Edmund Husserl is regarded as the founder of transcendental phenomenology, one of the major traditions to emerge in twentieth-century philosophy. In this book Andrea Staiti unearths and examines the deep theoretical links between Husserl's phenomenology and the philosophical debates of his time, showing how his thought developed in response to the conflicting demands of Neo-Kantianism and life-philosophy. Drawing on the work of thinkers including Heinrich Rickert, Wilhelm Dilthey and Georg Simmel, as well as Husserl's writings on the natural and human (...) sciences that are not available in English translation, Staiti illuminates a crucial chapter in the history of twentieth-century philosophy and enriches our understanding of Husserl's thought. His book will interest scholars and students of Husserl, phenomenology, and twentieth-century philosophy more generally. (shrink)
In this paper I criticize Claude Romano’s recent characterization of Husserl’s phenomenology as a form of Cartesianism. Contra Romano, Husserl is not committed to the view that since individual things in the world are dubitable, then the world as a whole is dubitable. On the contrary, for Husserl doubt is a merely transitional phenomenon which can only characterize a temporary span of experience. Similarly, illusion is not a mode of experience in its own right but a retrospective way of characterizing (...) a span of experience. Therefore, Husserl cannot be plausibly characterized as either a disjunctivist or a conjunctivist. The common premise of both theories – namely, that perception and illusion are two classes of conscious acts standing on equal footing – is phenomenologically unsound. I propose to call Husserl’s theory a hermeneutical theory of perception, i.e., one that interprets perception as a temporal and self-correcting process. In the last part of the paper I argue that Husserl’s positive appraisal of Cartesian doubt is only pedagogical in nature. Husserl does not take Cartesian doubt to be practicable, but the attempt to doubt universally has the positive effect of revealing transcendental subjectivity as the subject matter of phenomenology. (shrink)
After the demise of German Idealism, Neo-Kantianism flourished as the defining philosophical movement of Continental Europe from the 1860s until the Weimar Republic. This collection of new essays by distinguished scholars offers a fresh examination of the many and enduring contributions that Neo-Kantianism has made to a diverse range of philosophical subjects. The essays discuss classical figures and themes, including the Marburg and Southwestern Schools, Cohen, Cassirer, Rickert, and Natorp's psychology. In addition they examine lesser-known topics, including the Neo-Kantian influence (...) on theory of law, Husserlian phenomenology, Simmel's study of Rembrandt, Cassirer's philosophy of science, Cohen's philosophy of religion in relation to Rawls and Habermas, and Rickert's theory of number. This rich exploration of a major philosophical movement will interest scholars and upper-level students of Kant, twentieth-century philosophy, continental philosophy, sociology, and psychology. (shrink)
In this paper I present and assess a controversy between Edmund Husserl and Heinrich Rickert on the nature of judgment, in order to bring to light the originality of Husserl's proposal concerning this important issue. In the first section I provide some context for Rickert's theory of judgment by sketching a reconstruction of nineteenth century logical theory and then proceed to introduce Rickert's view. I suggest that nineteenth century logic is characterized by a criticism of the traditional view that sees (...) categorial judgment as the essential form of judgment and the uniting and separating of ideas as sufficient for the constitution of a judgment. Hume inaugurates this criticism, but it finds its most mature expression in the work of Lotze, Brentano, and Rickert. Rickert, in particular, sees simple affirmation and negation of the transcendent value of truth as the essence of judgment. In the second section I present Husserl's criticism of Rickert. Husserl's criticism revolves around the distinction between simple judgments and the higher-order affirmative or negative stance we can adopt with respect to previously articulated simple judgments. Simple judgments register the mereological relation holding among something and one of its properties, and they do not entail an affirmative or negative stance. Their function is to constitute states of affairs drawing on concrete perceptual situations. Higher-order affirmation or negation occurs when we set out to revisit a foregoing simple judgment in order to confirm or disconfirm the veridicality of its proposed state of affairs. In the third part I suggest a diagnosis of the origin of the mistake in earlier theories. Simple judgments are easy to conflate with non-simple, higher-order judgmental stances because they have the same logical value and they cannot be seen without the aid of genuinely phenomenological reflection. In conclusion, I suggest that Husserl's analysis amounts to a vindication of categorial judgment in its traditional form ‘S is P’, which continues to maintain a phenomenological legitimacy even in the wake of Frege's canonical dismissal of subject and predicate. (shrink)
