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Philosophy - History of Science | Historical Perspectives on Erklären and Verstehen

Historical Perspectives on Erklären and Verstehen

Series: Archimedes, Vol. 21

Feest, Uljana (Ed.)

2010

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  • Addresses a current interest in a contextualized history of philosophy
  • Interdisciplinary in that it brings together historians of science and philosophers
twentieth-century literature about the distinction between explanation and und- standing)? Second, can we do justice to a particular writer’s notion of that category by taking at face value what he writes about his own motivation for adopting it? In response to both types of questions, there is by now a consensus amongst many historians of science and of philosophy that (a) intellectual history – like other kinds of history – has to be careful not to uncritically adopt actors’ categories, and (b) more generally, even the actors’ own thinking about a particular issue has to be contextualized vis-à-vis their other intellectual commitments and interests, as well as the complex conditions that make the totality of their commitments possible. Such conditions include cognitive as well as practical, institutional, and cultural factors. The articles in this volume respond to these challenges in several ways. For example, one author (Christopher Pincock) seeks to read some of the nineteen- century philosophical writings about Erklären and Verstehen as standing for a more fundamental problem, which he terms the problem of the “unity of experience”.

Content Level » Research

Keywords » 19th and 20th century history of the human sciences - 19th and 20th century history of the philosophy of science - Carl Hempel - Emile Durkheim - Erklären/Verstehen (explanation/understanding) - Max Weber - Natural Sciences - Wilhelm Dilthey - William James - physical sciences - scientific practice

Related subjects » Epistemology & Philosophy of Science - History of Science - Philosophical Traditions

Table of contents 

1. Uljana Feest, Historical Perspectives on Erklären and Verstehen: Introduction 2. Denise Phillips, Epistemological Distinctions and Cultural Politics: Educational Reform and the Naturwissenschaft/ Geisteswissenschaft Distinction in mid-19th century Germany 3. Bernhard Kleeberg, Vestiges of the Book of Nature. On Concepts of 'Meaning' in German Theology around 1900 4. Safia Azzouni, How Wilhelm Dilthey influenced Popular Science Writing: Kurd Laßwitz’s „Homchen: Ein Tiermärchen aus der oberen Kreide' 5. Philipp Müller, Explaining History. Hippolyte Taine’s Philosophy of Historical Science 6.Warren Schmaus, Understanding and Explanation in France: From Maine de Biran's méthode psychologique to Durkheim's Les Formes élémentaires de la vie religieuse 7. David Leary, Instead of Erklären and Verstehen: William James on Human Understanding 8. Katherine Arens, Erklären, Verstehen, and Embodied Rationalities: Scientific Praxis as Regional Ontology 9. Roger Smith, British thought on the relations between the natural sciences and the humanities, c.1870-1910 10. Christoper Pincock, Accounting for the Unity of Experience in Dilthey, Rickert, Bradley and Ward 11. Jacques Bos, Individuality and agency in nineteenth-century German historicism 12. Filomena de Sousa, Shaping Disciplinary Boundaries: Scientific Practice and Politics in the Methodenstreit between the German Historical School and the Austrian School of Economics 13. Michael Heidelberger, Explanation and Understanding in Max Weber: From the Perspective of von Kries 14. Daniel Šuber, Social Science between neo-Kantianism and philosophy of life: the cases of Weber,Simmel, and Mannheim 15. Thomas Uebel, Opposition to Verstehen in Orthodox Logical Empiricism

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