Cosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy, Vol 16, No 2 (2020)

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Repairing Historicity

Bennett B. Gilbert

Abstract


This paper advances a fresh theorization of historicity.  The word and concept of historicity has become so widespread and popular that they have ceased to have definite meaning and are used to stand for unsupported notions of the values inherent in human experience.  This paper attempts to repair the concept by re-defining it as the temporal aspect of the interdependence of life; having history is to have a life intertwined with the lives of all others and with the universe.  After separating out the looser uses, surveying some of the literature, and defining what needs to be done, the paper examines shortcomings in the very different and widely influential conceptions of historicity of Koselleck and Heidegger.  It then advances a new conception and fits it into the theoretical and moral capabilities of the philosophy of history as a core of philosophical anthropology.

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