This paper follows the ongoing discussion with philosopher and psychoanalyst Jon Mills (2020) regarding the nature, origin, and essence of the archetype and psyche, in which my approach that incorporates key features of the philosophy of mind is being compared and contrasted with Mills’ onto-phenomenal approach. Both Mills and I come at this question from very different backgrounds, making interdisciplinary work challenging but rewarding. In this paper I will attempt to start from Mills’ foundational position to bridge the two frameworks together.
In this essay, I study the departure performed in The Imaginary (Sartre, 1940) from the Husserlian position spanning from the Logical Investigations and the 1904/1905 lectures on the imagination. In Sartre’s conception, the imagination in its two forms (“physical image,” “mental image”) is never intuitive. Moreover, in an act of imagination we can never find immanent sensible contents. In Husserl, the imagination in its two forms (“imaging consciousness,” “phantasia”), is a sensible intuition, like perception. Furthermore, every act of imagination apprehends immanent sensible contents (phantasmata).
My goal is threefold. First, building on the basis of Husserl’s phenomenology of the imagination, I will argue that phantasy is a specific type of intentional experience, which intends its objects as neutralized presentifications (neutralisierte Vergegenwärtigungen). Second, I will turn to dreams and argue that non-lucid dreams are unconscious phantasies, which cannot be conceived in the above-mentioned way. This realization will bring us to the third task. When recognized as the most extreme form of unconscious phantasy, dreams compel us to raise anew the fundamental question: what is the nature of phantasy experience? According to the perspective I will here develop, phantasy is a specific field of experience that lies between two extremes: the fully translucent mode of the as if consciousness and the thoroughly opaque mode of absorption (Versunkenheit). Most of our phantasies, both conscious and unconscious, voluntary and involuntary, are lived somewhere between these two extremes.
Martin Heidegger notoriously linked industrial agriculture and the Holocaust in a lecture given at Bremen while he was still banned from teaching under denazification measures. What has largely been overlooked is that Derrida also compared the two: in 1997, in an address given at the third Cerisy conference devoted his work. This apparent repetition will be understood within the broader framework of his reading of Heidegger and, in particular, with what the latter says concerning technology. It will be argued that while Derrida views industrial agriculture as a series of technical issues, each demanding of particular attention, Heidegger sees its only as an instance of Technik. Most significantly, while the latter’s philosophy offers no resources for treating it as demanding an ethical response, for Derrida our relation to animals should be guided by compassion.
This paper maintains that Sartre’s concept of magic has to be considered as a full-fledged and quite technical phenomenological concept. Such concept (a) describes a very specific way in which one is able to be conscious-of-something and (b) reveals some structural features of consciousness and its mode of existence. Moreover (c) the “magical” cluster emotions-imagination-language also appears to be the existential matrix, as it were, from which fictions are generated: starting from the most original fiction of all, namely the constitutive fiction upon which each individual existence is built, i.e. the fiction of one’s own essence.
In this article I argue not only for the value of hermeneutics today but also, and especially, how the crucial gesture of hermeneutics is that of changing the subject for the sake of our today. Surveying briefly the main lines of hermeneutical positions along its history and critiques, and connecting these critiques to the discrepancy between theory and practice, between interpretation and the need to change the world, the article proposes that our reality today, reshaped through globalization and the virtual, is performed as a hermeneutics of history. The challenge for today’s hermeneutics is to work out categories for understanding the present as on-going in a world that tends to capture and distort more and more the meaning of freedom of thought. In the final section, I propose a hermeneutics of the on-going, of gerundive time, partially under the inspiration of Paul Celan, as a response that develops the meaning of the freedom of thought. A defense of nearness and how to think in narrow nearness to the on-going is discussed.