Meinong’s theory of objects: An attempt at overcoming psychologism

Grazer Philosophische Studien 50 (1):87-112 (1995)

Abstract
I intend to take into account Meinong's theory of objects from a point of view allowed by the author himself, when he agrees that the proper "place" for such a doctrine is the theory of knowledge. According to this suggestion, I think it convenient to explain the doctrine at issue in the light of the definition of knowing as a "double" act, in which the object known is "in front o f the knowing act itself as something comparatively autonomous. From this point of view a comparison with Husserl's "pure logic" - as Meinong again suggests - as well as a valuation of the part played by our philosopher in their common Opposition to psychologism seem to be of interest.Pure logic seems to answer in the most adequate way the demands that induce Meinong to elaborate a theory of pure objects: such objects are taken into consideration as to their positivity and possibility founded on equally pure operations of a subject. At the same time pure logic provides us with a clue to the ambiguity of Außersein: as a matter of fact, Meinong, freeing himself from the prejudice in favor of what is actual, remains involved in what I would call a prejudice "in favor of what has being"; he thinks it necessary to resort to an assumption, that is to a simulation of being in order to explain our thinking of a non-being object. Furthermore according to him an assumpion is in general demanded in order to think of an object as to his so-being, that is of the outside-being object.There are two orders of questions: the first one regards the "formal" generality of the fundamental gnosiological problems, leaving out of consideration every "matter" of knowledge, the second refers to the gnosiological-phenomenological foundation of the concepts and of the laws of pure logic. They are absolutely inseparable, and yet strictly distinct. The first order should be the right place for the Außersein of pure objects
Keywords Analytic Philosophy
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DOI 10.5840/gps1995505
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