Phenomenology and Dialectical Materialism

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  • 5/24/2018 Phenomenology and Dialectical Materialism


    B O S T O N S T U D I E S I N T H E P H I L O S O P H Y O F S C I EN C E

    E D I T E D B Y R O B E R T S . C O H E N A N D M A R X W . W A R T O F S K Y

    V O L U M E 49



    Translated yDaniel J Herman and Donald V. Morano

    dited yRobert S Cohen


    D O R D R Fl C H T B O ST O N l , AN ( A ST t: K T O K Y O

  • 5/24/2018 Phenomenology and Dialectical Materialism


    Library of Congress Cataloging in Publ ication DataT r l n . D uc T ha o .

    Phenomen ology and dialect ical mater ia l ism.

    (Boston s tudies in t he ph i l o s ophy o f s c i e nce ; v . 49 )Translat ion of : Phenomknologie e t mat i r ia l i sme d ialect ique.Bibl iography: p.Includes index.1. Phenomenology. 2. Dialect icalmater ia l sm. 3. Husser l ,

    Ed mu nd , 185 9-19 38. I. Cohe n, Robe rt Sonn k. 11. Title. 111. Series.Q 174 . 867 vo l. 49 [ B 829 . 5 ] 001 . 01 s [ 146 . 32 ] 85 - 35ISBN 90-277-0737-5

    Publ i shed by D. Reidel Publ i shing Comp any,P.O. Box 17, 3300 AA Dordrech t , Hol land.

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    T r a ns la t e d f r om T r a n D u c T ha o s Pheitomertologie et mattrialismedialectique (Par is : Minh Tan, 195 e- issued New York: Gordon

    Breach Science Pubs. , Inc. , 197 1) .

    AU Rights Reserved.O 1986 by D. Reidel Publ i shing Compan y.No par t of the mater ia l protected by thi s copyr ight not ice may be reproduced or

    ut i l ized in an y form or by any m eans , e lect ronic or mechanical,including photocopying, recording or by any informat ion s torage andretr ieval sys tem, wi thou t wr i t t en permiss ion f rom t he copyr ight owner .

    Pr inted in T he Nether lands .

    P A R T O N E : T H E P H E N O M E N O L O G I C A L M E T H O D A N DI T S A C T U A L R E A L C O N T E N T

    C H A P T E R O N E : T H E I N T U IT I O N O F E S S E N C E S1. The Technique of Variation2. Pure Id ealities and Empirical Idealities3 The True Significance of the Notion of Essence4 Difficulties with the Objectivism of Essences. The Return to

    the SubjectC H A P T E R T W O : T H E T H E M A T IZ A T I O N O F C O N C R E T E C O N -S C I O U S N E S S

    5 The Return to Lived Experience in the Logische Unter-suchutzgetz

    6 The Discovery of the Reduction7. The Exposit ion of the Ideen8 The Crit ique of th e Kantians9 Fink s Reply. The Necessity of a More Radical Explanation10. The Notion of Consti tution. The Signification of Transcen-

    dental Idealism11. The Consti tution of the World of the Spiri t12. The Notion of Object. Perception and Judgment

    T A B L E O F C O N T E N T S

    E D l T O R I A L P R E F A C ET R A N S L A T O R S F O R E W O R DA C K N O W L E D G M E N T SA U T H O R S P R E F A C E


    C H A P T E R T H R E E : T H E P R O B L E M S O F R E A S O N13 Self-Evidence ~ v i d e t z c e )nd Truth 6914 The problem of Error 7 315. [Self-] Evidence as Intentio nal Perform ance Intetztiotzale

    Leis tung ) 77

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    vi T A B L E O F C O N T E N T S16. The Possibili ty of Error as Contemporaneous with Tru th 8217. A Digression The Theory of Evidence According to

    Descartes and the Problem of the Cartesian Circle 8718. Phenomenological Description as a Critique of Authenticity:

    Static and Genetic Consti tution 9019. The Consti tution of the Formal Domain: Logic and Mathe-matics 991-0. The Genesis of Judgme nt 11 1

    C H A P T E R F O U R : T H E R E S U L T O F P H E N O M E N O L O G Y21. The Genesis of Antepredicative Experience and Its Real

    Content 11-1P A R T T W O : T H E D I A L E C TI C O F R E A L M O V E M E N T

    I N T R O D U C T IO N T O P A R T T W O1. Consciousness and Matter

    C H A P T E R O N E : T H E D I A L E C T I C O F A N I M A L B EH A V I O R A ST H E B E C O M I N G O F S E N S E C E R T A I N T Y

