23
§4. Philosophy and the sciences [28-29]

forms the basis of judging just as it does of desiring and every other psychic act. Nothing can be judged, but also nothing can be desired, nothing can be hoped or feared, if it is not represented."4 Hence the simple having of something assumes the function of a basic comportment. Judging and taking an interest are possible only if something is represented, which gets judged, in which an interest is taken. Brentano operates not only in mere description but tries to set off this division from the traditional one in a critical examination which we will not pursue any further.

Thus a completely new movement was initiated in psychology and philosophy, a movement which already had an effect upon the American psychology of that time, upon William James, who gained influence in Germany and all of Europe, and from James back upon Henri Bergson, whose theory of the immediate data of consciousness (Essai sur les donnees immediates de La conscience, 1889) accordingly goes back to the ideas of Brentano's psychology. His idea of a descriptive psychology had a profound impact upon Dilthey. In his Academy essay of 1894, "Ideas toward a Descriptive and Analytic Psychology," Dilthey sought to make such a psychology the basic science among the human sciences. The truly decisive aspect of the development of Brentano's way of questioning is to be seen in the fact that Brentano became the teacher of Husserl, the subsequent founder of phenomenological research.


β) Edmund Husserl


Husserl himself was originally a mathematician. He was a student of Weierstrass and wrote a mathematical dissertation for his degree. What he heard of philosophy did not go beyond what any student picked up in the lecture courses. What Paulsen said was reliable and clear, but nothing apt to inspire Husserl to regard philosophy as a scientific discipline. It was only after he graduated that Husserl attended the courses of the man who was then much discussed. Brentano's passion for questioning and reflection impressed Husserl so strongly that he remained with Brentano for two years, from 1884 to 1886. Brentano provided the decisive turn to the scientific direction which Husserl's work was to take. His wavering between mathematics and philosophy was resolved. Through the impression which Brentano as teacher and researcher made upon him, Husserl espied, within the unproductive philosophies of the time, the possibility of a scientific philosophy. Characteristically, Hussert's philosophical efforts did not begin with some contrived and far-fetched problem. Rather,



4. Ibid., p. 104 [Eng. tr., p. 80].