Philosophy Today 61 (1):175-187 (2017)

Timothy Mooney
University College Dublin
My aim in this essay is to show that Edith Stein’s influence on Merleau-Ponty in Phenomenology of Perception is predominantly through her early work On the Problem of Empathy. Though he does not give Stein due acknowledgement, Merleau-Ponty is closer to her philosophically than to her near contemporary Max Scheler, who receives much more attention. Whilst Stein’s influence is in the main difficult to disentangle from that of Husserl, some of her reformulations of and additions to the latter’s ideas are taken up recognisably in Merleau-Ponty’s phenomenology of embodiment. I focus on her accounts of bodily ownership and embodied willing and acting, and on her view of how the ownness of conscious human life is a condition of explicit self-awareness and empathic experience. I conclude by showing how her contributions are developed further by Merleau-Ponty, most notably in his reworking of the representation, decision and implementation model of human action.
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  Continental Philosophy
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ISBN(s) 0031-8256
DOI 10.5840/philtoday2017321152
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