Theoretical and Post-Theoretical Philosophy
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An important revolution in modern philosophy consists in postulating that philosophy does not cognize the world, but is able only to study thinking, or, which in this context is the same, to cognize knowledge. This thesis has allowed reorganizing the pattern of interaction between philosophers and the representatives of special sciences. Ancient philosophers created general theories of the world by basing on the principles “revealed by the power of the mind” and then entrusted it as an intellectual weapon to other intellectuals. Nowadays philosophers develop theories of knowledge; transmit the methods built on their basis to the special sciences, and wait for the results of its application. It is assumed that the theories of the animate and inanimate nature, of the humans and society, constructed by using the scientific method, could be generalized, and only on this basis an ontology, i.e. a philosophical theory of being, can be built. Then philosophers must be re-engaged in performing generalization and reflection, which replaces speculation. But today, philosophy is neither speculation nor reflection. Philosophy seems to become “post-theoretical thinking,” which determines the boundaries of a theory, and articulates the use of theoretical knowledge in a variety of intellectual and social practices.
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