Volume 18, 2018
The Promise of Genetic Phenomenology
Interest and Pregivenness in Husserl’s Genealogy of Logic
The problem of accounting for the cognitively relevant relation between experience and thought is among the defining problems of modern philosophy. I suggest that addressing this problem provides an important motive for the “genealogy of logic” that Husserl outlines in his posthumously published Experience and Judgment. Arguing that the notions of “interest” and “pregivenness” are crucial to this approach, I seek to assess it through a detailed analysis of the use to which these notions are put in its most decisive part, the account of the origin of “simple predication”. I conclude that there is reason to think that the notions cannot play the roles that Husserl assigns to them, and hence that his approach fails.