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Edmund Husserl

Edmund Husserl’s phenomenology was of interest to Vilém Flusser primarily because of the idea of intentionality (Gerichtetheit [directedness]) as a projective relationship between the subject and “things themselves,” as well as the concept of the epoché, meaning a “bracketing” or “suspension of judgment” of all of the self’s relations to the world in order to uncover the epistemological structures that constitute subjective world-directedness. According to Flusser, it is the discovery of intentionality as the world-directedness of the stream of consciousness that enables one to overcome the traditional correlation of subject and object and make the shift from subject to “project.” He interprets the epoché as a tool for interrupting the flow of language, allowing one to emerge from the absorption of being-in-the-world (In-der- Welt-Sein). Thus, for Flusser, epoché becomes a cipher for death and nothing while at the same time creating the possibility of translation (Über-Setzen) into another language – that is, into another ontological (world) structure.

As a consequence, however, Husserl’s persistently eidetic and prelinguistic concept of experience prevented Flusser from using the epoché to the benefit of the relativity of multilinguality, and thus of the game of dialogue. Husserl, faced with the “crisis of the lifeworld” he had so aptly noted – a crisis which, for Flusser, arises primarily in the wake of the fundamental media-induced transformation of worldly relations brought about by telematics – sought refuge in the disengagement of a transcendental ego meditating on its cogitationes, rather than (in the best Jewish tradition) creatively and dialogically devising new hypotheses.

Original article by Matthias Kroß in Flusseriana

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edmund_husserl.txt · Last modified: 2021/11/05 17:47 by