques collègues afin de discuter de quelques-uns des aspects des travaux du conférencier invité et nous avons ajouté, pour compléter ce numéro de Philosophiques, quelques articles originaux portant également sur d'autres aspects des travaux de Mulligan. On peut regrouper l'ensemble de ces contributions sous quatre des grands thèmes exploités par Mulligan en philosophie : le domaine de l'ontologie (incluant les relations, les tropes, les états de choses et les vérifacteurs), le domaine de la philosophie de l'esprit, celui des émotions et des valeurs, et enfin le thème historique de la philosophie austro-allemande, de Bolzano à Wittgenstein en passant par M. Scheler et la phénoménologie de Munich. Faute de pouvoir rendre compte dans cette préface de l'ensemble de ces riches contributions à ce numéro de Philosophiques, je me contenterai de renvoyer le lecteur aux résumés, préparés par les auteurs de ces contributions, qui précèdent chacun des articles. (shrink)
In this article we will address the issue whether and in how far Anton Marty had a significant influence on the development of the phenomenological movement. As “the phenomenological movement” is not a clearly defined and circumscribed notion, we need to provide an appropriate context for any comparison. The phenomenological movement grew out of the School of Brentano and we take this larger whole as our starting point. Since Marty did not found his own school or movement, but remained a (...) Brentanist, it is quite difficult to identify a clear influence of Marty on the phenomenological movement that would not be intermingled with a general Brentanist background. A specifically Martian influence could perhaps mainly be found in the philosophy of language. We will look at Marty’s and Husserl’s shared background, mutual criticisms and common legacy in order to evaluate the significance of any influence there might have been. (shrink)
The paper is a detailed reconstruction of Bernard Bolzano’s account of merely possible objects. According to Bolzano, there are some objects which are merely possible. They are neither denizens of space and time nor members of the causal order, but they could have been so. Examples are merely possible persons, mountains etc., objects which are neither actual nor persons or mountains, but which could have been both. Bolzano’s views are contrasted with the theory of Alexius Meinong, and it is shown (...) that they have a modern counterpart in the accounts of merely possible objects that were developed by Bernard Linsky & Ed Zalta, and by Timothy Williamson. (shrink)
For philosophers interested in ontological issues, the writings of the important figures of Austrian philosophy in the nineteenth and early twentieth century contain many buried treasures to rediscover. Bernard Bolzano, Franz Brentano, Alexius Meinong, and Edmund Husserl, to name just four grand names of that period, were highly aware of the importance of a feasible ontology for many of the philosophical questions they addressed throughout their works.
Although an important part of the origins of analytic philosophy can be traced back to philosophy in Austria in the first part of the twentieth century, remarkably little is known about the specific contribution made by Austrian philosophy and philosophers. In The Austrian Contribution to Analytic Philosophy prominent analytic philosophers take a fresh look at the roots of analytic philosophy in the thought of influential but often overlooked Austrian philosophers, including Brentano, Meinong, Bolzano, Husserl, and Witasek. The contributors to this (...) volume investigate central topics in theoretical philosophy, such as intentionality, consciousness, memory, attributes, and truth as well as political philosophy and aesthetics. This original collection will be of interest to anyone studying the origins of analytic philosophy as well as contemporary debates in philosophy of language, metaphysics and mind. (shrink)
Does logic describe something or not? If not, is it a normative or practical discipline? Is there a radical division between the practical or normative level and the theoretical or descriptive level? A discipline is theoretical, we may say, if its main propositions contain descriptive expressions, such as “is” or “have”, but no normative expressions, such as “ought”, “ought not” or “may”. A discipline is normative if its main propositions are of the form “it ought to be”. Theoretical propositions express (...) what is, whereas practical propositions express what should be. So a theoretical discipline is descriptive and a normative discipline is prescriptive, but what does a theoretical discipline describe? (shrink)
Quine's well-known ‘Two Dogmas of Empiricism’ (1951) plays a key role in the debate about the analytic-synthetic distinction. Taking to task the ideas of Carnap in particular, Quine shows that logical positivism works with a concept of scientific rationality that is based dogmatically on, among other things, the opposition analytic-synthetic.
This is a presentation of Bolzano's ideas on logic, logical semantics, ontology, proof theory, the foundations of mathematics, and certain aspects of the philosophy of nature. Bolzano's world view was a universal one in the sense that philosophy, mathematics, physics, and metaphysics should build upon the same logical foundation. In the pursuit of this encyclopaedic point of view he already recognized many of the essential things to come in logic and the foundations of mathematics.
