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The Crisis of Western Sciences and Husserl’s Critique in the Vienna Lecture

  • Jakub TrnkaEmail author


The paper deals primarily with the standard question in what exactly, according to Husserl, consists the crisis of the European sciences. In the literature so far, there have been two tendencies on this question, one focusing on the loss of the sciences’ meaningfulness for life, the other emphasizing the inadequacy of their scientificity. Instead of arguing for one of these two options or for some sort of combination of both, another interpretation of this topic will be suggested. The focus will be on Husserl’s notion of historicity and its connection with the concept of life-world. It will be argued that it is the historical detachment of sciences from ideas and consequently the sphere of meaning altogether which lies at the core of their ill state. On this basis, it will show that Husserl’s approach to science in Crisis is actually double. For one, it is an attempt to supplement science with a philosophical justification. The other is a historical de-construction of scientific objectivism as a misleading metaphysical claim concerning the lived world. This second, historical approach is developed exclusively in the Crisis. However, it does bring out questions leading to rethinking the meaning and goals of transcendental phenomenology itself.


Phenomenology Historicity Science Life-world Rationality Nature Spirit 



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© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Czech Academy of SciencesInstitute of PhilosophyPraha 1Czech Republic

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