Taking empathy online

Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy (2021)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

Despite its long history of investigating sociality, phenomenology has, to date, said little about online sociality. The phenomenological tradition typically claims that empathy is the fundamental way in which we experience others and their experiences. While empathy is discussed almost exclusively in the context of face-to-face interaction, I claim that we can empathetically perceive others and their experiences in certain online situations. Drawing upon the phenomenological distinction between the physical, objective body and the expressive, lived body, I: (i) highlight that empathy involves perceiving the other’s expressive, lived body, (ii) show that the lived body is not tied to the physical body and that empathy can take place outside of face-to-face interactions, and (iii) argue that the lived body can enter online space and is empathetically available to others there. I explore two ways in which the other’s lived body enters online space and can be empathetically perceived: first, in cases where our face-to-face encounter is technologically-mediated over video link and, second, by showing how the other’s texts, as speech, can form part of the other’s lived body. Investigating empathy online not only furthers our understanding of online encounters but also leads to a refined conception of empathy more generally.

Links

PhilArchive

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Lived body and fantasmatic body: The debate between phenomenology and psychoanalysis.Thamy Ayouch - 2008 - Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 28 (2):336-355.
Feeling togetherness online: a phenomenological sketch of online communal experiences.Lucy Osler - 2020 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 19 (3):569-588.
Kinaesthetic Empathy.Jaana Parviainen - 2003 - Dialogue and Universalism 13 (11-12):151-162.
Corps propre or corpus corporum.Marie-Eve Morin - 2016 - Chiasmi International 18:333-351.
Heidegger on the Notion of Dasein as Habited Body.Akoijam Thoibisana - 2008 - Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology 8 (2):1-5.
The role of empathy in clinical practice.S. Kay Toombs - 2001 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 8 (5-7):5-7.
Types of body representation and the sense of embodiment.Glenn Carruthers - 2008 - Consciousness and Cognition 17 (4):1316.
The Role of Phenomenology of Merleau- ponty in Medicine.Somayeh Rafighi & Mohammad Asghari - 2017 - Journal of Philosophical Investigations at University of Tabriz 11 (20):117-140.
Illness and the paradigm of lived body.S. Kay Toombs - 1988 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 9 (2).

Analytics

Added to PP
2020-05-21

Downloads
1,761 (#5,568)

6 months
184 (#16,210)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Lucy Osler
Cardiff University

References found in this work

The Phenomenological Mind.Shaun Gallagher & Dan Zahavi - 2008 - New York, NY: Routledge. Edited by Dan Zahavi.
Phenomenology of the Social World.Alfred Schutz - 1967 - Northwestern University Press.
Signs.Maurice Merleau-Ponty - 2018 - Chiasmi International 20:231-231.
Beyond empathy: Phenomenological approaches to intersubjectivity.Dan Zahavi - 2001 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 8 (5-7):151-167.

View all 26 references / Add more references