Empathy and Otherness

Journal of Philosophy: A Cross-Disciplinary Inquiry 4 (8):11-19 (2009)
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Abstract

This reflection on the phenomenological analysis of empathy according to Edmund Husserl and Edith Stein suggests a basic structure for getting to know and retain other consciousness within a single unitary sphere of consciousness. Empathy provides the access to an other that does not absorb the other’s stream of consciousness. Rather, empathy is the possibility for the intersubjective intention of a shared world of space and time. Unless the I inculcates other consciousness within itself, the I cannot recognize itself as one among others.

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Kathleen Haney
University of St. Thomas, Texas

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