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1. Phenomenology 2010: Volume > 2
Alexis Gros La antinomia husserliana ontología social-historicidad según Merleau-Ponty: Reflexiones en torno al vínculo entre fenomenología y ciencias sociales: The Husserlian Antinomy between Social Ontology and Historicity according to Merleau-Ponty: Reflections on the Connection between Phenomenology and the Social Sciences
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This work is part of a wider research project on the contributions that the analysis of the antinomy between social ontology and historicity in Edmund Husserl’s thought can bring to epistemological reflection in the social sciences. In Les sciences de l’homme et la phénoménologie, Merleau-Ponty takes as starting point Husserl’s diagnosis of the critical situation in which both philosophy and the human sciences are submerged since the beginnings of the 20th century. This is the crisis of rationality as basis of every possibility of knowledge, due, among other factors, to the developments of Lebensphilosophie and the dyad historicismsociologism. The urgent situation produced by the breakdown of the basis of reason locks epistemological thought in a difficulty of deciding whether a) to succumb to absolute relativism of historicism, or b) to take refuge in a non-historical rationalism, without paying attention to its critics. In the same way Merleau-Ponty affirms the currency of Husserl’s diagnosis in the France of his time, we reaffirm its actuality for the epistemological reflection on social sciences, in view of the advance of the so-called Post-metaphysical era, which could be seen as a re-edition of a sociologist-historicism. According to Husserl, empirical sciences must be based on eidetical sciences. This is to say, on researches that could discover the essence of the studied object—by means of the Wesensschau—founding regional ontologies. In the case of sociology, empirical research should be supported by a social ontology—which states clearly the essential social categories for all times and places that researchers use without any thoroughness. This ontology should ask itself, for example, about the essence of religion or art. However, how is the Wesensschau possible, if reason is nothing else than a mere historic-contingent product? Social sciences face, still nowadays, the paradox of being forced to base their rigor on the same Lebenswelt that they expect to know. The aim of this article is to present Merleau-Ponty’s analysis of the course of this antinomy in Husserl. Our hypothesis is the following: according to the French phenomenologist, Husserl’s thought on the relation between essences and historicity develops this way. a) The first Husserl, who still thinks as a Cartesian, conceives the sphere of essences as absolutely divorced from the contingency of history. b) The Husserl “of the later years”—as Merleau-Ponty refers to him—, that is, the Husserl from the Cartesian Meditations to the Crisis, faces the hard task of basing the essences on the Lebenswelt, and conceives an intrinsic bond between both spheres.
2. Phenomenology 2010: Volume > 2
Mariana Chu Husserl y Scheler: una fenomenología del amor: Husserl and Scheler: A Phenomenology of Love
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As for Brentano, also for Husserl and Scheler love has a main ethical role, but with a wider reach, since the ethical meaning that phenomenologists see in love is founded in its ontological meaning. With the purpose of contributing some leads to the ontological sense of love, this paper approaches Scheler’s determination of the essential structure of love. Thereupon, it shows how it is possible to identify those features in Husserl’s reflection on the implications of loving. This will enable the author to show in which sense Husserl and Scheler coincide in the ethical meaning of love.
3. Phenomenology 2010: Volume > 2
Luis Álvarez Falcón Merleau-Ponty: Lo humano y lo adverso: Merleau-Ponty: The Human and the Adverse
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On September 10th 1951, in the context of the Rencontres internationales of Geneva, Maurice Merleau-Ponty gave his lecture L’homme et l’adversité (“Man and Adversity”). In an accurate diagnosis of European culture, his analysis sprang from the phenomenological premises defined by Edmund Husserl in Die Krisis der europäischen Wissenschaften und die transzendentale Phänomenologie, Einleitung in die phänomenologische Philosophie that the post-World War II context modified in its epistemological, moral and political conceptions. !e urgency for an answer to the new situation of mankind’s condition will entail a transfor mation of human knowledge as well as of the sensitive areas of our experience. Consequently, a new experience of our condition will call into question the concept of “humanism” itself, demanding a profound revision of the regression of the dynamisms of experience that have ended up in a loss—or failure—of Western culture’s conceptions. This essay will try to reactivate and upgrade the serene testimony of a thought whose premises lie in the inconclusive origin of a radical crisis: the experience of contingency and adversity.
