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Phenomenology of Perception

ISBN: 9780415558693 | 0415558697
Edition: 1st
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Routledge
Pub. Date: 1/12/2012

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When it was first published in France in 1945 as Ph#xC3;#xA9;nom#xC3;#xA9;nologie de la PerceptionMaurice Merleau-Ponty was a relatively unknown philosopher, teaching at the University of Lyon in France. Since its publication and subsequent translation into many languages, Phenomenology of Perceptionis now hailed as a classic of Twentieth Century philosophy. This major new translation makes his most important work available to a new generation of readers. Profound in both scope and detail, Phenomenology of Perceptionstands in the great phenomenological tradition of Husserl, Heidegger and Sartre. Yet Merleau-Ponty departs from the story told by his predecessors #xE2;#xAC;#x1C; including Descartes - by arguing that philosophy has neglected a crucial dimension of lived experience: the role of the body. Charting a bold course between the reductionism of science on the one hand and arid #xE2;#xAC;#xDC;intellectualism#xE2;#xAC;" on the other, he argues that we should regard the body not as a mere biological unit, but as the body with which one lives, experiences as one#xE2;#xAC;"s own, and which defines one#xE2;#xAC;"s situation within the world. Not only does this ground the faculties of sensation, perception and the experience of time but the very fabric of human existence, including sexuality, one#xE2;#xAC;"s relationship to others, speech, and human freedom. A distinguishing feature of Merleau-Ponty#xE2;#xAC;"s monumental study is the way it brings phenomenology to life, drawing on now famous examples including a brain-damaged patient from World War One, cases of synaesthesia, and hallucination. In so doing, Merleau-Ponty anticipates brilliantly subsequent developments in artificial intelligence, robotics, and neuroscience where the body, having been relatively neglected, is now a central feature of research. This new translation, the first for over forty years, includes many helpful features such as a comprehensive introduction to the text and essential notes explaining key terms of translation. References to recent literature are also included, helping to place Merleau-Ponty#xE2;#xAC;"s classic work in the wider context of contemporary philosophy. Also included is an introduction by Claude Lefort. Translated by Donald A. Landes


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