Research Project


Theorizing Prognostication

Prof. Dr. Philipp Balsiger

Divinations are usually more practical activities than intellectual ones, especially if one focuses on non- or pre-scientific predictions. The undertaking of the International Consortium for Research in the Humanities is therefore less characterized by building up a consistent and complete theory than to formulate a system of directives. Usually such a system consists in a canon of rules which direct the specific activities of the various forms of divination and which guarantee successful predictions. But even such a system will never be complete and finalized and it might even lack of consistency. Nevertheless such a system is based on certain principles which represent the initial point of such an intended theory of divinatory predictions. Therefor all the substantial and methodological insights as well as all the named and hidden norms and goals have to be pointed out which at present have been elaborated in all case studies developed and presented at the International Consortium for Research in the Humanities. In relation to the problem of a general validity a differentiation between structural and individual insights, norms and goals has to be considered. Hence the question rises whether the topic of predictions is related to expectations which might be confirmed or refuted by various divinatory practices.

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