1887

n Acta Academica - The relative and the absolute in Merleau-Ponty's account of the "spoken word"

Supplement 2
  • ISSN : 0587-2405

Abstract

Merleau-Ponty's general position transcends the traditional distinction between the absolute and the relative. The "lived world" is absolute in the sense that it is the ultimate context within which we are able to render intelligible the behavioural and perceptual powers of an individual, yet the lived world is relative to the individual. The difficulty in transcending the traditional distinction lies in the very nature of thought itself and, consequently, in the central assumption of Western philosophy, for which the ultimate perspective is that of the universal thinker. By means of reflection on the experience of speech addressed to us, and through an analysis of the syndrome of semantic aphasia, I will corroborate Merleau-Ponty's claim that meaning is "incarnate" in the linguistic gesture, and argue against the notion of the philosopher as a universal thinker. I will argue that the ultimate perspective is not that of the universal thinker but that of the embodied subject, which is in "contact" with others - a contact which is lived but which can never be represented in thought. End

<b>Die relatiewe en die absolute in Merleau-Ponty se siening van die "gesproke woord"</b> <br>Die uitgangspunt van Merleau-Ponty verteenwoordig 'n transendering van die tradisionele onderskeid tussen relativisme en absolutisme. Die Lebenswelt is absoluut in die sin dat dit die finale konteks is waarin ons die gedragswyses en perseptuele vermoëns van 'n persoon kan verklaar. Nogtans is die Lebenswelt relatief vir elke individu. Die problematiek onderliggend aan enige poging om die tradisionele onderskeid te transendeer, is geleë in die besondere aard van die denke self en dus in die sentrale aanname van die Westerse filosofie, naamlik dat die finale perspektief altyd dié is van die universele denker. Deur 'n besinning oor die ervaring van spraak wat tot ons gerig word en deur 'n analise van die semantiese afasie-sindroom, sal ek probeer om Merleau-Ponty se stelling dat die linguistiese gebaar betekenis beliggaam, te bevestig. Daar sal ook geargumenteer word teen die siening van die Westerse wysbegeerte wat die filosoof sien as die universele denker wat oor die finale perspektief beskik. Die uiteindelike standpunt is die van die liggaamlike subjek wat in aanraking is met ander - 'n aanraking wat beleef, maar nooit in logiese denke geformuleer kan word nie. End

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/content/academ/2005/sup-2/EJC15160
2005-01-01
2019-08-25

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