Merleau Ponty Ontological Dualism

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Part I: Ontological Dualism Implies Embodied Perception Merleau-Ponty is a French philosopher whom was greatly influenced by the earlier phenomenologists Martin Heidegger and Edmund Husserl (Moran & Mooney 2007). In his phenomenology Merleau-Ponty attempts to answer various questions surrounding human existence including questions concerning the constitution of a subject and inter-subjectivity. His inquiry begins by exploring the ideas of embodiment and perception. For Merleau-Ponty finding a new method of inquiry to investigate the mind/body problem would avoid the previous downfalls and shortcomings of classical philosophical approaches. It is thought that Merleau-Ponty’s writing addressed the problems of subjectivity as an existentialist …show more content…
The critique of formalist philosophical methods as well as experimental science runs as a thematic undercurrent of all Merleau-Ponty’s work. Merleau-Ponty’s Phenomenology of Perception attempts to answer the mind/body debate by providing us an alternative to rationalism or empiricism. The work is structured as a critique of empiricism and intellectualism. Merleau-Ponty believes that the abstract and disembodied thinking present in such theories is problematic (Reynolds …show more content…
Merleau-Ponty does not deny that there are certain intellectual debts owed to science, he instead takes an ambivalent stance towards science. He does however critique the argument that we are able to understand the world in a wholly causal manner (Moran & Mooney 2007).
Intellectualism is a theoretical framework, which argues that the world is completely internal to and constituted by the mind. This suggests everything within the world is merely an idea within the mind of a conscious subject. What this implies is that any meaning to be found in the world is only meaningful because an internal mental process has made it so. Intellectualism requires that we have knowledge prior to sense experience

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