Meaning

Front Cover
University of Chicago Press, 1975 - Philosophy - 260 pages
3 Reviews
Published very shortly before his death in February 1976, Meaning is the culmination of Michael Polanyi's philosophic endeavors. With the assistance of Harry Prosch, Polanyi goes beyond his earlier critique of scientific "objectivity" to investigate meaning as founded upon the imaginative and creative faculties.

Establishing that science is an inherently normative form of knowledge and that society gives meaning to science instead of being given the "truth" by science, Polanyi contends here that the foundation of meaning is the creative imagination. Largely through metaphorical expression in poetry, art, myth, and religion, the imagination is used to synthesize the otherwise chaotic and disparate elements of life. To Polanyi these integrations stand with those of science as equally valid modes of knowledge. He hopes this view of the foundation of meaning will restore validity to the traditional ideas that were undercut by modern science. Polanyi also outlines the general conditions of a free society that encourage varied approaches to truth, and includes an illuminating discussion of how to restore, to modern minds, the possibility for the acceptance of religion.
  

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Review: Meaning

User Review  - J Scott Shipman - Goodreads

Polanyi offered an alternative take on his title for this small volume as "intellectual freedom." I believe this was Polanyi's last book, and he appeared to be tying up lose ends. I preferred the ... Read full review

Review: Meaning

User Review  - Chris Coffman - Goodreads

Michael Polanyi (1891 - 1976) was a Hungarian-Jewish (I mention this because his writings contain intermittent, but always positive, references to Christianity) chemist of the first rank, who in the ... Read full review

Contents

2
22
Reconstruction
46
4
66
Works of
82
Validity in
95
7
108
The Structure of Myth
120
9
132
10
149
11
161
12
182
13
198
Notes
217
Bibliographical Note
227
Copyright

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References to this book

Meanings of Life
Roy F. Baumeister
Limited preview - 1991
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About the author (1975)

Michael Polanyi (1891-1976), was born in Hungary, studied medicine, but devoted himself to research in chemistry. He worked in Germany until Hitler expelled Jews from public positions in 1933, when he went to the University of Manchester as Professor of Physical Chemistry. His books include his magnum opus, Personal Knowledge, as well as Science, Faith, and Society, among others.

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