In this paper I explore the issue of how our personal life is given to us in experience as a whole to be actively shaped and determined. I examine in detail Husserl’s analysis of the kind of experience responsible for this achievement, which he terms Überschau and which thus far has never been addressed by scholars of phenomenology. First, I locate Überschau in the context of self-determination and highlight the difference between the unthematic pre-givenness of life in the phenomenon of (...) self-awareness and the actual, i.e. thematic givenness of life in acts of Überschau. Second, I contextualize Husserl’s discovery of Überschau in his analyses of ethical life and the possibility of a universal epoché. I argue that for Husserl the very possibility of ethical life and of phenomenology itself rest on the totalizing apprehension of one’s life rendered possible by Überschau. In the third section I spell out the essential characteristics of Überschau by contrasting this peculiar kind of consciousness with reproductive forms of consciousness such as recollection and expectation, which otherwise might be easily conflated with Überschau. In section four I reply to a possible objection to the very possibility of Überschau based on the consideration of the infinitely open stream of time-consciousness. I argue that the possibility of Überschau is tightly connected with the egological nature of consciousness as understood by Husserl. The ego does not coincide with its own conscious acts and thus enjoys a special vantage point on the totality of its own life. To conclude, I advance a speculative suggestion about the phenomenological origin of Überschau in the structure of self-awareness. This opens up a variety of possible lines of research that would connect Husserl with philosophers such as Augustine or Heidegger who are more immediately associated with the issue of personal life and its unity or lack thereof. (shrink)
In this paper I sketch a systematic reconstruction of Husserl’s fundamental concept of “attitude”. I first explore Husserl’s account with respect to the three faculties of intellect, will, and emotivity [Gemüt], which also define the three basic kinds of attitude. The attitude assumed by the subject plays at this level the important role of articulating and unifying, according to an overall direction, various underlying moments of a complex act. I then focus on the specific intellectual, viz. cognitive attitudes and highlight (...) the difference between the naturalistic attitude (which characterizes the natural sciences) and the personalistic attitude (which characterizes the human sciences). I then consider the notion of the natural attitude and argue that the personalistic attitude represents the systematic core of it. The natural attitude may be defined as the human attitude, i.e., as the attitude in which subjects posit themselves exclusively as human subjects belonging to the world , which is itself unceasingly posited as being. In the final part of the paper I explore the function of the phenomenological reduction insofar as it opens up a possibility of self-understanding that breaks with the natural, human self-apprehension and discloses subjectivity in its transcendental dimension. This opens up a radically new attitude, the phenomenological, which should not be confused with a first-person perspective within the framework of the natural attitude. (shrink)
This is the first complete critical commentary of Husserl s seminal work Ideas for a Pure Phenomenology and Phenomenological Philosophy. Leading international scholars offer a close reading, examining arguments and phenomenological descriptions, connecting them to Husserl s earlier and later works, and engaging important secondary sources. The book will be invaluable reading for scholars and students of phenomenology and 20th century philosophy.".
In this paper, I take a fresh look at Husserl's key distinction between objectifying and non‐objectifying acts, which roughly amounts to a distinction between presentational and evaluative experiences. My goal is to provide a clear and unified reconstruction of Husserl's argument for the thesis that non‐objectifying acts are necessarily founded in objectifying acts, a thesis that is highly controversial in and beyond Husserlian scholarship. In the first section, I reconstruct Husserl's view in the Logical Investigations, according to which only objectifying (...) acts establish an independent intentional relation to their objects, and argue that it is justified by the positing function of objectifying acts. In the second section, I address two problematic interpretations of this view and, after criticizing them, I present what I take to be Husserl's core argument for his position. In the third section, I turn to the revision of the view of the Logical Investigations that Husserl proposes in the wake of his transcendental turn, especially in Ideas I and II. On Husserl's revised view, all acts are objectifying, including emotional acts [Gemütsakte]. This revision has led scholars to consider Husserl's view aporetic. I propose an alternative interpretation that dispels the purported aporia. I conclude with some remarks on the costs and benefits of my reading, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of Husserl's view in general. (shrink)
