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Merleau-Ponty's Poetic of the World

By (author) Galen A. Johnson, Mauro Carbone and Emmanuel de Saint Aubert

Philosophy and Literature

Merleau-Ponty's Poetic of the World

Merleau-Ponty's Poetic of the World

Merleau-Ponty has long been known as one of the most important philosophers of aesthetics, yet most discussions of his aesthetics focus on visual art. This book corrects that balance by turning to Merleau-Ponty's extensive engagement with literature.

From Proust, Merleau-Ponty developed his conception of “sensible ideas,” from Claudel, his conjoining of birth and knowledge as “co-naissance,” from Valéry came “implex” or the “animal of words” and the “chiasma of two destinies.” Literature also provokes the questions of expression, metaphor, and truth and the meaning of a Merleau-Pontian poetics.

The poetic of Merleau-Ponty is, the book argues, a poetic of the flesh, a poetic of mystery, and a poetic of the visible in its relation to the invisible. Ultimately, theoretical figures or “figuratives” that appear at the threshold between philosophy and literature enable the possibility of a new ontology. What is at stake is the very meaning of philosophy itself and its mode of expression.

Galen A. Johnson (Author) is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Rhode Island. He has been General Secretary (Executive Director) of the International Merleau-Ponty Circle (2005–2015) and Jane C. Ebbs Endowed Professor of Philosophy (2016–2018). He is the author of The Retrieval of the Beautiful: Thinking through Merleau-Ponty’s Aesthetics (Northwestern University Press, 2010) and editor of The Merleau-Ponty Aesthetics Reader: Philosophy and Painting (Northwestern University Press, 1993).

Mauro Carbone (Author) is Professor of Aesthetics at the Faculté de Philosophie of the University Jean Moulin Lyon 3 and an Honorary Member of the Institut Universitaire de France. He is the founder and the coeditor of the journal Chiasmi International: Trilingual Studies Concerning Merleau-Ponty’s Thought. His present research focuses on the connections between philosophy and contemporary visual experience. Among his books are The Flesh of Images: Merleau-Ponty between Painting and Cinema (SUNY Press, 2015) and Philosophy-Screens: From Cinema to Digital Revolution (SUNY Press, 2019).

Emmanuel de Saint Aubert (Author) is Research Director at the Husserl Archives in Paris (National Center for Scientific Research, École Normale Supérieure). His research bears most particularly on the work of Merleau-Ponty, rereading him through the lens of an overall knowledge of numerous unpublished writings. Among his books are Vers une ontologie indirecte: Sources et enjeux critiques de l’appel à l’ontologie chez Merleau-Ponty (Vrin, 2006) and Être et chair I: Du corps au désir—L’habilitation ontologique de la chair (Vrin, 2013).

Fordham University Press
ISBN-13 9780823288137
Published: 2020
Page Count: 256

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