Chapter 23

  • Kurt H. Wolff
Part of the Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science book series (BSPS, volume 51)


This essay (22) is even more clearly a transformation of surrender—to to surrender than were ‘Beginning: In Hegel and Today’ (18) and ‘On the Cunning of Reason in Our Time’ (20). There also is more to be suspended, including the notion of the transcendental subject, which before ‘Sociology, Phenomenology, and Surrender—and—Catch’ I was less aware that I was referring to in the numerous statements about man contained in ‘Beginning’ (e.g., that the continuity of the I—am consists in its beginning ever-again’ [Paragraph 26]). Each of these statements is a claim

regarding not any or all human beings such as we meet them or might meet them or such that as scientists, both natural and social, we might study them, but regarding man as such, namely, such as he must be comprehended if we would have any hope whatever of understanding, comprehending, Coming at all close to actually existing human beings, ‘empirical’ human beings. This is what I mean when I say that it is a philosophical in contrast to a scientific claim. It concerns what has by many philosophers, including Husserl, been called the ‘transcendental subject,’ in contrast to the ‘empirical subject.’ The transcendental subject is one of the many ‘essences’ that may come into view in ‘phenomenological bracketing,’ that is, if while thus bracketing myself and the world I focus on it.1

Copyright information

© D. Reidel Publishing Company, Dordrecht, Holland 1976

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kurt H. Wolff
    • 1
  1. 1.Brandeis UniversityWalthamUSA

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