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Intersection of intersubjectivity and corporeality. The phenomenological perspective ; Intersubjektyvumo ir kūniškumo plotmių sankirta. Fenomenologinė perspektyva

32 pages
VYTAUTAS MAGNUS UNIVERSITYCULTURE, PHILOSOPHY AND ARTS RESEARCH INSTITUTEDonatas VEČERSKISINTERSECTION OF INTERSUBJECTIVITY AND CORPOREALITY.THE PHENOMENOLOGICAL PERSPRECTIVE Summary of Doctoral DissertationHumanities, Philosophy (01 H)Kaunas, 20091The right of doctoral studies was granted to Vytautas Magnus University jointly w ith TheCulture, Philosophy and Arts Research Institut one July 15, by the decision No. 926 of theGovernment of the Republic of Lithuania.This work was performed at Vytautas Magnus University in 2004-2008.Scientific Supervisor:Doc. dr. Dalius JONKUS (Vytautas Magnus University, humanities, philosophy, 01 H)Council of Defense of Doctoral Dissertation:Chairman:Prof. habil. dr. Bronislovas GENZELIS (Vytautas Magnus University, humaniti es,philosophy, 01 H)Members:Doc. dr. Vaclovas BAGDONAVICIUS (The Culture, Philosophy and Arts Researc hInstitute, humanities, philosophy, 01 H).Doc. dr. Gediminas KAROBLIS (Vytautas Magnus University, humanities, philosophy, 01 H)Doc. dr. Arūnas MICKEVIČIUS (VilniusUni versity, humanities, philosophy, 01 H).Prof. dr. Rita ŠERPYTYTĖ (VilniusUni versity, humanities, philosophy, 01 H).Opponents:Doc. dr. Mintautas GUTAUSKAS (VilniusUni versity, humanities, philosophy, 01 H).Prof. dr. Tomas SODEIKA (Kaunas University of Technology, humanities, philos ophy,01 H)The official defense of the dissertation will be held at 1 p.m.
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Summary of Doctoral Dissertation Humanities, Philosophy (01 H)
Kaunas, 2009
The right of doctoral studies was granted to Vytautas Magnus University jointly with The Culture, Philosophy and Arts Research Institute on July 15, by the decision No. 926 of the Government of the Republic of Lithuania.
This work was performed at Vytautas Magnus University in 2004-2008.
Scientific Supervisor: Doc. dr. Dalius JONKUS (Vytautas Magnus University, humanities, philosophy, 01 H)
Council of Defense of Doctoral Dissertation: Chairman: Prof. habil. dr. Bronislovas GENZELIS (Vytautas Magnus University, humanities, philosophy, 01 H) Members: Doc. dr. Vaclovas BAGDONAVICIUS (The Culture, Philosophy and Arts Research Institute, humanities, philosophy, 01 H). Doc. dr. Gediminas KAROBLIS (Vytautas Magnus University, humanities, philosophy, 01 H) Doc. dr. Arūnas MICKEVIČIUS (Vilnius University, humanities, philosophy, 01 H). Prof. dr. Rita ŠERPYTYTĖ (Vilnius University, humanities, philosophy, 01 H). Opponents: Doc. dr. Mintautas GUTAUSKAS (Vilnius University, humanities, philosophy, 01 H). Prof. dr. Tomas SODEIKA (Kaunas University of Technology, humanities, philosophy, 01 H)
The official defense of the dissertation will be held at 1 p.m. on May 08, 2009, at Vytautas Magnus University, Faculty of Humanities in Prof. Maria Gimbutas’s auditorium. Address: Donelaičio 52, Kaunas, Lithuania.
Summary of the doctoral dissertation was mailed on April 7, 2009.
The dissertation is available at the M. Mažvydas Library, and also at the Libraries of Vytautas Magnus University and the Culture, Philosophy and Arts Research Institute.