    2. Phenomen ological Givens and Real Givens 1433 The Movement of the Internal Sense 1464. The Movement of the External Sense 1565. Remarks on the Preceding Development: Th e Passage to the

    Dialectic of Hum an Societies 172C H A P T E R T W O : T H E D I A L E C T I C O F H U M A N S O C I E T I E S A ST H E B E C O M IN G O F R E A S O N

    6. Use-Value and the Movement of Sacrifice 1797. The Movement of Wealth and the Becoming of the Gods 1898. Mercantile Econ omy and the Sacrifice of the Savior, God 1949. Monetary Economy, the Transcendence of the Idea, and theConcept of Salvation 201

    10. Capitalist ic Econom y, the Pow er of Abstraction and theProletarian Revolution 2 12

    A P P E N D I X 219N O T E S 22 1B I B LI O G R A PH Y O F W O R K S C I T E D 24 1I N D E X O N A M E S 243

    E D I T O R I A L P R E F A C E

    Triin D uc Thao, a bril l iant student of philosophy at the 6cole Normale Super-ieure within the post-1935 decade of political disaster, born in Vietnamshortly after the First World War. recipient of a scholarship in Paris in 1935-37. was early noted for his independent and original mind. While the 1930stwisted down to t he defeat of the Spanish Republic, the compromise withGerman Fascism at Munich, and the start of the Second World War, andwhile the 1940s began with hypocrit ical stabil i ty at the Western Fron t fol-lowed by the defeat of France, and the occupation of Paris by the Germanpower together with French collaborators, and then ended with l iberationand a search for a new understanding of human situations, the young Thaowas deeply immersed in the classical works of European philosophy. He wasalso the attentive but cri t ical student of a quite special generation of Frenchmetaphysicians and social philosophers: Gaston Berger, Maurice Merleau-Ponty , Emile Brehier, Henri Lefebvre, Rene le Senne, Jean-Paul S artre,perhaps the young Louis Althusser. They, in their several modes of response,had been meditating for more than a decade on the philosophy of E dmundHusserl, which came to France in the thirties as a new metaphysical enlighten-ment phenomenology. With Husserl s pheno menology. there also came thepowerful influences of a revived Hegel (of the Phenomenologl~ and ofMartin Heidegger s existentialism, and , in a tangle of variants, there came astart l ing renewed investigation of Marx. The young Tran Duc Thao joinedthe search for objective tr uth , worked to overcome both psychologism andevery weakening of knowledge by subjectivist limitation, investigated Hus-serl s writings in print and in the fine archives at Louvain (with the kindlyhelp of H. L. van Breda). His progress was dialectical, Socra tic and Hegelian,but also i t was a m aterial dialectic due b oth to his Marxist studies and to thegrim tasks of the greater liberatio n in his social life-world he liberation ofVietnam.

    Thao s themes drove him to th e border of Husserl s th ought, just as Thaosaw Husserl himself driven toward the apparent relativism of the final risismanuscripts. The privileged, indeed most precious, phenomenological activityis that o f consti tution , for which there is the endless work of passing fromnaive certainty to th e developed no-longer-naive certainties of intention al


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    xx A C K N O W L E D G M E N T SLastly, Daniel Herman wishes to heartily thank Anne who in her own

    way made this work possible by keeping little Nicole busy with her toysrather than with her daddy s translation. A U T H O R S P R E F A C E

    The work that we present to the public consists of research belonging todifferent times and inspirations. In the first part, written between 194 2 and1950, we set forth the essent ial features of phenomenology from a purelyhistorical point of view and in the perspective of Husserl s own tho ught.Our critical objections serve only to make evident internal contradictionsfoun d within the Husserlian corpus itself. In contr ast, the second part,comple ted in 195 1, is situated entirely within the position of dialecticalmaterialism. It is true that there we take up again certain technical resultsof lived analyses, but only in terms of pure positive data, completely freedfrom th e philosophical horizon th at do minated Husserl s descriptive meth od.However, it is not a question in any sense of a mere juxtaposition of twocontradictory points of view: Marxism appears to us as the only conceivablesolution to problems raised by phenomenology itself.

    Our task in setting forth Husserl s thoug ht was a relatively easy o ne,since it was concerned only with the th ory of phenomenological analysisunder the three aspects that appeare d successively in its evolution: thedescription of essences, the static explication of lived experience [vecu] ,and finally a genetic explication. Its con cepts were simple enough , and, inaddition, amply developed in the published works. But, obviously, theoryis worthless without practice, and for a long time we believed that withinthe very presentation of the method should be included the achieved resultsof the m ethod; however, the most im portant part of this work has remainedunpub1ished.l It is here that we have encountered e xtraordina ry d