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Husserl, Heidegger, and the Space of Meaning

Paths Toward Trancendental Phenomenology

Crowell, Steven Galt

Publication Year: 2001

In a penetrating and lucid discussion of the enigmatic relationship between the work of Edmund Husserl and Martin Heidegger, Steven Galt Crowell proposes that the distinguishing feature of twentieth century philosophy is not so much its emphasis on language as its concern with meaning. Arguing that transcendental phenomenology is indispensable to the philosophical explanation of the space of meaning, Crowell shows how a proper understanding of both Husserl and Heidegger reveals the distinctive contributions of each to that ongoing phenomenological project.

Published by: Northwestern University Press

Series: Studies in Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy


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pp. i-x


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pp. xi-xiii


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pp. xv-xviii

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Introduction: Reconsidering Transcendental Phenomenology

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pp. 3-19

The theme of this book is the space of meaning and the path opened up to its philosophical elucidation by Husserl and Heidegger. The space of meaning is familiar to philosophers under many names, reflecting diverse views of what is most important about it. Recently, Wilfred Sellars’s name for it—the “space of reasons”—has come into vogue, ...

Part 1. Reconfiguring Transcendental Logic

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1. Neo-Kantianism: Between Science and Worldview

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pp. 23-36

Neo-Kantianism, a movement with roots deep in the nineteenth century, dominated German academic philosophy between 1890 and 1920. Though it carried the impulse of German idealism into the culture of the twentieth century and set the agenda for philosophies which displaced it, the movement is little studied now. One encounters it primarily in liberation narratives constructed by those whose own...

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2. Emil Lask: Aletheiology as Ontology

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pp. 37-55

Our predominantly whiggish tendency in writing the history of philosophy occasionally has the consequence of effacing from view a thinker whose influence in his own time was significant and whose philosophical ideas may still be of some interest. This is the case with Emil Lask. The general eclipse of neo-Kantian philosophy in the 1920s by phenomenology and existentialism buried in nullity the name...

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3. Husserl, Lask, and the Idea of Transcendental Logic

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pp. 56-75

The question of a transcendental logic was one of the two great issues to which Husserl devoted himself in the last ten years of his life. Together with the theme of the lifeworld, transcendental logic seemed to provide a way of articulating what he saw as the universal mission of phenomenology: to reanimate the tradition of Western rationality by establishing philosophy in its historically mandated role as foundational science. Of these two issues, inseparable though they...

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4. Lask, Heidegger, and the Homelessness of Logic

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pp. 76-92

What is it, exactly, that philosophers study, investigate, inquire into? If (to adopt the familiar Quinean account as an example) the sciences divide up “what there is,” each taking a particular “object domain” as its field defined by the interpretation which assigns values to the variables over which its theory quantifies,1 and if philosophy proposes to contribute to this scientific enterprise, what remains as the object domain of philosophy? What, if anything, escapes the grid of the...

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5. Making Logic Philosophical Again

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pp. 93-111

Between 1912 and 1916 Heidegger published a series of writings in which he confronts the major logical theories of the time, including the metaphysical logic of neo-Scholasticism, neo-Kantian “critical idealism” (transcendental logic, epistemology as first philosophy), O. Külpe’s “critical realism,” and Husserl’s phenomenology. In each of these positions a central issue is the theory of categories. Whether inspired by Aristotle or Kant, logical theory sought to account for...

Part 2. Phenomenology and the Very Idea of Philosophy

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6. Heidegger’s Phenomenological Decade

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pp. 115-128

For years, readers of Being and Time had little external evidence to help them resolve ambiguities in that complex text. Heidegger’s publishing silence between his Habilitation in 1916 and the appearance of the existential analytic in 1927 meant that the question of his “intentions” could be approached only via the philosopher’s own autobiographical utterances, notoriously shifting and self-serving as these often...

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7. Question, Reflection, and Philosophical Method in Heidegger’s Early Freiburg Lectures

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pp. 129-151

Being and Time can be read as a treatise on transcendental method investigating the conditions of possibility for philosophical knowledge. As such, it finds its model in the transcendental-logical tradition, specifically in Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, which “is a treatise on the method, not a system of the science itself.”1 “Method” here does not denote a procedure that would apply indifferently to any subject...

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8. Philosophy as a Vocation: Heidegger and University Reform in the Early Interwar Years

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pp. 152-166

Avoiding both hagiography and idle moralizing, some recent biographically oriented studies of Heidegger provide a reliable context for approaching his thought.1 The connection between context and sense, however, remains elusive. That there is some intimate connection between the philosophy and the man is a thesis that Heidegger himself appears to authorize when, in Being and Time, he suggests that...

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9. Husserl, Heidegger, and Transcendental Philosophy: Another Look at the Encylop

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pp. 167-181

Sometime in 1927 Husserl began work on an article he had been asked to contribute to the Encyclopædia Britannica. Eventually, in the fourteenth edition of 1929, “Phenomenology” was published over the initials “E. Hu.” This version was Christopher V. Salmon’s very free—and much abridged—translation of Husserl’s much longer text. Husserl’s own final draft of the article is of interest in itself as a rich, ...

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10. Ontology and Transcendental Phenomenology between Husserl and Heidegger

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pp. 182-202

In 1983 Timothy Stapleton advanced the claim that Husserl’s transcendental phenomenology was largely motivated by an ontological problematic and not, as was argued in the previous chapter, an epistemological one.1 Critical examination of this claim provides a convenient framework for clarifying the new sense of ontology demanded by phenomenological philosophy so far as it is genuine “first philosophy,” in which (as Husserl claimed in...

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11. Heidegger’s Phenomenology and the Question of Being

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pp. 203-221

As a motto for the edition of his collected writings, Heidegger proposed the phrase “Ways, not works,” thus expressing his conviction that philosophical thinking does not aim at fixed results and systems but rather, in ever-renewed impulses of questioning, seeks to open up previously unsuspected paths into what, hidden within the familiar, calls for thinking. Thus, while Heidegger himself claimed that his topic from first to last was the “question of being,” it is impossible to grasp what...

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12. Metaphysics, Metontology, and the End of Being and Time

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pp. 222-243

The term “end” in the title of this chapter should be understood in three senses: 1. Heidegger’s unfinished book concludes in section 83 with a series of questions that are to prepare the way for the sequel, an interpretation of the meaning of being in terms of time. This preparation consists, strangely enough, in questioning the appropriateness of the method used in the previous four hundred or so pages. The analysis of Dasein’s ontological...

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13. Gnostic Phenomenology: Eugen Fink and the Critique of Transcendental Reason

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pp. 244-263

No friend of transcendental phenomenology can contemplate the face it reveals in that hybrid text, the Sixth Cartesian Meditation, without a profound sense of uneasiness.1 Like Scrooge confronting the vision conjured by the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come, one recognizes oneself in it but hopes that it is only a dream, that the future is not fixed, that there is still time to reform. Here the philosophy that...


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pp. 265-304

Works Cited

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pp. 305-314


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pp. 315-323

E-ISBN-13: 9780810120594
Print-ISBN-13: 9780810118058

Page Count: 324
Publication Year: 2001

Edition: 1
Series Title: Studies in Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy