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Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

The problem of objectivity and fiction in contemporary philosophy

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
6.10.00  Humanities  Philosophy   

Code Science Field
H001  Humanities  Philosophy 

Code Science Field
6.03  Humanities  Philosophy, Ethics and Religion 
Keywords
contemporary philosophy, psychoanalysis, objectivity, truth, fiction, reality, subject, nominalism, realism, ontology
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (10)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  30790  PhD Rok Benčin  Philosophy  Researcher  2018 - 2021  195 
2.  22569  PhD Aleš Bunta  Humanities  Researcher  2018 - 2021  80 
3.  11486  PhD Marina Gržinić Mauhler  Philosophy  Researcher  2018 - 2021  1,699 
4.  13472  PhD Peter Klepec  Philosophy  Researcher  2018 - 2021  288 
5.  33358  PhD Boštjan Nedoh  Philosophy  Researcher  2018 - 2021  135 
6.  02155  PhD Radivoj Riha  Philosophy  Researcher  2018 - 2021  325 
7.  06397  PhD Jelica Šumič Riha  Philosophy  Researcher  2018 - 2021  373 
8.  28442  PhD Tadej Troha  Philosophy  Researcher  2018 - 2021  272 
9.  12330  PhD Matjaž Vesel  Philosophy  Researcher  2018 - 2021  179 
10.  11158  PhD Alenka Zupančič Žerdin  Philosophy  Head  2018 - 2021  422 
Organisations (1)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0618  Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts  Ljubljana  5105498000  62,542 
Abstract
When it comes to the question of objectivity – in philosophy or in the broader social discussion – we are witnessing the growing presence and importance of two opposite trends. The first, the “nominalist” trend, is moving in the direction of abandoning the very notion of truth and of objective reality. The second, the “realist” trend, insists on the category of the object “in itself” as irreducible to any kind of subjective mediation. But these opposite trends coincide at one point: they both imply an absolute separation of these two domains. In the context of the broader social debate, this comes across as, on the one hand, unreflected reference to “bare facts”, and, on the other, as the abandoning of facts and the exaltation of “post-facticity”, with both camps sharing some important presuppositions. The principal goal of the research is thus to actively intervene in the philosophical and epistemological debate regarding the status of objectivity, while trying to avoid two traps or two simplifications: the relativisation of truth and objectivity, which moves in the direction of abandoning these categories, as well as the positing of a simple opposition between truth (objectivity) and fiction, which all too frequently prevails in scientific discourse. The project will consider different philosophical articulations of the problem of objectivity, critically evaluating both its own, philosophical tradition, as well as some unreflected philosophical presuppositions of science and epistemology. It will also take into consideration some of the key conceptual points of psychoanalysis that are relevant for our research problem, as well as certain aspects of artistic practices and theory that can contribute important and interesting insights to our research. The research of the problem of objectivity and fiction in contemporary philosophy will thus be carried out following four thematic work packages (philosophy, psychoanalysis, science, and art), all of which will be oriented by the same philosophical question or guideline: the search for and examination of concepts, theories, and practices that represent an original departure from the all too common and too simple oppositions between nominalism and realism, objective and subjective, and truth and fiction.
Significance for science
The proposed project critically examines one of the central philosophical problems: the problem of objectivity. Questions regarding the modalities of subject-object relations, the real-reality chasm, the fictional status of truth, the contingency of the laws of nature, etc., are the key to understanding the unfolding of the current crisis of the notion of objectivity and prospects for its resolution through the formulation of a theoretical position that overcomes the opposition between realism and nominalism, thus providing a solid basis for fruitful collaboration between, philosophy, science, psychoanalysis, as well as artistic theories and practices. The original contribution of the proposed project to the development of philosophy and science can be seen in the formulation of the central problem it elaborates, as well as in its objective to overcome the two dominant positions of our time: first, the relativisation of truth and objectivity leading to the abandonment of these categories, and secondly, the oversimplified dualism separating truth, reality and objectivity from the mere fictions, illusions, errors, semblance, and lies. The project focuses on those concepts and problems in contemporary philosophy, as well as in psychoanalysis, that open up a perspective that – instead of discarding truth and the objectivity of knowledge – relate it rather to a radically novel theory of subject that allows the articulation of objectivity to fiction and semblance. Seen from such a perspective, the specific philosophical preoccupations with objectivity essentially intervene in those domains of knowledge in which the question of objectivity in relation to the issues of truth, reality, fictions, illusions, ideology, and the conditions of the constitution of objectivity cannot be avoided: science, politics, psychoanalysis, art, humanities, and the social sciences. Thus, the very nature of the central problem of the proposed research requires that philosophy re-examine its relation to all those areas in which the issue of objectivity necessarily engages discussions about it. In terms of the immediate relevance of the proposed project for philosophy, an innovative reconceptualisation of some key philosophical concepts, such as objectivity, reality, truth, fiction, illusion, the subject and the object, will allow philosophy to better address the problems of our time; by overcoming the disciplinary divides it will also encourage and promote the development of new modalities of interdisciplinary research. The long-term impact of the proposed project will be twofold: 1. the intra-philosophical impact, since the reworking of the concepts of objectivity, truth, fiction, semblance, the subject, and the object has implications for philosophy as a whole, not just for ontology and epistemology; 2. the extra-philosophical impact, since the proposed project will assert the relevance of philosophy for research in other fields, especially in science and psychoanalysis.
Significance for the country
The proposed project critically examines one of the central philosophical problems: the problem of objectivity. Questions regarding the modalities of subject-object relations, the real-reality chasm, the fictional status of truth, the contingency of the laws of nature, etc., are the key to understanding the unfolding of the current crisis of the notion of objectivity and prospects for its resolution through the formulation of a theoretical position that overcomes the opposition between realism and nominalism, thus providing a solid basis for fruitful collaboration between, philosophy, science, psychoanalysis, as well as artistic theories and practices. The original contribution of the proposed project to the development of philosophy and science can be seen in the formulation of the central problem it elaborates, as well as in its objective to overcome the two dominant positions of our time: first, the relativisation of truth and objectivity leading to the abandonment of these categories, and secondly, the oversimplified dualism separating truth, reality and objectivity from the mere fictions, illusions, errors, semblance, and lies. The project focuses on those concepts and problems in contemporary philosophy, as well as in psychoanalysis, that open up a perspective that – instead of discarding truth and the objectivity of knowledge – relate it rather to a radically novel theory of subject that allows the articulation of objectivity to fiction and semblance. Seen from such a perspective, the specific philosophical preoccupations with objectivity essentially intervene in those domains of knowledge in which the question of objectivity in relation to the issues of truth, reality, fictions, illusions, ideology, and the conditions of the constitution of objectivity cannot be avoided: science, politics, psychoanalysis, art, humanities, and the social sciences. Thus, the very nature of the central problem of the proposed research requires that philosophy re-examine its relation to all those areas in which the issue of objectivity necessarily engages discussions about it. In terms of the immediate relevance of the proposed project for philosophy, an innovative reconceptualisation of some key philosophical concepts, such as objectivity, reality, truth, fiction, illusion, the subject and the object, will allow philosophy to better address the problems of our time; by overcoming the disciplinary divides it will also encourage and promote the development of new modalities of interdisciplinary research. The long-term impact of the proposed project will be twofold: 1. the intra-philosophical impact, since the reworking of the concepts of objectivity, truth, fiction, semblance, the subject, and the object has implications for philosophy as a whole, not just for ontology and epistemology; 2. the extra-philosophical impact, since the proposed project will assert the relevance of philosophy for research in other fields, especially in science and psychoanalysis.
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