Unmasking the Person

By showing how the person appears, this paper calls into question the Cartesian prejudice that restricts appearance to objects. The paper recapitulates the origin of the term “person,” which originally designated the masks and characters donned by actors and only subsequently came to designate each particular human being. By concealing a face, the mask establishes a character who speaks with words of his own. The mask points to the face and to speech as ways the person appears. It belongs to the very nature of the person not only to appear but also to be aware of how one appears, and to have the ability to modulate thatappearance as the situation requires. This ability means one thing in art and another in life, and the paper explores the significance of this contrast
Keywords Other Minds  Philosophical Anthropology  Phenomenology
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DOI 10.5840/ipq201050432
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PhilPapers Archive Chad Engelland, Unmasking the Person
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