cropped IMG 1293

History of the Concept of Time, p. 21


'Classification' means dividing and ordering actual elements which are already given. Ordering is always done from a point of view, as everyone says. Point of view is that toward which I look, with regard to which I make certain distinctions in a domain of subject matter...

Third, the point of view can itself be drawn from the actual elements to be ordered. No principle is superimposed on them; it is rather drawn from the actual elements themselves. This is the real maxim which Brentano follows in his classification: "The order of lived experience must be natural." An experience must be assigned to a class to which it belongs in accordance with its nature. 'Nature' here means that which is what it is, as seen from itself. When it is genuine, a classification can be made only "from a prior familiarity with the objects," "from a study of the objects."


[quotes from Franz Brentano, Psychologie vom empirischen Standpunkt, 1874/ Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint, edited by Linda L. McAlister, 1973, p. 194]