Heinrich Gomperz and “Vienna Contextualism”

Historical Epistemology and Logical Empiricism

in Contributions to the History of Concepts
Luke O'Sullivan National University of Singapore, Singapore polldo@nus.edu.sg

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Austrian philosopher Heinrich Gomperz attempted to reconcile the Vienna Circle's project of a unified science with the autonomy of historical knowledge. This article situates him in the context of the ongoing reassessment of the Vienna Circle in the history of philosophy. It argues that Gomperz's synthesis of positivism with historicity was a response to difficulties raised by Rudolf Carnap and Otto von Neurath. Gomperz achieved his reconciliation via a theory of language and action that had affinities with both neo-Kantian and pragmatist thought, combining Dilthey's hermeneutics with Carnap's requirements for scientific propositions.

Contributor Notes

Luke O'Sullivan is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at the National University of Singapore. E-mail: polldo@nus.edu.sg

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