The aim of this chapter is to highlight a number of parallels between Platonic thought and Husserlian phenomenology with regard to philosophy as a way of life. This chapter comprises three sections. First, the author shows the extent to which Plato and Husserl agree with one another when they illustrate the essential difference between philosophy and the sciences and argue that philosophical thought is located in a different dimension to that of scientific thought. Second, the author explains their respective accounts of such differences by concentrating on the method of philosophy and showing that both Plato and Husserl conceive of philosophy in terms of intuitive thinking. The third and last section is devoted to the understanding of philosophy as a conversion. In both Plato and Husserl, this characteristic of philosophy is directly linked not only to the emphasis they put on the difference between philosophy and the sciences, but also to the specific method of philosophy as intuitive thinking. The intuitive character of philosophical thought is indeed an inherent component of philosophy as a way of life that implies a conversion. These three aspects allow us to understand why Plato and Husserl view philosophy as an exercise to be enacted from the first-person point of view. This exercise goes hand in hand with a radical transformation of the philosopher’s attitude toward the world, the self, and others.
Experience has been a pivotal philosophical topic since Greek antiquity. The phenomenological movement has also played a crucial role in the history of philosophical theories or ideas of experience. The major contributions of Husserlian and post-Husserlian phenomenology to the philosophical understanding of experience can hardly be overestimated. The ambition of this volume is to illustrate how phenomenology still remains a very fruitful approach that is essential to current philosophical and interdisciplinary debates on experience.
The articles in
Phenomenology and the Metaphysics of Sight explore the uses and resonances of the paradigm of sight across the phenomenological tradition, with particular reference to the works of Husserl, Heidegger, and Merleau-Ponty. The axes of this investigation are the phenomenological readings of the notion of sight in ancient Greek philosophy, the ways in which phenomenology leads us beyond the primacy of sight, and the rivalry between the paradigm of sight and those of touch and hearing. The aim of this collection is to demonstrate that the use of the paradigm of sight pervades phenomenology and partially explains both the development of its self-criticism and its view on the history of philosophy.