4. Phenomenology 2010: Volume > 2
Natalia Petrillo Expresión lingüística y expresión corporal: Linguistic Expression and Corporal Expression
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In the Logical Investigations, Husserl demonstrates the need to distinguish between the meaning of a linguistic expression and its relationship to an extralinguistic object in reality. Husserl distinguishes two kinds of signs: the “indicative sign” (Anzeichen) and the “expressive sign”, which he also calls “expression” (Ausdruck). He draws the distinction with the claim that an indicative sign “indicates” something but does not express a “meaning” (Bedeutung). In other words, he disentangles the expression, as the sign which expresses a meaning, from its usual entanglement with the indicative sign. In the First Investigation of the Logical Investigations, Husserl dwells on intersubjective discourse only long enough to isolate the expressive sign and attempts to capture the way contents and acts become thematic in communication by contrasting the expressive and the indicative function of the signs. In order to study the logical meaning of a sign, Husserl excludes as irrelevant the indicative sign and devotes his analysis to the logical expressions. The article first clarifies the basic concepts of Husserl’s theory of meaning. To appreciate his observations, we might recall how the process of communication comes up in Husserl (I). Furthermore, an attempt is made in this paper to show that meaning is not restricted to linguistic expressions (II). Since communication is contaminated by indications, it can no longer be totally expressive. As a consequence, it is only when communication is suspended that pure expressivity is regained. In order to restore pure expression, the relation with the other has to be suspended. This means that the process of expression does not owe anything to the empirical world, including the empirically spoken world. It also means that the solitary subject does not need indications in order to have a relation with itself. The reason is the immediate presence of conscious life to itself. According to this, there arises the problem of whether the corporal movements are expressions, too. In response to this difficulty, I will take up Husserl’s considerations of the constitution of intersubjectivity through corporal movements. The main purpose of this article consists in showing a possible way to answer this question. The conclusion summarizes the main points and recalls that there is also another kind of expressions that Husserl did not consider in the Logical Investigations.
5. Phenomenology 2010: Volume > 2
Luis Román Rabanaque Cuerpo, cinestesia, nóema: Body, Kinaesthesis, Noema
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This paper aims to present some aspects of the noematical connections between kinaesthesis and the own Body that can be drawn following Husserl’s static and genetic analyses. These aspects concern: 1) the introduction of the concept of kinaesthesis as the phenomenological residuum of the “muscle sensations”, and in reference to the own Body as the bearer of all sensations; 2) the noematic constitution of the own Body both as a physical thing and as the “organ” of the I, the latter being constituted in turn in a sensing and a moving stratum; 3) the reference of the “I move” as a mode of the “I can (move)” to the I as subject of a system of practical capacities; 4) this system’s genetic structure in the living present as an habitual one whose noematic correlate can be described as a “schema” of possible orientations and typical presentations of things within the world; 5) the difference between kinaesthetical systems in plural and Kinaesthesis in singular as all-compassing unity.
6. Phenomenology 2010: Volume > 3
María-Luz Pintos Aron Gurwitsch: un modelo de cómo servirse de Husserl como modelo para movernos hacia una actitud ecologista
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The current ecological crisis should be confronted by phenomenology. In accordance with this conviction, this essay pursues a threefold aim: 1) To recapture Husserl´s attitude and methodology with regard to the crisis of his time as a model for us to face our current crisis. In this essay, we try to pick up Husserl´s attitude as a very valid model for us today when seeking to found the need for an environmentalist reason. 2) We analize the way as Aron Gurwitsch assumes and reproduces in himself this Husserlian attitude when he decides to unmask the causes of the Nazism, which he interprets as another consequence from the objetivism denounced by Husserl and from a nihilism grafted on to the Western thought. The Husserlian attitude and methodology were as well a model for Gurwitsch to face in a direct way the grave ideological-historical circumstances of his time. 3) Both examples of Husserl and Gurwitsch can be good for us to dare to confront the current ecological crisis from phenomenology and to found the necessity that we humans accept the great moral responsibility that is implicit in being rational.