Daktaro disertacijos santrauka Humanitariniai mokslai, filosofija (01 H)
KAUNAS, 2009
Doktorantūros ir daktaro laipsnių teikimo teisė suteikta Vytauto Didžiojo universitetui kartu su Kultūros, filosofijos ir meno institutu 2003 m. liepos 15 d. Lietuvos Respublikos Vyriausybės nutarimu Nr. 926.
Disertacija parašyta Vytauto Didžiojo universitete 2004-2008 metais.
Mokslinis vadovas: Doc. dr. Dalius JONKUS (Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas, humanitariniai mokslai, filosofija – 01 H) Disertacijos gynimo taryba: Pirmininkas: Prof. habil. dr. Bronislovas GENZELIS (Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas, humanitariniai mokslai, filosofija – 01 H) Nariai:
Doc. dr. Vaclovas BAGDONAVICIUS (Kultūros, filosofijos ir meno institutas, humanitariniai mokslai, filosofija – 01 H) Doc. dr. Gediminas KAROBLIS (Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas, humanitariniai mokslai, filosofija – 01 H). Doc. dr. Arūnas MICKEVIČIUS (Vilniaus universitetas, humanitariniai mokslai, filosofija – 01 H). Prof. dr. Rita ŠERPYTYTĖ (Vilniaus universitetas, humanitariniai mokslai, filosofija – 01 H). Oponentai: Doc. dr. Mintautas GUTAUSKAS (Vilniaus universitetas, humanitariniai mokslai, filosofija – 01 H). Prof. dr. Tomas SODEIKA (Kauno technologijos universitetas, humanitariniai mokslai, filosofija – 01 H). Disertacija bus ginama viešame gynimo tarybos posėdyje, kuris įvyks 2009 metų gegužės 08 dieną, 13 valandą Vytauto Didžiojo universitete, Profesorės Marijos Gimbutienės auditorijoje (Nr. 211). Adresas: Donelaičio 52, 44246 Kaunas, Lietuva.
Disertacijos santrauka išsiuntinėta 2009 m. balandžio 07d. Su disertacija galima susipažinti Lietuvos nacionalinėje M. Mažvydo, Vytauto Didžiojo universiteto, bei Lietuvos Kultūros, filosofijos ir meno instituto bibliotekose.
Substantiation of the Problem of the Research
The more intensive attention to one or another phenomenon reveals that what has been discussed, analyzed and more and more coming up again or was forgotten and all of a sudden due to one or another reason reminded about itself again or there was a change in the explorer’s thinking, which resulted in higher sensitiveness to one or another problem. After the established rationality in Western philosophy of long past centuries, like affirmation of distinctiveness of the human beingpar excellence, after the triumph of mind in the 20thwithout the disappointment it was necessary tocentury, not turn back to what was left behind and to what goes without saying or unworthy for a broader investigation. At the beginning of 20thcentury part of philosophers looked back at the simple, from the 1st lookunderstandable phenomena like existence of a person, body having, as well as relationship between people, I and You connections and all the latter mentioned lost the cloak of “it goes without saying” in which they have been wrapped. The investigations of intersubjectity and problems of corporeality in the modern philosophy are quite frequent and occur in various philosophical and scientific fields and are developed in different trends, i.e., investigations of sexuality and identity, consideration of philosophy as approaching exact sciences etc. Accordingly, we face these occurrences in the contemporary culture as well. So, social, cultural life of these days happens like being lived in “zone of body”, like being obsessed by relationship and body1. Although while analyzing and exploring these processes in place, we come to notice that we do not find the deeper analysis of the phenomena, obviously understandable conceptions or unconsidered, culturally inherited conceptions are being used. The anthropological understanding of human being is marked by dualistic conception and in such way the person is being apprehended like using the partitions – body/soul, interior/exterior. This kind of understanding de-bodies the person and the body is left behind the outline of humanity. Thus, in discourses connected with a theme of corporeality dominate objectivating understanding of the body. A human body is very
1K. Simonsen, "Editorial: The Body as Battlefield",Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers,  New Series, Vol. 25, No. 1, 2000, 7.
