Philosophy Dictionary of Arguments

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Symbols: The concept of a symbol has, in a broader sense, the same meaning as the concept of a sign. The special use of the concept in different authors differs in some respects fundamentally, for example, with regard to which role conventions play in the formation of symbols and whether symbols form a system. See also signs, icons, conventions, meaning, reference, picture theory, representation, substitution, code.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

F.W.J. Schelling on Symbols - Dictionary of Arguments

Gadamer I 83
Symbols/Schelling/Gadamer: Schelling: "Mythology in general and every poetry of it in particular is neither to be understood schematically nor allegorically, but it is to be understood symbolically.
I 83
For the requirement of absolute representation of art is: Representation with complete indifference, so that the general is quite the particular, the particular is at the same time the whole general, so that it does not mean"(2). When Schelling establishes (in criticism of Heyne's Homer concept) the true relationship between mythology and allegory in this way, he prepares at the same time the central position for the symbolic concept within the philosophy of art.
Schelling refers to the Germanization of symbol by "Sinnbild": "as concrete, only itself equal to the image, and yet as general and meaningful as the term"(2). In fact, in the distinction of the concept of the symbol, the focus (already with Goethe) lies in the fact that it is the idea itself that gives itself existence in it. It is only because the inner unity of symbol and symbolised is implied in the concept of the symbol that this concept has been able to rise to the status of a universal basic aesthetic concept. The symbol means the coincidence of sensual appearance and a transcendental meaning, and this coincidence is, just as the original meaning of the Greek symbolon and its survival in the terminological use of denominations, not a subsequent assignment, as in the case of the use of signs, but the union of what belongs together. >Allegory/Schelling.

1. Schelling, Philosophie der Kunst (1802) (WW. V, 411).
2. A.a.O., V, 412.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
Schelling, F.W.J.
Gadamer I
Hans-Georg Gadamer
Wahrheit und Methode. Grundzüge einer philosophischen Hermeneutik 7. durchgesehene Auflage Tübingen 1960/2010

Gadamer II
H. G. Gadamer
The Relevance of the Beautiful, London 1986
German Edition:
Die Aktualität des Schönen: Kunst als Spiel, Symbol und Fest Stuttgart 1977

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2022-08-12
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