TO THE ONTOLOGY OF WAR: WHY WARFARE BUT NOT PEACEFUL NEGOTIATIONS

Authors

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.15407/fd2023.02.074

Keywords:

existential conflict, cultural world, being in the world, communicative philosophy, fundamental ontology, Jurgen Habermas, Martin Heidegger, Charles Taylor, Jean-Luc Nancy

Abstract

The article is aimed at a philosophical study of the foundations/causes of war. Its background is a definition of the Russian-Ukrainian full-scale warfare as an irreconcilable existential conflict of the "Russian world" between the "Russian world" and the national world of Ukraine. Methodological specific of the article is reliance on the everydayness of a boundary situation of war to define the cultural world, as well as cultural identity as concepts that get existential meaning. Philosophy potential is used to clarify the key question for today's war discourse about why the parties to the conflict are determined to take military actions, but not to resolve the conflict through peace negotiations. The answer is sought by comparing two ontologies of the world that there are in Habermas' communicative theory of action and Heidegger's fundamental ontology. Each of them provides an alternative concept of understanding and, accordingly, different foundations for its truth theory. This also provides a perspective, firstly, to distinguish two alternative positions of participants in the discourse of war – "internal" one as "being in a culture at war" and another of an "external" observer. Secondly, this distinction helps to explain why war as a conflict of cultural worlds could be considered from different philosophical points of view, namely from the position of the philosophy of communicative action, as well as in the context of existential analysis of being. Examination of the explanatory potential of both approaches is carried out on the basis of a comparison of different concepts of the world, fundamental to each of philosophers. It is done by clarifications of basics of two ontologies of understanding and, accordingly, of their theories of truth. The article indicates that the theory of truth in communicative philosophy is based on the regulative idea of the unity of the objective world. Instead, with reference to examples from Charles Taylor and Jean-Luc Nancy, the author claims that the fundamental ontology can be reinterpreted in terms of the plurality of being-in-common of people in sovereign cultural worlds. Accordingly, the interaction of representatives of different cultural identities under certain political conditions, i.e., official propaganda can turn into a radical disagreement of different existential understandings of the meaning of being, into a war of cultural worlds that cannot be overcome by just negotiations at the level of competent communication. The article ends with an open question about searching for ways to unify the mentioned ontological approaches.

Author Biography

Yevhen BYSTRYTSKY

Doctor of Sciences in Philosophy, Professor, Leading Research Fellow at the Department of Philosophy of Culture, Ethics and Aesthetics, H.S. Skovoroda Institute of Philosophy, NAS  of Ukraine, 4, Triokhsviatytelska St., Kyiv, 01001.

References

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Published

2023-06-18

How to Cite

BYSTRYTSKY, Y. (2023). TO THE ONTOLOGY OF WAR: WHY WARFARE BUT NOT PEACEFUL NEGOTIATIONS. Filosofska Dumka, (2), 74–98. https://doi.org/10.15407/fd2023.02.074

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