“All things considered:” Sensibility and ethics in the later Merleau-ponty and Derrida [Book Review]

Continental Philosophy Review 42 (4):435-447 (2010)
It is one of Jacques Derrida’s later texts, Le Toucher—Jean-Luc Nancy , wherein one finds his most sustained commentary on the philosophy of Maurice Merleau-Ponty. I argue that Derrida’s criticisms of Merleau-Ponty in this text conceal a significant proximity between his own elaboration of sensibility and that of Merleau-Ponty. Their respective accounts of sensibility are similar in two respects. Firstly, for them both, sensibility is born of a parsing of the self in a hiatus or interval that disrupts the movement of auto-affection. The self can only be known as such through this exposure to alterity. Secondly, this exposure and opening is in no way normative for either thinker, which is to say that their accounts of sensibility are similar not only in structure but also insofar as sensibility for them both is a non-normative opening to ethics; it is an elaboration of embodiment that provokes the question of response but no definitive or prescriptive answer. Hence the structure of sensibility begs the question of ethics, and the problem of response, but can provide little by way of a normative ethics.
Keywords Merleau-Ponty  Derrida  Sensibility  Embodiment
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 9,360
External links
  • Through your library Configure
    References found in this work BETA
    Maurice Merleau-Ponty (1964). Signs. Northwestern University Press.
    Citations of this work BETA

    No citations found.

    Similar books and articles

    Monthly downloads

    Added to index


    Total downloads

    42 ( #33,912 of 1,089,047 )

    Recent downloads (6 months)

    1 ( #69,722 of 1,089,047 )

    How can I increase my downloads?

    My notes
    Sign in to use this feature

    Start a new thread
    There  are no threads in this forum
    Nothing in this forum yet.