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Gustav Špet's "hermeneutical phenomenology" project

his reinterpretation of Husserl's phenomenology

Natalia Artemenko

pp. 59-74

Over the past several decades, the figure of Gustav Špet (1879–1937) has grown unceasingly in prominence, and the significance of his work in contemporary philosophy has increased accordingly. Alongside this process has been another, equally relentless one—that of the elaboration and enrichment of our conceptions of this philosopher's creative character, as well as of the nature and essence of his philosophy. Špet is set to become yet another major figure in the synthesis of the humanities that emerged during the first half of the twentieth century. From the point of view of historical fact, Špet's involvement with the phenomenological movement is limited to him being Husserl's student in Göttingen from 1912–1913, and to their subsequent written correspondence. Appearance and Sense, his monograph devoted to the problems of phenomenology, was published in 1914. The interweaving of phenomenology and hermeneutics that occurred in Appearance and Sense allowed Špet to reveal the very essence of phenomenology, the exact essence which, according to him, Husserl was unable to unveil. Here he relied on hermeneutics to present phenomenology in a fundamental way. In this text, hermeneutics and phenomenology are bound tightly together, and they intersect constantly. Following A. Savin, we endeavour to justify the thesis that hermeneutics only gained meaning within the scope of his phenomenological program, and as such for Špet himself hermeneutics most likely served to provide a detailed commentary of his phenomenological research with no independent significance of its own.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-39623-7_4

Full citation:

Artemenko, N. (2020)., Gustav Špet's "hermeneutical phenomenology" project: his reinterpretation of Husserl's phenomenology, in W. Płotka & P. Eldridge (eds.), Early phenomenology in Central and Eastern Europe, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 59-74.

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