Purely Objective Reality
In his 'Letter on Humanism' of 1947, Heidegger declared that the subject/object opposition and the terminology that accrues to it had still not been properly addressed in the history of philosophy, and he awaited a proper disquisition that resolved the problem. To date, that has not been provided. This volume explains and solves the prevailing problems in the subjectivity/objectivity couplet, in the process making an indispensable contribution both to semiotics and to philosophy. This book shows that what is thought to be 'objective' in the commonplace use of the term is demonstrably different from what objectivity entails when it is revealed by semiotic analysis. It demonstrates in its exegesis of the 'objective' that human existence is frequently governed by examples of a 'purely objective reality' – a fiction which nevertheless perfuses, is perfused by, and guides experience. The ontology of the sign can be mind-dependent or mind-independent, just as the status of relation can be as legitimate on its own terms whether it is found in ens rationis or in ens reale. The difference in the awareness of human animals consists in this very contextualization that Deely's writings in general have made so evident: the ability to identify signs as sign relations, and the ability to enact relations on a mind-dependent basis. Purely Objective Reality offers the first sustained and theoretically consistent interrogation of the means by which human understanding of 'reality' will be instrumental in the survival – or destruction – of planet Earth.