New Vico Studies 22:33-47 (2004)

This article argues that Vico’s theory of history should be construed as an ontological constructionist account as opposed to its usual realist interpretation. In support of this interpretation I draw upon two important concepts issuing from the body of the Scienza nuova: the notion of ‘‘storia’’ and the verum ipsum factum principle. Both concepts are not only consistent with an ontological constructionist interpretation of Vico’s theory of history but function as powerful explanatory devices in the context of such an interpretation. I show the advantage this interpretation holds for overcoming one of the main charges brought against the Scienza nuova when it is interpreted as presenting a realist conception of history. In highlighting the possibility and, indeed, textual advantages of construing Vico’s theory of history as an ontological constructionist account I claim that Vico may have anticipated the constructionist tradition by some 200 years and may be considered as the founder of constructionism in the philosophy of history
Keywords History of Philosophy  Major Philosophers
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ISBN(s) 0733-9542
DOI 10.5840/newvico2004221
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