In this article I argue that new light can be shed on the analytic/Continental divide by looking at the controversy on the nature of philosophy in late 19th-century/early-20th-century Germany. The controversy is between those thinkers who understand philosophy primarily as a worldview [ Weltanschauung] and those who insist that it should be understood as a science [ Wissenschaft]. The positions of the two main representatives of the two camps, Wilhelm Dilthey and Heinrich Rickert, are presented and assessed. Their mutual disagreement (...) on what philosophy ought to be reflects in a striking way some of the major tensions existing between the analytic and the Continental camps today. At the end of the article I formulate a historical hypothesis about how the Wissenschaft/Weltanschauung controversy petrified into the analytic/Continental divide. (shrink)
In this article I argue that new light can be shed on the analytic/Continental divide by looking at the controversy on the nature of philosophy in late 19th-century/early-20th-century Germany. The controversy is between those thinkers who understand philosophy primarily as a worldview [Weltanschauung] and those who insist that it should be understood as a science [Wissenschaft]. The positions of the two main representatives of the two camps, Wilhelm Dilthey and Heinrich Rickert, are presented and assessed. Their mutual disagreement on what (...) philosophy ought to be reflects in a striking way some of the major tensions existing between the analytic and the Continental camps today. At the end of the article I formulate a historical hypothesis about how the Wissenschaft/Weltanschauung controversy petrified into the analytic/Continental divide. (shrink)
This article presents and discusses Sebastian Luft’s recent interpretation of Husserl’s late phenomenology. Luft argues that Husserl envisioned a hermeneutic phenomenology of the cultural world, thereby articulating a project that can be considered complementary with Cassirer’s philosophy of symbolic forms. Three of Luft’s claims, in particular, are assessed and criticized: the Cartesian Husserl and the life-world Husserl pursue two separate agendas; Husserl’s genetic phenomenology is fundamentally compatible with Paul Natorp’s project of a reconstructive psychology; Husserl’s late work is oriented towards (...) hermeneutical understanding of the world of culture. (shrink)
In this paper I discuss Jaspers’ theory of worldviews with regard to the contemporary problem of naturalism. In particular, I consider the frequent characterization of naturalism as a worldview. First, I situate Jaspers’ conception of worldviews in the context of the philosophical debate of his time. I then turn to Jaspers’ distinction between substantial worldviews and derivative shapes of worldviews and present his construal of naturalism as a derivative shape of what he calls the sensory- spatial Weltbild. I then argue (...) that contemporary naturalism still fits Jaspers’ description and can thus be considered a derivative shape, rather than a genuine worldview in its own right. I draw on some writings by Heinrich Rickert and Wilhelm Dilthey to further substantiate my claim. I conclude by arguing that if naturalism wishes to present itself as a worldview it should orient itself toward our human experience of nature. (shrink)
In this paper I argue that the primacy of the present in Husserl’s philosophy is not an unquestioned ballast inherited from the tradition of metaphysics but rather a genuinely phenomenological discovery. First, I explore the present of things and argue that the phenomenological primacy of the present in this domain should be understood in terms of what Husserl calls “affection.” Strictly speaking originary affection and associative syntheses (as the most basic phenomena for the givenness of things) can only take place (...) in the present or starting from the present. Second, I consider the present in the egological sphere and analyze its primacy for both the transcendental and the personal ego. Finally, I move to the experience of the other and argue that only the perception of the other’s body in the present gives rise to an authentic empathic experience as the experience of the other’s governing in his own body. (shrink)
Dieter Lohmar, Phänomenologie der schwachen Phantasie. Untersuchungen der Psychologie, Cognitive Science, Neurologie und Phänomenologie zur Funktion der Phantasie in der Wahrnehmung Content Type Journal Article DOI 10.1007/s10743-010-9069-3 Authors Andrea Staiti, Boston College Department of Philosophy Chestnut Hill MA USA Journal Husserl Studies Online ISSN 1572-8501 Print ISSN 0167-9848 Journal Volume Volume 26 Journal Issue Volume 26, Number 2.
