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Philosophy Today


published on January 7, 2020

Maaike Bleeker


This text elaborates an understanding of abstraction as fundamental to how we think from a closer look at relationships between abstraction, movement, materiality and lived experience. Starting from Whitehead-inspired reflections on ab­straction by Alberto Toscano and Brian Massumi, the differences between their respective readings of his work are shown to be indicative for their different conceptions of the relationships between abstraction, the concrete, and lived experience. The text then continues to elaborate how Alva Noë’s enactive approach to perception illumi­nates the central role of movement and sensorimotor skills in the emergence of abstractions from the continuity of process that is reality, and could contribute to further understanding of the relationship between movement and abstraction as what Massumi describes as the incorporeal dimension of the real. Finally, this text reflects on the potential of movement practices (including dance) and technology to become part of how abstraction is achieved.

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