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Spring 2013
Philosophy 188 Phenomenology: Merleau-Ponty's Phenomenology of Perception
Tues/Thurs 11-12:30
220 Wheeler

Office Hours:
Friday from 2 to 4 pm

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With growing interest in the role of the body in perception, and in the related question of the possibility and nature of non-conceptual content, Merleau-Ponty’s classic work, Phenomenology of Perception, has become increasingly relevant. We will read the book in order to understand and evaluate Merleau-Ponty’s arguments against what he calls empiricism (a sort of behaviorism) and intellectualism (cognitivism), as well as his positive account of what he calls motor intentionality — a kind of intentionality without conceptual content that, Merleau-Ponty argues, is the basic way human beings are embedded in the world.

SCHEDULE as of December 31st, 2013

Jan. 22, 24      Intro: “Cezanne’s Doubt” [Sense and Nonsense, pp. 9-21]
                     Merleau-Ponty on Cinema, “The Film and the New Psychology”
                     [Sense & Nonsense, pp. 48-top of 54],

                      Note: These texts are available on ‘bSpace’ for those taking the class.
Jan. 29, 31        Kelly and Noe debate
Feb. 5, 7           Association, Attention and Judgment, pp. 13-52.
Feb. 12, 14        Body as an Object, Body in Classical Psychology, pp. 69-100
Feb. 19, 21        Motricity (1), pp. 100-156
Feb. 26, 28        Motricity (2)
March 5, 7         Body and Sexuality, pp. 156-179
March 12           Body as Expression and Speech, pp. 179-209 (Noe)
March 14,19, 21  Sensing, pp. 209-252
April  2, 4          The thing (1), pp. 312-342
April 9, 11         The thing (2)
April 16, 18        Other Selves, pp. 361-387
April 23, 25        Cogito, pp. 387-431
April 30, May2    Freedom (Merleau-Ponty vs. Sartre), pp. 458-483
                        Sartre, Being and Nothingness, pp. 559-569, 594-599, 619-629
May 6, 10          Review

Required text:
Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Phenomenology of Perception, 2012, Donald Landes, Trans., Routledge. Hardcover | ISBN-10: 0415558697 | ISBN-13: 978-0415558693.

This is the only translation that will be used in the course.  (If you bought the old translation, you will need to get a refund.)
On bSpace you have access to the other texts mentionned in the schedule above. For those who do not have access, I will eventually make these texts available here.
Attendance and contribution to weekly discussion sections.
Reading about 40 pages per week of the Phenomenology of Perception.
Two 7-8 page papers, or one 15 page paper.

History of Modern Philosophy (25B) or an equivalent course is required. 
It would also help to have taken Searle’s Philosophy of Mind (132) and/or to have taken Descartes (170) and or Kant (178).

Created on 15 october 2012, updated 8 january 2013