"Logical Condensation": A Proposal to Handle Ambiguity in Contextural Analysis Using the Example of a Schizophrenic Patient in Forensic Psychiatry

Till Jansen, Martin Feißt, Werner Vogd


Ambiguity and indexicality of utterances are key challenges in qualitative research. In this article we propose "logical condensation" as a novel approach to this challenge. Logical condensation reduces a text to its propositional structure. This technique is based upon ideas of WITTGENSTEIN (2003 [1922]) and aims at getting to the (onto-)logical core of a text. As each text always is ambiguous, this attempt will undoubtedly fail. Consequently, we can learn from the fractures within the logical structure of a text about the different layers of meaning involved. Therefore, logical condensation can be the key to a polycontextural understanding of texts and the basis for a thorough contextual analysis.  We demonstrate this using the example of a schizophrenic patient in forensic psychiatry.


polycontexturality; forensic psychiatry; Gotthard Günther; Gregory Bateson; documentary method; systems theory; propositional structure; linguistic semantics; schizophrenia; contextural analysis

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17169/fqs-21.3.3504

Copyright (c) 2020 Till Jansen

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