Appraisal 33 (1):124-131 (2004)

This essay provides an overview of Poteat’s thought, beginning with his basic problem of the eradication of the embodied person from accounts of human knowing in the critical tradition. Poteat’s analysis of the move from “place” to “space” as the arena of living shows his procedure. I isolate six elements of the recovery of the person in his work: the necessity of his strange vocabulary, the need to embed knowing in time, the primacy of speech over writing, the centrality of the body to all knowing, the mindbodily unity of the person, and the mindbody as the ground of all meaning-making. I conclude with three questions: Is Descartes, or bourgeois culture, the real villain of modern thought? Isn’t language, rather than the mindbody, a more appropriate place to locate the absolute center of the Real? Isn’t there a need to flesh out Poteat’s individualistic focus with the communal dimensions of personhood?
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DOI 10.5840/traddisc2013/201440218
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