Phenomenology and its Futures

South African Journal of Philosophy 32 (4):291-294 (2013)


Born in 1900–1901 with the publication of Edmund Husserl’s Logical Investigations, phenomenology, as a critical method of reflection on consciousness and its cognitive achievements against its naturalisation in the natural sciences, has undergone many changes and developments. Critiques of both its methods and tasks have emerged, plus it has served as an inspiration for numerous thinkers, including Max Scheler, Martin Heidegger, Jean-Paul Sartre, Gabriel Marcel, Simone de Beauvoir, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Jean-Luc Nancy, Michel Henry, Emmanuel Levinas, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Paul Ricoeur and Jacques Derrida, in their attempts to address the question of value, the meaning of being, existence, the lived body, the Other, life, art, history and language in original and fresh ways. The current paper reflects upon the question of what the fate of phenomenology in the twenty-first century could be by considering some of the recent work presented at the first conference of the South African Centre for Phenomenology held at the University of Johannesburg earlier this year

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Catherine Botha
University of Johannesburg

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