7. Phenomenology 2010: Volume > 3
José Ruiz Fernández La crítica de Natorp a Husserl y la asunción de un uso conceptual fenomenológico indicativo en las primeras lecciones de Heidegger
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This paper begins by summarizing the critique that Natorp directed towards Husserl’s conception of phenomenology. It can be considered that this critique has two major moments. First, it is a critique against the assumption that immediate life can be treated as an immanent “fi eld” or “region” that can be known in reflection. Second, it is a critique against the assumption that the logos that gives an accurate account of immediate life, that is, the original phenomenological logos, has to take the form of a conceptual description: since every concept seems to operates an abstraction of concrete life, it seems problematic how an eidetic categorical analysis could safeguard the original reality of immediate life; in other words, it seems problematic that such an operative logos could be considered the original accomplishment of phenomenology. Heidegger acknowledged the depth of Natorp’s critical remarks and understood that they involved a real methodological problem for an accurate understanding of the phenomenological endeavour. This paper tries to clarify how the assumption of an indicative character of meaningful distinctions can overcome Natorp’s critique. To assume the indicative character of a meaningful distinction means, here, to operate with distinctions in such a way that their original dependence on concrete factual life is acknowledged, in other words, to use distinctions assuming that they are carried out for the sake of that which does not involve the categorical form of the meaningful distinction and, therefore, to use distinctions, not for their own sake, but in order to remit or indicate that concrete reality which precedes them. This paper defends also that the consequent assumption of the indicative character of meaningful distinctions is to lead to a new and more genuine understanding of phenomenology and how the phenomenological endeavour is to be carried out. Finally, this paper tries to show that this important motive is really present in Heidegger’s first lessons in Freiburg. Nevertheless, the paper also points out that the original understanding of phenomenology that this motive had to open, was soon miscarried. In Heidegger’s thought, the indicative character of philosophical concepts is not fully assumed. That motive is entangled with other irreconcilable elements that end up ruining the original possibilities that it should have contributed to unveil. These distorting elements, which ultimately prevail in Heidegger’s philosophy, are what make up for Heidegger’s theory of formal indications and for his hermeneutical transformation of phenomenology.
8. Phenomenology 2010: Volume > 3
Xavier Escribano El cuerpo como simbólica general del mundo en el pensamiento de Maurice Merleau-Ponty
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Th e aim of this paper is to provide an interpretation of the statement of Merleau-Ponty that holds that the human body is “a general symbolism of the world”. Through the author’s text, it will be shown that this formula can refer to at least three complementary meanings: the body as a synergic system; the body as a capacity of sympathy or identification with the perceived world and, finally, the body as an endless capacity of meaning.
9. Phenomenology 2010: Volume > 3
John David Barrientos Rodríguez Pasividad y sustancia en Filosofía y fenomenología del cuerpo de Michel Henry
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Michel Henry’s Philosophy and Phenomenology of the Body shows some primal and the most important resolutions which are the parting points for his thought and phenomenology. Philosophy and Phenomenology of the Body was written from 1948 to 1949 as a chapter for The Essence of Manifestation, focusing on the ego and the subjectivity. In these works, Maine de Biran is Henry’s traveling companion. Henry tries to respond to an intuition about the problem of the knowledge through the body and the subjectivity shared with Maine de Biran. Henry’s interpretation of Maine de Biran in Philosophy and Phenomenology of the Body mainly affirms that the achievement of Maine de Biran is to locate phenomenology as the foundation of ontology. It is clear that Henry tries to revise an ontological base supported by phenomenology of the body which has been showed by Maine de Biran. Henry aims to exclude himself and Maine de Biran from dualism, monism, idealism and empiricism. In this sense Henry improves two theses, and these are the base of his phenomenology: the ontological unity manifests itself and is anticipated by the subjectivity, and the originary passivity shows the basis of ontology. By improving these two points, it is possible to see a clue to phenomenology of the body which indicates the basis of ontology. This article deals with the passivity in Philosophy and Phenomenology of the Body concerning its relation with the category (faculty) of substance. It indicates one possible substantialization of the body and that of the world.
10. Phenomenology 2010: Volume > 3
Miguel García-Baró Las palabras de Cristo que dijo Michel Henry
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Michel Henry’s philosophical, literary, theological, and aesthetical proposal is a rare event which clearly marks the difficult time from the late 20th century to the early 21st century. It may be said that he went against the tide with all his efforts, to the point of death to remember the tradition which he really valued. It is obvious from the title of his apocalyptic story about the end of the world written in 1976, La Barbarie. I totally agree with the essential part of Henry’s thesis which evoked the reality and truth of many things in me from the start. However, it lacks something decisive to follow his teaching without any doubt. There are many things to learn from the discussion of Henry’s thought. Therefore, in this article I would like to discuss my identifying points and my disagreements with him. It seems to be contrary to the usual method, but, instead of starting with his first work, I prefer to take up his last one, Paroles du Christ. This is an exceptional book in terms of its rare beauty and extraordinary depth.