This book develops a unique phenomenology of plurality by introducing Hannah Arendt’s work into current debates taking place in the phenomenological tradition. Loidolt offers a systematic treatment of plurality that unites the fields of phenomenology, political theory, social ontology, and Arendt studies to offer new perspectives on key concepts such as intersubjectivity, selfhood, personhood, sociality, community, and conceptions of the "we." _Phenomenology of Plurality_ is an in-depth, phenomenological analysis of Arendt that represents a viable third way between the "modernist" and (...) "postmodernist" camps in Arendt scholarship. It also introduces a number of political and ethical insights that can be drawn from a phenomenology of plurality. This book will appeal to scholars interested in the topics of plurality and intersubjectivity within phenomenology, existentialism, political philosophy, ethics, and feminist philosophy. (shrink)
This special issue addresses the debate on personal identity from a phenomenological viewpoint, especially contemporary phenomenological research on selfhood. In the introduction, we first offer a brief survey of the various classic questions related to personal identity according to Locke’s initial proposal and sketch out key concepts and distinctions of the debate that came after Locke. We then characterize the types of approach represented by post-Hegelian, German and French philosophies of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. We argue that whereas the (...) Anglophone debates on personal identity were initially formed by the persistence question and the characterization question, the “Continental” tradition included remarkably intense debates on the individual or the self as being unique or “concrete,” deeply temporal and—as claimed by some philosophers, like Sartre and Foucault—unable to have any identity, if not one externally imposed. We describe the Continental line of thinking about the “self” as a reply and an adjustment to the post-Lockean “personal identity” question. These observations constitute the backdrop for our presentation of phenomenological approaches to personal identity. These approaches run along three lines: debates on the layers of the self, starting from embodiment and the minimal self and running all the way to the full-fledged concept of person; questions of temporal becoming, change and stability, as illustrated, for instance, by aging or transformative life-experiences; and the constitution of identity in the social, institutional, and normative space. The introduction thus establishes a structure for locating and connecting the different contributions in our special issue, which, as an ensemble, represent a strong and differentiated contribution to the debate on personal identity from a phenomenological perspective. (shrink)
Whereas classical Critical Theory has tended to view phenomenology as inherently uncritical, the recent upsurge of what has become known as critical phenomenology has attempted to show that phenomenological concepts and methods can be used in critical analyses of social and political issues. A recent landmark publication, 50 Concepts for Critical Phenomenology, contains no reference to psychiatry and psychopathology, however. This is an unfortunate omission, since the tradition of phenomenological psychiatry—as we will demonstrate in the present article by surveying and (...) discussing the contribution of Jaspers, Minkowski, Laing, Basaglia, and Fanon—from the outset has practiced critical thinking, be it at the theoretical, interpersonal, institutional, or political level. Fanon is today a recognized figure in critical phenomenology, even if his role in psychiatry might not yet have been appreciated as thoroughly as his anticolonial and antiracist contributions. But as we show, he is part of a long history of critical approaches in psychopathology and psychiatry, which has firm roots in the phenomenological tradition, and which keeps up its critical work today. (shrink)
The paper investigates phenomenology’s possibilities to describe, reflect and critically analyse political and legal orders. It presents a “toolbox” of methodological reflections, tools and topics, by relating to the classics of the tradition and to the emerging movement of “critical phenomenology,” as well as by touching upon current issues such as experiences of rightlessness, experiences in the digital lifeworld, and experiences of the public sphere. It is argued that phenomenology provides us with a dynamic methodological framework that emphasizes correlational, co-constitutional, (...) and interrelational structures, and thus pays attention to modes of givenness, the making and unmaking of “world,” and, thereby, the inter/subjective, affective, and bodily constitution of meaning. In the case of political and legal orders, questions of power, exclusion, and normativity are central issues. By looking at “best practice” models such as Hannah Arendt’s analyses, the paper points out an analytical tool and flexible framework of “spaces of meaning” that phenomenologists can use and modify as they go along. In the current debates on political and legal issues, the author sees the main task of phenomenology to reclaim experience as world-building and world-opening, also in a normative sense, and to demonstrate how structures and orders are lived while they condition and form spaces of meaning. If we want to understand, criticize, act, or change something, this subjective and intersubjective perspective will remain indispensable. (shrink)
In an interdisciplinary discussion with an international group of experts, we address the question of why faces matter so much. We approach the issue from different academic, technological and artistic perspectives and integrate these different perspectives in an open dialogue in order to raise awareness about the importance of faces at a time when we are hiding them more than ever, be it in “facing” other human beings or in “facing” digital technology.
