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Edmund Husserl

from reason to love

Ullrich Melle

pp. 229-248

Edmund Husserl (1859–1938) is the founder of phenomenology and the "phenomenological movement." A mathematician by training, he turned to philosophy under the influence of Franz Brentano, who grounded philosophy in descriptive introspective psychology. Husserl's first major publication—Die Philosophie der Arithmetik (Philosophy of Arithmetic) from 1891—can be regarded as an application of Brentano's philosophical method to foundational problems in mathematics. Husserl published the Logische Untersuchungen (Logical Investigations) in two volumes in 1900 and 1901. The first volume became renowned for its refutation of psychologism, the view that formal sciences such as logic and arithmetic have to be grounded in psychology as an empirical science. The second volume contains contributions to what later came to be called a phenomenological foundation of the formal sciences and of epistemology. Such a phenomenological foundation is a foundation in terms of intentional acts of consciousness in which different kinds of objects, including ideal and categorial objects, are intended and intuitively given. Phenomenology was distinguished from descriptive empirical psychology by its eidetic character. Young philosophers in Göttingen and Munich adopted the new philosophical method of eidetic description and formed the first phenomenological movement. They were disenchanted, however, by Husserl's transcendental turn in his next major publication, Ideen zu einer reinen Phänomenologie und phänomenologischen Philosophie, Erstes Buch (Ideas to a Pure Phenomenology and Phenomenological Philosophy, First Book) from 1913. Employing the method of transcendental epochē and reduction, phenomenology now becomes the analysis of the constitution of intentional obiects in transcendental consciousness.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1007/978-94-015-9924-5_12

Full citation:

Melle, U. (2002). Edmund Husserl: from reason to love, in Phenomenological approaches to moral philosophy, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 229-248.

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