(2017) Husserl Studies 33 (2).

Mechanics lost

Husserl's Galileo and Ihde's telescope

Harald Wiltsche

pp. 149-173

Don Ihde has recently launched a sweeping attack against Husserl’s late philosophy of science. Ihde takes particular exception to Husserl’s portrayal of Galileo and to the results Husserl draws from his understanding of Galilean science. Ihde’s main point is that Husserl paints an overly intellectualistic picture of the “father of modern science”, neglecting Galileo’s engagement with scientific instruments such as, most notably, the telescope. According to Ihde, this omission is not merely a historiographical shortcoming. On Ihde’s view, it is only on the basis of a distorted picture of Galileo that Husserl can “create“ (Ihde 24:69–82 2011) the division between Lifeworld and the “world of science“, a division that is indeed fundamental for Husserl’s overall position. Hence, if successful, Ihde’s argument effectively undermines Husserl’s late philosophy of science. The aim of this paper is to show that Ihde’s criticism does not stand up to closer historical or philosophical scrutiny.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1007/s10743-016-9204-x

Full citation:

Wiltsche, H. (2017). Mechanics lost: Husserl's Galileo and Ihde's telescope. Husserl Studies 33 (2), pp. 149-173.

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