The science of the life-world
Although the science of the life-world is the most discussed part of the doctrine of the late Husserl, there seems to be a permanent necessity to examine what is novel in this doctrine. Does it open new paths of investigation or is it only a new and clearer outline of the programmatic intentions phenomenology had from the beginning? It is a specific character of the Husserlian style of thinking to correct himself and to repeat himself in such a manner that they are indistinguishable. Therefore the introduction of the concept of Lebenswelt wavers between a mere description of the authentic approach which Husserl chose for his phenomenological investigation, and which distinguished him and his philosophical interest from the dominant Neo-Kantian and positivistic scientism, and a new self-criticism which may not attain the great goal for which Husserl longed throughout all his work, namely to found philosophy as a rigorous science, but which would make this goal appear attainable. To this we may add that the self-interpretation of Husserl is by no means a trustworthy canon for the understanding of his meaning, because his self-interpretation oscillates between continually renewed self-criticism and teleological self-interpretation, to such a degree that, for example, Husserl pretends that his own psychological approach in the Philosophy of Arithmetic would be the prefiguration of phenomenological investigation of what he calls constitution.
Gadamer, H.-G. (1972)., The science of the life-world, in A. Tymieniecka (ed.), The later Husserl and the idea of phenomenology, Dordrecht, Reidel, pp. 173-185.
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