Communication as Paramount: Schutz’s Developing Understanding of Multiple Realities

  • Michael Barber
Part of the Contributions To Phenomenology book series (CTPH, volume 91)


Schutz’s earlier writings (meaning up until 1945) tend to convey an opposition between the non-pragmatic finite provinces of meaning and pragmatic everyday life, as can be shown by considering the modifications literature and scientific theory introduce into one’s everyday relevances, typifications, and relationships. But as his writings on multiple realities developed, Schutz recognized more and more the importance of communication, based on working acts, until communication rather than working became for him the paramount reality. Such communication provides a less antagonistic counterpart to non-pragmatic finite provinces of meaning, which must often make use of it, and the cooperative, social nature of communication de-emphasizes the motivation of pragmatic mastery, thereby opening the door to a more cooperative relationship between the pragmatic and non-pragmatic finite provinces of meaning. Schutz, however, never retracted his idea that the non-pragmatic provinces could bring emancipation to the pragmatic world of everyday life.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Barber
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophySaint Louis UniversitySaint LouisUSA

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