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Encyclopedia of Psychology Alan E. Kazdin, PhD, Editor-in-Chief

HOFFDING, HARALD (1843-1931), Danish philosopher and historian of philosophy.

... In A History of Modern Philosophy (1894-1895; London, 1900), which examines systems from Descartes to Wundt, Hoffding divided philosophy into (I) the logical problem (formal logic and the theory of knowledge): (2) the cosmological problem: (3) the ethico-religious question (the estimation of worth): and (4) the psychological problem. Hoffding asserted that the first three domains all presuppose the fourth, which offers “empirical knowledge of the life of human consciousness” (p. xv). Psychology “describes the actual development of human knowledge”: it wrestles with the cosmological mind-body problem (Hoffding took a neutral monist position): and it investigates the feelings fundamental to “setting up of a standard of worth” and their potential to develop towards the ethical ideal.

Tags: encyclopedia of psychology
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