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Philosophy and the Historical Perspective$
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Marcel van Ackeren

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780197266298

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197266298.001.0001

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On Philosophical Problems: Some Remarks on an Old Battlefield

On Philosophical Problems: Some Remarks on an Old Battlefield

(p.213) 14 On Philosophical Problems: Some Remarks on an Old Battlefield
Philosophy and the Historical Perspective

Ursula Renz

, Marcel van Ackeren, Lee Klein
British Academy

Hanjo Glock has recently argued that, while the study of the past can be useful to substantive philosophy, it is by no means indispensable, and he advocates a pragmatic attitude which considers the study of the past as useful insofar as it allows for a better argumentative analysis of trans-historical problems. To get beyond this perspective, the chapter first examines Glock’s characterisation of philosophical problems, which resonates with Bertrand Russell’s conception, and compares it with Paul Natorp’s view, before discussing the principles underlying Hans-Georg Gadamer’s epistemology of interpretive understanding, which results from the latter’s critique of problematic history. The chapter concludes by arguing that even though engagement with classical philosophical texts might not be necessary to the solution of specific problems, it is nonetheless essential to philosophy as a whole discipline.

Keywords:   problems, philosophical, problematic history, epistemology of interpretive understanding, Bertrand Russell, Paul Natorp, Hans-Georg Gadamer

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