The term ‘Continental philosophy’ designates not philosophy on the continent of Europe as a whole, but rather a selective slice of Franco-German philosophy. Through a critical analysis of the arguments advanced by Otto Neurath, the paper addresses the issue of why Austrian philosophers in particular are not counted in the pantheon of Continental philosophers. Austrian philosophy is marked by the predominance of philosophical analysis and of the philosophy of science. The paper concludes that it is not Austria which is the (...) special case when seen against the background of contemporary mainstream philosophy, but rather Germany and France. (shrink)
Barry Smith has written a book about an important topic in philosophy and its recent history, concerning the legacy of Franz Brentano. “The Legacy of Franz Brentano” is also its subtitle, a subtitle much more revealing of its contents than its title: Austrian Philosophy. That title makes one expect either a general picture of philosophy in Austria, past and/or present, or an account of what Rudolf Haller has called Austrian Philosophy, a term that refers to its golden age, to a (...) tradition whose main characteristics are, according to Haller, empiricism, proximity to science, and a concern with language. Smith includes these properties in his characterization of the legacy of Brentano, and adds quite appropriately for that legacy “a concern with ontological structure” and “an overriding interest in the relation of macro-phenomena ... to ... micro-phenomena which underlie or are associated with them”. Smith is quite aware that this addition does not hold for the tradition of Austrian philosophy, since he opposes it to a German tradition, and delineates the former “by means of a list beginning with Bolzano, Mach and Meinong, and ending with Wittgenstein, Neurath, and Popper”. (shrink)
Wie entsteht eine Wahrnehmung? Wir betrachten einen derzeit nahezu vergessenen philosophischen wie psychologischen Ansatz, der eine solche Theorie entwickelte. Die Vorgeschichte dieser Theorie beginnt bei Alexius Meinongs Relationstheorie (1882) und dessen frühen Bemühungen zur Psychologie. Christian von Ehrenfels, aufbauend auf Meinongs Vorarbeiten sowie Ernst Machs Analyse der Empfindungen von 1886, gibt der Theoriegenese 1890 durch seine Arbeit über Gestaltqualitäten starken Auftrieb. Die Grazer Schule übernimmt das Thema unter dem Aspekt: Sind Gestalten als Ganzes erfaßbar, oder werden sie auf der Basis (...) elementarer Empfindungen erst durch einen psychischen Akt produziert? Anhand der geometrisch-optischen Täuschungen gehen zunächst Stephan Witasek und später Vittorio Benussi dieser Frage ab 1894 auch experimentell nach. Zunächst kann ausgeschlossen werden, daß solche Täuschungen Urteilstäuschungen sind, daß sie also Vorstellungstäuschungen sein müssen. Als wichtig für die psychologische Theorie der Vorstellungsproduküon erweist sich Meinongs philosophische Konzeption der Gegenstände höherer Ordnung. Rudolf Ameseder legt 1904 eine gegenstandstheoretische Skizze der Produktionstheorie vor. Benussi zeigt ebenfalls 1904 wiederum am Beispiel der optischen Täuschungen, daß diese keine Empfindungstäuschungen sind (was Witasek angenommen hatte), sondern Produktionstäuschungen. Damit ist experimentell belegt, daß es psychische Produktionen gibt. (shrink)
Recent work on Austrian philosophy has revealed, hitherto, unsuspected links between Vienna circle positivism on the one hand, and the thought of Franz Brentano and his circle on the other. the paper explores these links, casting light also on the Polish analytic movement, on the development of gestalt psychology, and on the work of Schlick and Neurath.
The first part of this paper summarizes what I take to be the most important doctrines of Brentano's philosophy. The second part investigates the possible meanings of the term 'Austrian philosophy'. The third part attempts to say something about Brentano's place in Austrian philosophy — whatever that may be --, while the fourth part focuses on a problem in which I am especially interested. The paper closes with a proposal for what the expression 'Austrian philosophy' could mean.
The first part of this paper summarizes what I take to be the most important doctrines of Brentano's philosophy. The second part investigates the possible meanings of the term 'Austrian philosophy'. The third part attempts to say something about Brentano's place in Austrian philosophy -- whatever that may be --, while the fourth part focuses on a problem in which I am especially interested. The paper closes with a proposal for what the expression 'Austrian philosophy' could mean.