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Dialogue and Universalism

Volume 28, Issue 4, 2018

Philosophical Anthropology at the Crossroads

Giorgio Derossi
Pages 155-165

Beyond “Wesenschau”
The Merleau-Ponty “Ambiguity” between Sensation and Perception

One of the basic reasons for Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s critique of Edmund Husserl’s Wesenschau is represented by what has been defined as the “ambiguity” of the perceiver-perceived relationship, which is the theme of the “phenomenology of perception” developed by the French philosopher. Such ambiguity is in effect constitutive of fundamental perceptive-cognitive relationships; and—in the mature thought of Merleau-Ponty—it also extends, from an ontological point of view, to the “chair du monde” in which being and non-being, visible and invisible, are but two sides of the same “reality.” In this contribution we try to highlight the ambiguous characteristics of corporeal intentionality which render it incompatible with visual perception. And we propose both the necessity and the possibility of eliminating this incompatibility with a new phenomenological approach, which is also consistent with scientific “visualisation.”

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