Despite an ever-growing scholarly interest in the work of Edmund Husserl and in the history of the phenomenological movement, much of the contemporaneous scholarly context surrounding Husserl's work remains shrouded in darkness. While much has been written about the critiques of Husserl's work associated with Heidegger, Levinas, and Sartre, comparatively little is known of the debates that Husserl was directly involved in. The present volume addresses this gap in scholarship by presenting a comprehensive selection of contemporaneous responses to Husserl's work. (...) Ranging in date from 1906 to 1917, these texts bookend Husserl's landmark Ideas for a Pure Phenomenology and Phenomenological Philosophy. The selection encompasses essays that Husserl responded to directly in the Ideas I, as well as a number of the critical and sympathetic essays that appeared in the wake of its publication. Significantly, the present volume also includes Husserl's subsequent responses to his critics. All of the texts included have been translated into English for the first time, introducing the reader to a wide range of long-neglected material that is highly relevant to contemporary debates regarding the meaning and possibility of phenomenology. (shrink)
Frederick Beiser’s book is a valuable contribution to the revival of neo-Kantian studies characterizing the past few years: a trend that is blowing the dust off this important, yet hitherto neglected chapter of the history of philosophy. The quality of Beiser’s writing is excellent throughout, showing mastery of an impressive range of sources and treating with equal competence a variety of topics in epistemology, metaphysics, ethics, and philosophy of religion.In part 1, Beiser advances his most original historical claim about neo-Kantianism. (...) He argues that the movement has its origin in what he calls the “lost tradition”, that is, the empirical-psychological approach to Kant’s transcendental philosophy.. (shrink)
_ Source: _Volume 46, Issue 2, pp 277 - 295 In this paper I argue that in Husserl’s _Ideas I_ there is a seeming contradiction between the characterization of pure consciousness as the _residue_ of the performance of the phenomenological reduction and the claim that in the natural attitude consciousness is taken to be an entity is the world. This creates a puzzle regarding the positional status of consciousness in the natural attitude. After reviewing some possible options to solve this (...) puzzle in the existing literature, I claim that the positional status of conscious experiences in the natural attitude is best characterized as _unsettled_. The act that _settles_ the positional status of conscious experiences is reflection. In reflection, experiences are posited as beings, either in a psychological or in a phenomenological key. I conclude by arguing that the problem of positing is of paramount importance to understand correctly Husserl’s claim that phenomenology is _voraussetzungslos_. (shrink)
In questo articolo intendo presentare e discutere le tesi avanzate da Husserl contro il naturalismo epistemologico e psicologico in La filosofia come scienza rigorosa. Intendo mostrare come la sua critica si rivolga a posizioni generalmente più estreme rispetto alle varianti del naturalismo oggi dibattute; e tuttavia le tesi husserliane hanno implicazioni interessanti per la discussione contemporanea. In primo luogo, egli mostra come vi sia un nesso importante tra naturalismo epistemologico e naturalismo psicologico. In secondo luogo, egli mostra come una versione (...) robusta di naturalismo epistemologico indebolisca se stesso, non riuscendo a traslare la cogenza logica in termini psicologici. In terzo luogo – e questo è il tratto più importante per la discussione contemporanea – egli attacca il cartesianesimo in quanto forma di naturalismo psicologico per via del considerare la psiche come sostanza. Contro questa posizione Husserl afferma la necessità di formulare nuovi obiettivi epistemici per le ricerche sulla coscienza, sostenendo che il fattore di maggiore interesse circa la coscienza non sia la sua fatticità empirica, bensì la sua funzione trascendentale, che garantisce accesso conoscitivo a ogni tipo di oggetto. Lo studio di questa funzione richiede un metodo specifico, da non confondersi con i metodi empirici. Nella parte conclusiva intendo sostenere come le analisi husserliane offrano nuove prospettive sulla struttura della coscienza, di cui oggi si sente il bisogno, ma anche argomenti persuasivi contro le incerte speculazioni metafisiche circa il rapporto tra mente e corpo. (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 ..
Cet article présente la philosophie des sciences de Max Frischeisen-Köhler, conçue comme une réponse critique aux néo-kantiens. Frischeisen-Köhler tire son enseignement à la fois de son professeur Wilhelm Dilthey et d’Edmund Husserl. Dans les quatre premières parties j’examine la critique que Frischeisen-Köhler adresse au néo-kantisme de l’École de Marbourg et à celui de l’École de Baden. Cette critique défend l’idée que la réalité joue un rôle dans la cognition en tant qu’élément totalement indépendant que la cognition doit reconnaître et qui (...) ne peut jamais se développer en dehors de sa propre légalité. Dans la cinquième section, je m’attache à la phénoménologie de Frischeisen-Köhler. Sa thèse principale est que la réalité est expérimentée comme telle dans l’action, de sorte que notre conscience de la réalité ne provient pas de considérations théoriques sur les causes hypothétiques de nos sensations, mais de nos activités dans le monde en tant qu’agents. La science part de cette expérience pré-scientifique de la réalité. Je conclus par une critique de la distinction que Frischeisen-Köhler établit entre conscience en général et subjectivité individuelle d’un point de vue phénoménologique. (shrink)