Research in Phenomenology 46 (1):35-53 (2016)

_ Source: _Volume 46, Issue 1, pp 35 - 53 In a letter written at the end of July 1930, Jean Cavaillès singled out two of his successful students at the _Ecole Normale_, Merleau-Ponty and Lautman, “full of interest in the philosophy of mathematics”. While both would play an important role in French philosophy in the coming decades, one almost never thinks of their names together. Indeed, only rarely do we think of Merleau-Ponty and Cavaillès together. This paper will argue against this rarity. Cavaillès would write a treatise on logic that in retrospect is often viewed to advance French philosophy—but precisely at the expense phenomenology. I will argue that this evaluation is overblown. Merleau-Ponty’s philosophy, on the other hand, is often viewed in opposition to this as defending a Husserlian account of perception, a view equally too narrow. Between them, instead, I argue, we can see both transforming the Husserlian account of a transcendental logic and a transcendental aesthetic. Both provide resources for understanding phenomenology as a dialectical and historically emergent theory. Notwithstanding Cavaillès initial characterization of Husserl’s “exhorbitant use of the Cogito”, or his “aggressive” description of acts, to use Merleau-Ponty’s term, the result, in both cases, focuses on phenomenology as an emergent experience of philosophy as an “architecture” of signs.
Keywords Husserl   Cavaillès   language   philosophy of consciousness   transcendental logic   transcendental aesthetics   Merleau-Ponty
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DOI 10.1163/15691640-12341327
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