The double expansion that Husserl’s phenomenology imposed on subjective experience posed, among other difficulties, a new and particularly difficult problem for Husserl; that of the trans-temporal identity of the transcendental subject, the “ego.” This problem involves also, and still more fundamentally, the question of the ontological status of the ego. Beginning with his descriptivepsychological understanding of consciousness and its intentional acts in the 1901 Logical Investigations, Husserl had first identified the subjective ego with the empirical person, and considered it sufficient to determine the flow of acts experienced by consciousness as a “bundle” of subjective phenomena devoid of altogether devoid of any internal principle of unity, except a mere formal synthesis.
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