frequently perceived as being in the object world, i.e., an object among other objects. In such way, a non-understanding of human body as the core dimension of human existence becomes the side-issue of not only philosophical considerations, but in practical contexts as well. A manipulation with the human body - the dying or non, born one or non, finds oneself behind the responsibility for person’s life and behind respect for person’s dignity as well. In the analyses of relationship between people it is very frequently confined to psychological-like assertions and non-reflective presumptions. Separation among I and Other, mine and not–mine, finally, I, Other definitions are understood as something that is naturally given. The connection between I, Other is explained and reduced into communication, appearing goodwill, which arose under influence of psychological processes, customs, religion or the responsibility consolidated by laws, ,,the call for nature” or similar. But all these as statements that go without saying looses its cloak, when the question is raised, i.e. when you start thinking: what is the true existence of a human being in this world, what connects him/her with another person, how he/she understands an ,,inner myself”, what is a part of his/her body in connection to relationship with other people, what connects him/her with other living creatures? Thinking over how a person is in this world attention is drawn to such simple and trivial perceptions: a human being exists having a body; a human being communicates using his/her expressive body language; a human being comes to know the world by moving, touching, seeing, smelling, hearing and tasting; a human being exists in the world, which is social our-worldthe presence of Other. These basic; a human being perceives himself/herself in apprehensions directly or indirectly lead to a dimension of an existence of human body, indicate relationship with the world, where the subject and the world are strongly bounded, finally, they lead into the field where I and others-I are in conjunction. Exactly these questions and this kind of experience, revealing the beforehand mentioned delusive obviousness of separations and grounded till-theoretical clarity that explications based on them are not enough, so they have to be from the beginning and newly reflected, which is the center of attention of this thesis. The context of this problem and the views were formed in the history of evolution of philosophy. As well as
the doubt on what has been perceived, turning back towards the past, obviously realized perception based on the view of not enough, was born inside philosophy. The thesis research indulges into the context of history of philosophy not only through some of a criticism of philosophical conceptions, but also through a development of conceptions which where formulated in the phenomenological tradition. The phenomenological philosophy becomes one of support points of the thesis context, because this trend of the philosophy floods into the history of philosophy like the attempt for newly rethought inheritance of intellectual history. Its founder’s – Edmund Husserl’s method, which was based on the certitude in that no reasoning theory can force us to have doubts in the principle of principles that any of a primordial perception is a true source of cognition and all that is given to us in this primary perception of intuition, has to be accepted exactly like that, like it gives itself out in such limits, in which it appears2grants means for fulfillment of turning back and for analysis, offered of a genesis of the meaning. By the way, certain stereotypes were formed about the same phenomenological philosophy, which require critical thinking. For many people, it is being associated only with a description of structures of consciousness and cognition and of exploration of these, but there are quite a few accusations too – as if although with an aim set of describing this what becomes apparent in a primary perception of relationship with the world and oneself, in the end it is being entrapped into snares of classical Western Philosophy: intellectualism, solipsism, non-down to earth thinking, talks about non-existing ego etc. Moreover, in this thesis, by exploring the text of phenomenologists, it will be revealed that the reasoning based on the phenomenological method reaches best its goals when it is turned back to the body-subject. Thus, phenomenological method turns back a look of a thinker not only to what and how it is perceived, but also to a perceiver himself. So, in such way, a perceiving subject, its relation with the world, his historicity, its relationship with other subjects, its existence in this world and the world itself becomes the center of attention of the philosophical research. But the fact can not be missed that you can not hear unison in the phenomenology, when you talk about these phenomena. We come across different opinions, as well as criticism and the diverse strategies of explication too. This variety
2Э. Гуссерль,Идеи. Книга I, Mосква: Дом интеллектуальной книги, 1999, 60.
reveals a couple of things. On one hand, we see that the phenomenology is not smooth. But the obvious differences, which do not allow speaking about the doctrine, do not deny the fact as accurately noticed by Merleau–Ponty, where he states that thinkers are being united by uniquestyleof thinking; strive to discover the simple relationship with the world from a new angle and to grant a philosophical status to this relation3. On the other hand, diversity of opinions for us, who want to reconsider these phenomena, too, becomes the challenge – how it exactly happens in reality? If you wish to answer this question, it would be necessary to apply the same basic move of thinking – to raise these questions again: what does it mean that in this world I exist having a body? What does it mean to have a body, to be corporeal? What relates me to another person, animals and the world? How do I perceive myself and the fact of who I am?
