On the Complexity and Wholeness of Human Beings: Husserlian Perspectives
Heinämaa, S. (2017). On the Complexity and Wholeness of Human Beings: Husserlian Perspectives. International Journal of Philosophical Studies, 25(3), 393-406. https://doi.org/10.1080/09672559.2017.1323404
Published inInternational Journal of Philosophical Studies
© 2017 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.
At the beginning of Being and Time, Heidegger rejects Husserl’s classical phenomenology on three grounds: he claims that Husserlian phenomenology is impaired by indeterminate concepts, by naïve personalism, and by obscurities in its account of individuation. The paper studies the validity of this early critique by explicating Husserl’s discourse on human persons as bodily-spiritual beings and by clarifying his account of the principles by which such beings can be individuated. The paper offers three types of considerations. After a summary of Heidegger’s early critique of Husserl, the second section of the paper distinguishes between two dimensions of Husserl’s discourse on human persons. It argues that Husserl does not put forward one analysis of the being of humans, but explicates two different accounts and then studies critically their mutual relations of dependency: on the one hand, the naturalistic account of human beings as layered beings and on the other hand the personalistic account of human beings as peculiar kinds of unified wholes in which the mental and the bodily are inextricably intertwined. The third section of the paper clarifies Husserl’s theory of individuation and its consequences for our discourse on human persons. Finally, the fourth section explicates the conceptual means by which Husserl develops his account of human beings as persons. The paper ends in drawing some conclusions for contemporary philosophical anthropology. ...
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