The Library of Living Philosophers
by Michael Graubart
Habermas, born in 1929, began his academic career as assistant to Adorno and Horkheimer and went on to become Professor of Philosophy and Sociology in Frankfurt in 1964. It is no surprise that social structures and processes are inextricably connected with language, hermeneutics and epistemology in his wideranging work, and that he has been concerned with a Critical Theory of society. For Habermas, social and political theory must be critical.
A central preoccupation is that knowledge cannot be detached from human interests; indeed, that the epistemological bases of the truth-claims in the empiricalanalytic sciences, the historical-hermeneutic sciences and the critically oriented (i.e.