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Det intuitiva livet: Hans Larssons vision om enhet i en splittrad tid
Uppsala University, Humanistisk-samhällsvetenskapliga vetenskapsområdet, Faculty of Arts, Department of History of Science and Ideas.
1999 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This study concerns the Swedish philosopher, Hans Larsson (1862-1944), who was also known as a writer, educator and cultural figure. The book concentrates on Larsson's philosophy of intuition, which is of central importance in his thinking as a whole. My aim is to examine the significance of the concept of intuition for Larsson, as well as the intentions behind his formulation of the doctrine of intuition. I show that the faculty of intuition was not merely an instrument of knowledge for Larsson, but symbolized a way of living, being and conducting oneself. It representented a life goal, "the intuitive life", and a utopia, "the intuitive culture". For Larsson, activating and stimulating one's intuitive talents was the route to a more authentic, active and meaningful life. It was through a more developed intuition that human beings could realize their human potential, that is, become truly human. The exercise of this capacity, he thought, brings unity and conciliation not only to the individual, but to relations between individuals.

The study also shows how Larsson's doctrine of intuition offered an alternative to the dominant view of rationality at the time. In his view, intuition manifested the highest form of "logic". He sets this view against the mechanistic rationality emanating from the natural sciences which had begun to encroach upon spheres where it did not belong. Larsson's debut as an author, Intuition (1892), constituted a critique of the age which, in polemics against positivism and naturalism, argued for a rehabilitation of the significance of feeling and intuition in art, science and philosophy. A few years into the twentieth century, however, Larsson played a different role in the cultural debate. The new century brought with it a new cultural climate; anti-intellectual currents in which some sort of "intuition" was a prominent feature were growing stronger every day. Larsson increasingly came to emphasize the logical features of his own theory of intuition to offset what he viewed as a dangerous development.

The intuition theme is combined with a biographical perspective aimed at bringing into sharper relief possible connections between Larsson's social background, his personality, his private affairs, and his intellectual concerns. The implications of the notion of "home" as a symbol for Larsson and his contemporaries will also be considered.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis , 1999. , 288 p.
Skrifter, ISSN 0280-7238 ; 19
Keyword [en]
History of science and ideas, intuition, discursion, art/science, Ola Hansson, division/unity, opposites, philosophy of life, organicism, rationality/irrationality, logic, mysticism, Henri Bergson, social advancement, identity, utopia, home, community
Keyword [sv]
Idé- och lärdomshistoria
National Category
History of Ideas
Research subject
History Of Sciences and Ideas
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-775ISBN: 99-2941691-9OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-775DiVA: diva2:169881
Public defence
1999-04-23, Vasasalen, Uppsala slott, Uppsala, 10:15
Available from: 1999-04-02 Created: 1999-04-02Bibliographically approved

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