lu.se

Centrum för kognitiv semiotik (CCS)

Humanistiska och teologiska fakulteterna | Lunds universitet

2015-10-15

Edmund Husserl's Europe: Phenomenology and Universalism

Late in his career, Husserl - the founder of modern phenomenology -
composed a series of essays and lectures discussing the topic of
Europe, its philosophical idea and teleological history. These texts,
which had their imminent background in the devastating experience of
the First World War (1914 - 1918) and the consequent political turmoil
of the Weimar Republic, took their point of departure from the overall
cultural crisis of European humanity, which seemed to lose its
confidence in the founding ideas of modernity, most importantly, in
the ideas of universal reason and progress that structure the domains
of scientific and political activity.

This presentation argues that Husserl's late reflections on Europe
should not be treated as mere analyses of contemporary criticism, but
as serious phenomenological reflections on the particular topics of
generativity and historicity, that is, those forms of meaning-creation
that take place in interpersonal, intergenerational and geo-historical
processes of co-operation. Through his reflections on Europe, it is
argued, Husserl reformulated his phenomenological project in order to
account for its intersubjective, historical and normative dimensions.