Horst Steinke, Vico’s Ring. Notes on the“Scienza nuova”, its Structure, and the Hermeneutics of Homer’s Works
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Horst Steinke


It is in this intended sense of anachronism that both in section, as well as

in subsequent material, certain more recently articulated interpretive “tools”

will be brought to bear on the questions raised. Successfully carried out or

not, «[the] underlying fact is that conceptual and other topical assumptions are

needed by a historian for the very first purpose of understanding what earlier

thinkers said in the sense of what their views actually amounted to» (Hintikka,

p. 134).

On the inevitable comparison and contrast with Gadamer’s hermeneutical

outlook (in his

Wahrheit und Methode

), see S. Knuuttila, pp. 96-98, and J. Hin-

tikka, p. 108; for a more general assessment of Gadamer’s hermeneutics, see

also V. Hösle,

God as Reason: Essays in Philosophical Theology

, Notre Dame, Indi-

ana, University of Notre Dame Press, 2013, pp. 179-182.


This is the term coined by E. Kleinert (in German «Mathematik der Re-


Studien zur Mathematik und Philosophie

, Leipzig, Leipziger Universi-

tätsverlag, 2012, p. 23.


With respect to the literature on category theory, we would like to high-

light particularly E. Kleinert’s work since it places the mathematics of category

theory within a broader, non-mathematical, philosophical framework which

we find congenial to our own approach:


, pp. 23-24; Id.,

Mathematik für


, Leipzig, Leipziger Universitätsverlag, 2004, pp. 65-83; Id.,


in Philosophy and Mathematics

, in

Gibt es sicheres Wissen? Aktuelle Beiträge zur Er-


, ed. by M. Rahnfeld, Leipzig, Leipziger Universitätsverlag, 2006,

pp. 242-262, also in

Hamburger Beiträge zur Mathematik

, 199, 2004, online at



Also to be recommended is D. I. Spivak,

Category Theory for the Sciences

, Cam-

bridge-London, MIT Press, 2014, for its expository use of accessible examples

to illustrate category-theoretic concepts; see also

What is Category Theory?

, ed.

by G. Sica, Monza, Polimetrica, 2006. With respect to the history of the idea

of category theory, see R. Krömer,

Tool and Object: A History and Philosophy of

Category Theory

, Basel-Boston-Berlin, Birkhäuser, 2007, pp. 61-75. For all in-

tents and purposes, it saw the light of day in 1945 with a seminal paper by

mathematicians S. Eilenberg and S. Mac Lane.


It has been shown «that categorical structures are already inherent in

the basic elements of our language and thinking» («dass kategoriale Strukturen

bereits den Elementen unseres Sprechens und Denkens innewohnen»): E.


Mathematik für Philosophen,

cit., p. 82. For examples from various are-

as such as cognitive development in small children, human cognition in gen-

eral, language, basic intellectual abilities, music, see also my essay

Vico’s Three

Realms. From “Liber metaphysicus” to Category Theory

, in «Laboratorio dell’ISPF»,

IX, 2012, 1/2, pp. 51-88, p. 72, footnote 129; online at