Claire Katz & Lara Trout, Emmanuel Levinas. Critical Assessments of Leading Philosophers ; Thomas Bedorf, Andreas Cremonini, Verfehlte Begegnung. Levinas und Sartre als philosophische Zeitgenossen ; Samuel Moyn, Origins of the Other: Emmanuel Levinas between Revelation and Ethics ; Pascal Delhom & Alfred Hirsch, Im Angesicht der Anderen. Levinas’ Philosophie des Politischen ; Sharon Todd, Learning from the other: Levinas, psychoanalysis and ethical possibilities in education ; Michel Henry, Le bonheur de Spinoza, suivi de: Etude sur le spinozisme de Michel (...) Henry, par Jean-Michel Longneaux ; Jean-François Lavigne, Husserl et la naissance de la phénoménologie. Des Recherches logiques aux Ideen: la genèse de l’idéalisme transcendantal phénoménologique ; Denis Seron, Objet et signification ; Dan Zahavi, Sara Heinämaa and Hans Ruin, Metaphysics, Facticity, Interpretation. Phenomenology in The Nordic Countries ; Dimitri Ginev, Entre anthropologie et herméneutique ; Magdalena Mărculescu-Cojocea, Critica metafizicii la Kant şi Heidegger. Problema subiectivităţii: raţiunea între autonomie şi deconstrucţie. (shrink)
The first part of the text is a précis of the monograph Phenomenology of Plurality: Hannah Arendt on Political Intersubjectivity, a phenomenological analysis of Arendt’s core notion of plurality that unites the fields of phenomenology, political theory, social ontology, and Arendt studies. In the second, larger part, the author responds to the comments given by Sanja Bojanić and Adriana Zaharijević, in order to clarify some key concepts and positions presented in the book.
The thesis of this paper is that Husserl, in his later ethics, reinterprets the philosophical content that discloses itself in the Kantian conception of a “fact of practical reason”. From 1917/18 on, Husserl increasingly ceases to pursue his initial idea of a scientific ethics. The reason for this move lies precisely in the phenomenological analysis of “Gemütsakte”, through which two main features of the fact of practical reason impose themselves more and more on Husserls thought: the personal concernment/obligation and the (...) primacy of the practical with the coeval call for universal validity. Husserl recognizes that the form of ethical facticity or entanglement cannot be grasped by a science of evidence, which speaks objectively and non-personally of acts of willing, valuing or preferring. Husserl thus gets to a reinterpretation of the fact of practical reason as the philosophical nucleus of his ethics, which is now a personal and affective ethics. He bestows a texture on this fact, however not as he would have thought in the first place: not as evident laws of a material apriori of “Gemüt”. In the person and her ethical experience as absolute affection Husserl rather discovers that which is per se not objectifiable and not to be made rationally evident. By this, Husserl captures and phenomenologically explains the non-objectifiable source of obligation and the possibility of complying with it. (shrink)
The paper introduces the concept of “spaces of meaning,” distilled from the work of political theorist Hannah Arendt, and used as an interpretative tool to understand some central theoretical moves in the The Human Condition. By focusing on activities which actualise conditional structures and which thereby generate experiences and meaning, I present a phenomenological re-interpretation of Arendt’s three basic activities of labour, work, and action, which actualise the conditions of life, worldliness, and plurality. The term “spaces of meaning” indicates how (...) the unfolding of certain activities simultaneously creates and structures spaces and meaningful orientation which involves a certain temporality, spatiality, corporeality, and intersubjectivity. I differentiate between activity-based and visibility-based spaces of meaning and present a dynamic interpretation of their interplay. In doing so, I challenge Seyla Benhabib’s view that part of Arendt’s methodology contains what Benhabib calls “phenomenological essentialism.” Furthermore, this analysis aims at developing an analytical tool and flexible framework also beyond Arendt scholarship. Phenomenologists can use this model of “spaces of meaning” for the task of reclaiming experience as world-building and world-opening, also in a normative sense, and of demonstrating how structures and orders are lived while they condition and form spaces of meaning. If we want to understand, criticise, act, or change something, this subjective and intersubjective perspective will remain indispensable. (shrink)
Epistemic warrant for Husserl is closely tied to his phenomenological method and his main philosophical theme: intentionality. By investigating the lived experience of intentional givenness he elaborates what being a justificatory reason amounts to and thereby develops his specific conception of epistemic justification: intuitive fulfillment of a signitive intention which achieves evidence as the experienced, subjectively accessible presence of the “thing itself.” Terminologically, Husserl calls this Ausweisung. The intuitively fulfilled givenness of the intended, its self-givenness, is the ultimate reason for (...) its epistemic justification. For Husserl a “space of reasons” is thus is tied to and made possible only by means of the fundamental accomplishment of intentionality: the conscious presence of the world itself which surpasses the classical epistemological division between inner and outer realm, mind and world. By following Husserl’s development from the Logical Investigations up to his phenomenological version of transcendental idealism, the role of epistemic justification qua demonstration of intuitive fulfillment will be spelled out according to the theses above. In the last part of the paper I will examine Husserl’s position with respect to discussions on justification in the Philosophy of Mind and analytic epistemology. (shrink)