Original Research

An existential theory of truth

Dale Cannon
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 49, No 4 | a2521 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v49i4.2521 | © 1993 Dale Cannon | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 13 January 1993 | Published: 13 January 1993

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Dale Cannon, Western Oregon State College, United States

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Abstract

This article is an attempt to present a simplified account of the theory of truth expressed in the writings of certain existentialist writers - namely, Kierkegaard, Heidegger, Jaspers, and Marcel. It is designed to serve as a supplement to conventional textbook treatments of the nature of truth, which typically ignore the contributions that existentialists have made to the topic. An existential theory of truth stresses the epistemological (not ontological) indeterminateness of meaning and truth, apart from one’s personal participation in determining them. Contrary to superficial interpretations, this theory does not do away either with a transcendent reality or with objectivity. What is rejected is anything that would circumvent the necessary task of participating, oneself, in the epistemological determination of truth.

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