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51. Phenomenology 2005: Volume > 5 > Issue: Part 2
James Mensch Artificial Intelligence and the Phenomenology of Flesh
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A. M. Turing argued that we should draw “a fairly sharp line between the physical and the intellectual capacities of a man.” Traditionally, this has meant disregarding the role flesh plays in our intellectual capacities. Correspondingly, intelligence has been defined in terms of the algorithms that both men and machines can perform. In this essay, I raise some doubts about this paradigm. Intelligence, I argue, is founded on flesh’s ability to move itself, to feel itself, and to engage in the body projects that accompany our learning a language. Th is implies such a sharp line cannot, in fact, be drawn.
52. Phenomenology 2005: Volume > 5 > Issue: Part 2
Notes on Contributors
53. Phenomenology 2005: Volume > 5 > Issue: Part 2
Frank J. Macke Body, Liquidity, and Flesh: Bachelard, Merleau-Ponty, and the Elements of Interpersonal Communication
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This essay seeks to consider Merleau-Ponty’s concept of embodiment from the vantage point of Gaston Bachelard’s poetic reflections on the four elements: earth, wind, fire, and water. More specifically, I intend to interpret Merleau-Ponty’s notion of flesh, as articulated in The Visible and the Invisible, as communicative embodiment, and then I seek to understand the communicological feature of flesh in terms of water and liquidity. The thesis of this essay is that the discourse on “embodiment” that follow in Merleau-Ponty’s wake should, regardless of its classification as “postmodern,” be articulated in terms of the “post-Cartesian” consciousness animated by Merleau-Ponty’s phenomenology.
54. Phenomenology 2005: Volume > 5 > Issue: Part 2
Dallas Willard For Lack of Intentionality
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Much of contemporary Philosophy of Language has attempted to explain the relationship between language and the objects referred to by it without recourse to the intentionality of acts of consciousness, as Husserl and other Phenomenologists have understood it. This essay takes one author from the “Analytic” tradition, David Wiggins, and points out the inadequacies in his recent attempt to explain how “natural kind terms” connect up with the objects to which they apply. It traces the failure to build an intelligible bridge between the terms and their extension to failure to incorporate intentionality into the analysis of meaning.
55. Phenomenology 2005: Volume > 5 > Issue: Part 2
François Raffoul Heidegger and Ethics
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The ambition of this essay is to investigate Heidegger’s thought of ethics in terms of what he calls in his “Letter on Humanism” an “originary ethics,” attempting to draw key features or characteristics of such an ethics. I argue that the proper site of ethics is at the center of Heidegger’s enterprise, in which ethics is grounded on a phenomenal basis, as opposed to being left groundless in abstract theorizing on so-called applied and theoretical ethics. Heidegger would think ethics, not as some theoretical principles to apply, but as the very unfolding of human existence.
56. Phenomenology 2005: Volume > 5 > Issue: Part 2
Harry P. Reeder Living Words and Concepts: Semantic Space and Semantic Texture
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An exploration of the active and passive constitution of linguistic and proto-linguistic semantic space in motivated and intersubjective intentional life. ‘Semantic texture’ encompasses ontological and epistemological features of finite, historical, and discursive human life.
57. Phenomenology 2005: Volume > 5 > Issue: Part 2
Paul Majkut MetaTV
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Viewing TV as a totality is obfuscated by attention too closely fixed on autonomous programming. When the attitude of the viewer changes and reveals the larger dimension of the object viewed, a shift from passive reception to active disruption is possible. Television viewers move from program to program, empowered by the remote control, violating and replacing programming temporal restraints intended by producers with an internal time consciousness that is marked by duration rather than chronology. The shift from passive reception to a narrative whose structure is controlled by the viewer is profound. MetaTV is reiterated falsehood and reiteration is the essence of the “big lie,” not an antidote to deception, as Husserl and Stein argue.
58. Phenomenology 2005: Volume > 5 > Issue: Part 2
David Seamon “A Strange Current of Sympathy and Knowledge”: The Experience of “Teched” as Portrayed by American Novelist and Agrarian Reformer Louis Bromfield
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In this essay, I draw on one short story by the American writer and agrarian reformer Louis Bromfield (1896-1956) to examine phenomenologically the experiential dimensions of “teched”—a colloquial word used by Bromfield to refer to a capacity for experiencing an intuitive intimacy with things, creatures, and landscapes such that the boundaries of self and other dissolve. I argue that this mode of encounter might be useful today in facilitating a deeper sense of care and concern for the natural world.
59. Phenomenology 2005: Volume > 5 > Issue: Part 2
Marilyn Nissim-Sabat The Future of Psychiatry and the Naturalization of Phenomenology
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This essay is a critique of the effort of cognitive scientists to naturalize phenomenology, in particular Husserlian phenomenology, in order to legitimate their investigation into conscious phenomena by integrating phenomenality, presumably in Husserl’s sense, with cognitive science. I show that this effort is misguided because it rests on profound misconstruals of the meaning of phenomenology. In conclusion, I show that Husserlian phenomenology cannot be naturalized because its inaugural act is the de-naturalization of the world.
60. Phenomenology 2005: Volume > 5 > Issue: Part 2
Thomas Nenon Seebohm, Husserl, and Dilthey
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This essay outlines the main themes in Thomas Seebohm’s Hermeneutics. Method and Methodology with particular emphasis on his descriptions of animal and elementary understanding. It closes with some remarks about the relationship between human understanding as a whole and more primitive strata of understanding like animal and elementary understanding, on kinaesthesis, and on the way that various philosophical methods, including phenomenology, can contribute to a comprehensive description and critical analysis of hermeneutics.