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Günter Figal’s Objectivity : Some Critical Remarks

Günter Figal’s Objectivity : Some Critical Remarks Günter Figal’s superb study is replete with thoughtful readings of philosophers from Plato and Aristotle to Kant and Nietzsche, from Husserl and Heidegger to Merleau-Ponty and Wittgenstein. These generous yet critical engagements ( Auseinandersetzungen ) are an education in itself, invariably placing the work of these thinkers in a new, challenging light. Figal’s Zwiesprache with the history of philosophy is particularly refreshing and rewarding not least because, throughout it, he is his own man. He does not kowtow to any of these historical figures whose work he so richly adapts to his own robust and independent philosophical outlook. That outlook is defined, in a word, by the apt title of his book: Objectivity ( Gegenständlichkeit ), expertly translated by Ted George. 1 In contrast to modern philosophy’s enterprise of overcoming objectivity, Figal upholds the exteriority of things that comes into focus beyond the scope of one’s conduct and context, and, it is necessary to add, remains as such, standing not only “across from” us but opposite (“against”) us. One brings that objectivity into focus by presenting it, doing justice to the objectivity “only by assuming it as the measure of presenting.” While what is objective is accessible, it http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Research in Phenomenology Brill

Günter Figal’s Objectivity : Some Critical Remarks

Research in Phenomenology , Volume 44 (1): 111 – Mar 26, 2014

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
Subject
Discussion Günter Figal’s Objectivity
ISSN
0085-5553
eISSN
1569-1640
DOI
10.1163/15691640-12341278
Publisher site
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Abstract

Günter Figal’s superb study is replete with thoughtful readings of philosophers from Plato and Aristotle to Kant and Nietzsche, from Husserl and Heidegger to Merleau-Ponty and Wittgenstein. These generous yet critical engagements ( Auseinandersetzungen ) are an education in itself, invariably placing the work of these thinkers in a new, challenging light. Figal’s Zwiesprache with the history of philosophy is particularly refreshing and rewarding not least because, throughout it, he is his own man. He does not kowtow to any of these historical figures whose work he so richly adapts to his own robust and independent philosophical outlook. That outlook is defined, in a word, by the apt title of his book: Objectivity ( Gegenständlichkeit ), expertly translated by Ted George. 1 In contrast to modern philosophy’s enterprise of overcoming objectivity, Figal upholds the exteriority of things that comes into focus beyond the scope of one’s conduct and context, and, it is necessary to add, remains as such, standing not only “across from” us but opposite (“against”) us. One brings that objectivity into focus by presenting it, doing justice to the objectivity “only by assuming it as the measure of presenting.” While what is objective is accessible, it

Journal

Research in PhenomenologyBrill

Published: Mar 26, 2014

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