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Husserl at the Limits of Phenomenology (SPEP): Including Texts Paperback – November 21, 2001

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Combining Maurice Merleau-Ponty's course notes on Husserl's Origin of Geometry, his "Course Summary," related texts, and critical essays by each of the co-translators, this collection provides a unique and welcome glimpse both into Merleau-Ponty's nuanced reading of Husserl's famed late writings and into his persistent effort to track the very genesis of truth through the incarnate idealization of language.
In his notes, Merleau-Ponty focuses primarily on Husserl's well-known "Origin of Geometry" text from the Crisis and on another of his posthumous texts on the phenomenological role of the Earth as Earth-ground. Both of these essays lead to what Merleau-Ponty called in a working note a "transcendental history"-an analysis of a geographical inscription of history. Likewise, Merleau-Ponty is concerned in these notes with the philosophical and ontological implications of the origin of idealization, the passage from passivity to activity, the interrelation between perception and rationality--or the intertwining of nature and logos. Because of the central role these themes played in Merleau-Ponty's thought, this volume provides an important supplement to Merleau-Ponty's philosophy and his relation to Husserl for the English-speaking reader. With the translators' essays connecting Merleau-Ponty to Derrida and Levinas as well as to Husserl, the volume should become a valuable sourcebook, an indispensable stopping point on a scholar's journey into the thought of Husserl, Merleau-Ponty, Derrida, and Levinas.

About the Author

Maurice Merleau-Ponty (1908-61) is the author of Adventures of the Dialectic, Consciousness and the Acquisition of Language, In Praise of Philosophy, The Primacy of Perception, The Prose of the World, Signs, Themes from the Lectures at the Collège de France, 1952-1960, and The Visible and the Invisible, all published by Northwestern University Press.

Leonard Lawlor is a professor of philosophy at the University of Memphis. He is the author of Derrida and Husserl: The Basic Problem of Phenomenology and Imagination and Chance: The Difference between the Thought of Ricoeur and cotranslator of Jean Hyppolite's Logic and Existence. He is also the coeditor of the annual Chiasmi International: Trilingual Studies concerning the Thought of Merleau-Ponty.

Bettina Bergo is an assistant professor in the department of philosophy at Duquesne University. She is the author of Levinas between Ethics and Politics: For the Beauty that Adorns Earth, translator of Levinas's Of God Who Comes to Mind, and cotranslator of Levinas's God, Death, and Time.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 201 pages
  • Publisher: Northwestern University Press; Translated edition (November 21, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0810117479
  • ISBN-13: 978-0810117471
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,385,297 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Brian C. on November 19, 2012
Format: Paperback
This book is made up of two parts. The first part is a collection of abbreviated lecture notes made by Merleau-Ponty relating to some texts (which I believe were unpublished at the time) by Edmund Husserl. It is, essentially, a cryptic commentary on Husserl written by Merleau-Ponty. The second part is made up of three short texts by Husserl himself, the same texts that Merleau-Ponty is commenting on in the first part. My review is going to be about Merleau-Ponty's section of the text. I have read one of the Husserl essays, but I read it years ago, and it is not fresh enough in my memory to comment on it. The real reason to purchase this book, in my opinion, is to get the Merleau-Ponty commentary. The Husserl texts are there so that the reader can read the originals that Merleau-Ponty is commenting on, though I have no doubt they are interesting in their own right.

The problem that Merleau-Ponty is trying to solve throughout the text is the problem of how ideality is founded within lived experience. The problem is: ideality seems to transcend time. So how can such an atemporal, or omnitemporal, dimension of being, be founded on temporal acts? To put it another way: how is it that we can have consciousness of something that seems to transcend time from within time? This is the problem that Merleau-Ponty is dealing with. I should point out that this is not really a completed work. It is a collection of notes. Some of it is composed of half formed sentences, there are a lot of German words scattered throughout (but a pretty decent glossary in the back). The reader really has to struggle a bit to make sense out of it all. This is not a fully worked out essay. It is little slivers of thought.
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Husserl at the Limits of Phenomenology (SPEP): Including Texts
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