 The Object of the Thesis
There are fields and interconnections explored in this thesis between corporeality and intersubjectivity. Intersubjectivity is reflected in the light of openness of person’s thinking to otherness and in the light of Other’s alliance for possibility of recognition. Corporeality is perceived as a perspective of human being in the world; the research on the non-objective corporeality is being carried out along in connection with phenomena. It is being considered how fields of corporeality and intersubjectivity interconnect together and what this bond teals to us.
Survey of the Sources and References of the Thesis
Although for a long time the research of corporeality and intersubjectivity in the history of philosophy was moved aside into shadows, still in some works of philosophers you can come across such themes which are also being reviewed by the author of the thesis having in mind what influence it has for phenomenological explorations. Due to the influence in forming views of the world wide outlooks in works of Plato, Aristotle and Leibniz are touched upon.
3Merleau-Ponty,Phénoménologie de la perception, Saint-Amand: Gallimard, 1992, I, II.
But a very important place of the thesis falls to Rene Descartes, while analyzing the historical context of the problem, because on one hand, this author strengthens the widely criticized dualistic perception of human being in this thesis. On the other hand, the insights present in author’sMeditations being developed by are estimating specifics of perception of corporeality. While analyzing philosophical texts represented by phenomenological thinkers, we see that fields of corporeality and intersubjectivity get into the research center. The thesis is a first place supported by works of Edmund Husserl and Maurice Merleau-Ponty. The pathfinder of phenomenology often is attributed to those authors, who have consciousness, the structures of cognition, the pure subject and etc. as the major field of exploration. Although this kind of Husserl’s phenomenology understanding frequently arising from limitation on earliest texts, ignores the obvious fact, where the author all the time comes back to problems of reduction, the world constitution, knowledge of the Other and to those of corporeality and intersubjectivity. Thus, I am analyzing those texts of Husserl in my thesis, where the following areas are being explored:Cartesian Meditations,Ideas Pertaining to a Pure Phenomenology and to a Phenomenological Philosophy1st and 2nd books. The special attention by Husserl is being directed to corporeality, movement, temporality, kinesthetic perception, consideration of relations and peculiarities of phenomenological analysis of such phenomena which are underlined in the collection of his manuscripts: About IntersubjectivityandThe Earth which does not Move. The second phenomenologist is Maurice Merleau-Ponty, who made the extraordinary influence to the author of the thesis and to the ideas notified in the thesis. This thinker is frequently linked to the outset of body of phenomenology, because you can read all his texts as if they were the stretching perception of corporeality and phenomena related to the corporeality. The major texts of this philosopher, which are being analyzed in this thesis, are:La structure du comportement,Phénoménologie de la perception, et non-sens Sens, Éloge de la philosophie et autres essais, Le visible et l’invisiblebeiL’Œil et l’esprit. By comparing works of both authors in this thesis, there is no strive to put in the disagreement in between those (although you can hear quite a few opinions that the philosophy of Merleau–Ponty is the radicalization of Husserl‘s phenomenology or even
modification4), but in the light of analyzed problems, it is being shown how explorations of both phenomenologists come into contact with and how the different aspects of the same phenomena open up. So, the phenomenology of Merleau–Ponty appears to us as the one renewing the soul of Husserl and the extension of this sagacity5(understanding of phenomenology as the specific point of view as compared to relations with the world) allows involving the other authors too into the research context of already started intersubjectivity and corporeality by Husserl and Merleau-Ponty. By analyzing the texts of the later authors, it becomes clear that in the major