Ever since the proposal of Giovanni Reale, it has been useful to distinguish three “paradigms,” or models of “normal science,” in Thomas Kuhn’s sense, in the history of Platonic scholarship, each of which are relatively distinct from the others in their historical succession: the Neoplatonic model which persisted into modern times; the “Romantic” model which replaced it and whose foundations were formulated around 1800 by Friedrich Schlegel and Friedrich Schleiermacher, and which was until recently the guiding model for history, philology and philosophy; and lastly the model that takes both the literary and indirect Platonic traditions, integrates them, uses them to supplement one another, and so in part preserves and in part modifies the second model by a perspectival “paradigm shift”. The new research program justified itself in view of the surplus of anomalies left by the old program, which had to leave certain central portions of the tradition unexplained or else forcefully reinterpret them. Meanwhile, the new program promised to progressively work off the explanatory deficit. The new program was also able to emerge as an alternative because the explanatory abilities of the old program had visibly declined into a state of stagnation and exhaustion. That program had not achieved the hoped-for explanatory goals: neither the extraction of the philosophical content of Platonic dialogues by an analysis of form, nor the evaluation of the relative chronology of the dialogues for the inner development of their philosophical thought.
Keywords Contemporary Philosophy  Continental Philosophy  History of Philosophy
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ISBN(s) 0093-4240
DOI 10.5840/gfpj19992122
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