Saturday, January 3, 2015

Yet Another Influence on Objective Knowledge, Dating 1981 - 2002.

Suggestions of the outline of categorical deduction in the work of Paul Ricoeur (phenomenologist, critic of phenomenology): (1) "The idea of foundation is rather that which secures the equivalence and convergence of the ways (logical, Cartesian, psychological, historico-teleological, etc.)" (Part I, section 1, parentheses his) (Phen. Reader, p. 580). (2) "Thus elucidation... requries that meaning be submitted to a genuine form of work" (Part II, section 2) (Phen. Reader p. 594). However, he describes this as "less contingent" not more, and not involving vast contingencies. (3) Ricoeur quotes Husserl about "sustaining a universal" and then goes on to talk about how "this interpretive core assures the 'representative' commonality of the two intended meanings." (Part II. sec. 2) (Phen. Reader, p. 595) Surely he isn't talking about categorical deduction? But he later explains that what he means is the "transition from one apprehension to the other" --- a process similar to an analog computer. (4). Finally, Ricoeur says: "Hence the fixed meanings and the contents of stable expressions must be substituted for fluctuating meanings and subjective expressions. The task is dictated by the ideal of univocity and governed by the axiom of the unbounded range of objective reason" (italics his) (Part II, section 2) (Phen. Reader, p. 596). Had Ricoeur discovered objective reason himself? Apparently not! He goes on to explain that what he is describing is the 'inversion of the theory of intuition into the theory of interpretation" (same page). Whatever the case, Ricoeur was certainly very close to discovering the same theory that I discovered. Perhaps he even considered it to be trivial. But he does not talk about it directly, only using references to it as a critical faculty upon another text.

Quotes by Ricoeur taken from his work Hermeneutics and the Human Sciences, John B. Thompson, trans. as quoted in The Phenomenology Reader. Dermot Moran and Timothy Mooney, eds. New York: Routledge, 2002.

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