A Study of Ernst Tugendhat
Contemporary philosophersanalytic as well as continentaltend to feel uneasy about Ernst Tugendhat, who, though he positions himself in the analytic field, poses questions in the Heideggerian style. Tugendhat was one of Martin Heidegger's last pupils and his least obedient, pursuing a new and controversial critical technique. Tugendhat took Heidegger's destruction of Being as presence and developed it in analytic philosophy, more specifically in semantics. Only formal semantics, according to Tugendhat, could answer the questions left open by Heidegger.
Yet in doing this, Tugendhat discovered the latent "hermeneutic nature of analytic philosophy"its post-metaphysical dimensionin which "there are no facts, but only true propositions." What Tugendhat seeks to answer is this: What is the meaning of thought following the linguistic turn? Because of the rift between analytic and continental philosophers, very few studies have been written on Tugendhat, and he has been omitted altogether from several histories of philosophy. Now that these two schools have begun to reconcile, Tugendhat has become an example of a philosopher who, in the words of Richard Rorty, "built bridges between continents and between centuries."
Tugendhat is known more for his philosophical turn than for his phenomenological studies or for his position within analytic philosophy, and this creates some confusion regarding his philosophical propensities. Is Tugendhat analytic or continental? Is he a follower of Wittgenstein or Heidegger? Does he belong in the culture of analysis or in that of tradition? Santiago Zabala presents Tugendhat as an example of merged horizons, promoting a philosophical historiography that is concerned more with dialogue and less with classification. In doing so, he places us squarely within a dialogic culture of the future and proves that any such labels impoverish philosophical research.
"Zabala's wonderful epilogue& mdash;alone worth the price of the book." — Bruce Krajewski, Common Knowledge
"Manifestos are the tools through which we fashion new moral identities. They conjure and interpellate a more expansive "we." Hermeneutic Communism teaches us that we not only have to interpret the inheritance of communism in ever more generative and creative
ways, but also fashion a more ecumenical and humane "we," through the new stories we tell about how we got where we are today and where we should be going in the near future." — Eduardo Mendieta, Los Angeles Review of Books
"Santiago Zabala's monograph alone has ventured to present the English-speaking world with the philosophical development of a thinker who belongs among the very greatest. Zabala gives us a bravura performance, providing an excellent understanding of both work and context in a conceptually differentiated yet approachable language without hiding his own convictions behind those of others. I hope this book succeeds fully where Tugendhat himself had only limited success: garnering the international recognition it deserves for an important voice in the concert of European philosophy, and even, if possible, inspiring love for its subject." — Manfred Frank, professor of philosophy, University of Tubingen, and author of The Subject and the Text: Essays on Literary Theory and Philosophy
"The Hermeneutic Nature of Analytic Philosophy ably presents the thought of a first-rank philosopher who until now has been too little known. In doing so, this book bridges the frustrating canonical gap between analytic and Continental philosophy. A genuine 'must read.'" — C. G. Prado, author of Searle and Foucault on Truth
Foreword by Gianni Vattimo
1. Overcoming Husserl: The Metaphysics of Phenomenology
2. Correcting Heidegger: Verifying Heidegger's Philosophy from Within
3. Semantizing Ontology: After the Metaphysics of Logical Positivism
4. Philosophizing Analytically: The Semantic Foundation of Philosophy
Epilogue. The Linguistic Turn as the End of Metaphysics