The problem of intersubjectivity: A comparison of Martin Buber and Alfred Schutz

Human Studies 6 (1):185 - 195 (1983)
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Alfred Schutz in his phenomenological studies on the social world, has systematically analyzed the nature of social relationships between individuals, and has arrived at an originating point involving intersubjectivity. This point is described by what he calls the Pure We-relationship. Comparison of Schutz's analysis of the Pure We relationship with Buber's description of his personal experience of intersubjectivity, i.e., the l-Thou relationship, reveals a remarkable convergence. For instance, fundamental to both Schutz and Buber are the notions that intersubjectivity is tied to the lived presence of the self with the other (i.e., sharing of time in the stream of duration), and that the 'content' of this 'experience' is related to the being of the other. These interesting features in the works of Schutz and Buber are described by showing the similarity between the Pure We and I-Thou relationships.



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