La surface obscure

Chiasmi International 21:103-115 (2019)
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Abstract

Tout le trajet de la pensée de Merleau-Ponty est traversé – en certains cas de manière plus évidente que d’autres – par ce que je propose de définir comme une idée de la littérature et de la philosophie en tant que dispositifs de vision, pour utiliser une expression qui est née – et ce n’est pas un hasard – dans le domaine des études cinématographiques. Plus précisément, je voudrais montrer que Merleau-Ponty voit la littérature et la philosophie de son époque opérer comme des dispositifs de vision convergents, vision qui est à considérer, à son tour, comme une pratique corporelle et pas seulement oculaire. Cela dit, il faut souligner que de tels dispositifs visuels convergents ont la particularité de fonctionner avec les mots, et que Merleau-Ponty met l’accent sur leur différente efficacité à exprimer son époque. De plus, je pense que l’idée implicite de la philosophie en tant que dispositif de vision opérant par des mots « comme toute la littérature » a une place importante, mais pour l’instant pas assez développée, dans la dernière période de la pensée de Merleau-Ponty. En outre, je voudrais souligner qu’une telle perspective est cruciale aussi pour notre époque, bien que je crois qu’elle soit différente de celle de Merleau-Ponty. En effet, je pense que notre époque et celle de Merleau-Ponty sont toutes deux caractérisées par une tension entre l’importance croissante des images et la centralité traditionnelle du concept dans notre culture.The whole path of Merleau-Ponty’s thought is crossed – some times more evidently than others – by what I propose to qualify as the idea of literature and philosophy as visual apparatuses, to use an expression that was born – and not by chance – in the field of Film Studies. More precisely, I aim at asserting that Merleau-Ponty sees literature and philosophy working in his epoch as convergent apparatuses of vision, in turn understood as a bodily and not merely ocular practice. Immediately after that, I should specify that such convergent visual apparatuses peculiarly function by words, and that Merleau-Ponty stresses their different efficiency in expressing his epoch.Moreover, I think that the implicit idea of philosophy as a visual apparatus working by words “like all literature” has a particularly relevant but so far not consequently developed place in in the last period of Merleau-Ponty’s thought. Also, I would like to stress that such a perspective is crucial in our own time too, even though I consider it to be different from Merleau-Ponty’s. Indeed, I think that both our time and Merleau-Ponty’s are characterized by a tension between the increasing importance of images and the traditional centrality of the concept in our culture.L’intero percorso del pensiero di Merleau-Ponty è attraversato, in certi casi in modo più evidente, da quella che propongo di definire come un’idea di letteratura e di filosofia come dispositivi di visione, per usare un’espressione nata, non a caso, nell’ambito dei Film Studies. Più precisamente, vorrei mostrare come Merleau-Ponty concepisca la letteratura e la filosofia della sua epoca come dispositivi di visione convergenti, intesi come una pratica corporea e non già meramente ottica. Specificherò, poi, che tali dispositivi di visione convergenti operano attraverso la parola e che Merleau-Ponty sottolinea la loro diversa efficacia nell’esprimere la sua epoca. Ritengo inoltre che l’idea implicita di filosofia come dispositivo di visione che agisce tramite la parola, “come tutta la letteratura”, occupi un posto particolarmente decisivo, anche se non del tutto esplicitato, nell’ultimo periodo del pensiero di Merleau-Ponty. Vorrei poi mostrare come tale prospettiva si riveli cruciale anche nel nostro tempo, per quanto diverso rispetto a quello di Merleau-Ponty. Infatti, penso che tanto la nostra epoca quanto quella di Merleau-Ponty siano caratterizzate da una tensione tra l’importanza sempre crescente delle immagini e la tradizionale centralità riservata al concetto nella nostra cultura.

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Mauro Carbone
Jean Moulin Lyon 3 University

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