cases in the texts of the pathfinder of phenomenology we come across the hints of analyses performed by the later phenomenologists. Thus, in the texts of the latter we do not find anythingradically new where the themes of intersubjectivity and corporeality are being touched upon. The later investigations made by different phenomenologists become similar not to revolutionary investigation of problem, but to extending meditation of problems, because all the time due to the inner exploration of the problem (part of Husserl’s manuscripts became accessible to larger public only very recently) and to cultural and social influence, the new earlier not noticed elements are found and there has been made an effort to explicate those too. The texts of Albert Camus, Jean-Paul Sartre, Martin Heidegger, Emmanuel Levin, Michel Henry, Alphonsas Lingis, Algis Mickūnas and Natalie Depraz are being interpreted in this thesis along with the texts of other phenomenologists. Due to high importance for this thesis, the works of Michel Henry, Alphonsas Lingis and Algis Mickūnas should be mentioned separately. The book of Michel HenryIncarnation une philosophie de la Chaire,being analyzed in this thesis and where the authorwhich is thinks over the insights of Descartes and their significance to the phenomenology of the body. The phenomenology of a body of Henri becomes the phenomenology of life. This theme of auto-revelation of life and the one of life-community is developed perceiving the themes of perceiving body and a sensitivity of bodies to each other. In the bookTranscendence et incarnation by Natalie Depraz, in the light of Husserl’s manuscriptsAbout Intersubjectivity andCartesian Meditationsthe closeness of the intersubjectivity asle-fsirytlaet corporeality is analyzed. The author reveals and 4R. Barbaras,Le tournant de l'expérience, Paris: Vrin, 1998, 78. G. Brent Madison,La phénoménologie de Merleau-Ponty, Paris: Klincksieck, 1973, 185. 5D. Zahavi, „Merleau-Ponty on Husserl: A Reappraisal“, T. Tvadvine, L. Embree,eluaMrety's-Pon Reading of Husserl, Dordrecht: Kluwer,. 2002, 28.
how in our consciousness self understanding prepares and opens our consciousness to knowledge of Other. Also the author’s article “The Husserl’s theory of Intersubjectivity as Alterlogy“, where periods of empathy are analysed, becomes a very important source for the research in intercorporeality of this thesis. In this thesis the works of Alphonsas Lingis take the extraordinary part not because of the theme spread, but also due to the phenomenological descriptions made, which do not only support the major statements of this thesis, but also became the encouragement for the author of this thesis to carry out personal phenomenological descriptions. The research context of this day in this thesis is being represented by such authors as: already mentioned Natalie Depraz, Renaud Barbaras, Gary Brent Madison, Danas Zahavi, Bernhard Waldenfels, Elizabeth A. Behnke and others. The majority of the texts of the mentioned authors are critical literature of Husserl or philosophical literature of Merleau–Ponty. In order to present the surroundings of Lithuanian phenomenological researches the following authors should be mentioned: Algis Mickūnas, Dalius Jonkus, Gediminas Karoblis, Jurga Jonutyte, Nijole Keršyte, Mintautas Gutauskas, Skaiste Laskiene and Vytautas Pivorius. While speaking about the specific researches of fields of itntytivibjecersu or laeroprocretniyit,to mention separately the publications ofwe have Dalius Jonkus, where he most widely among Lithuanian authors analyses the nearest themes to this thesis, i.e. phenomenological conceptions of rationality, intentionality, time, alterity and intersubjectivity. We also have to separate the texts of Algis Mickis, the influence of those in Lithuanian context let us attribute to the primary sources. The majority of other earlier mentioned authors of the Lithuanian phenomenological contexts only touch upon the problems analysed in this thesis, where they explore the spheres, questions or phenomena they are interested in. As well there are in this thesis not quoted works of the Lithuanian philosophers – Tomas Sodeika, Arturas Sverdiolas, Nerijus Mileris, who influenced the formation of thoughts expressed in this thesis.
The Topicality of the Research
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