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101. Social Imaginaries: Volume > 4 > Issue: 2
Aaron C. McKeil The Modern International Imaginary: Sketching Horizons and Enriching the Picture
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This article aims to bridge the literature of modern social imaginaries with the growing study of modernity in International Relations. Employing a Taylorian conceptual framework and account, the case is made for understanding modern international relations as enabled and constrained by a “modern international imaginary”, which forms a significant part of the modern social imaginary more generally. It is argued that a modern social imaginaries approach offers a means to deepen and enlarge the growing studies of the international implications of modernity, by illuminating overlooked cultural preconditions and forms of modern international relations. First, a social imaginaries approach reveals the international to be coeval with the emergence of modern social imaginaries in general, and that it has come to form their “highest” and most consistently and severely problematic realm. Second, its insight into the enabling and constraining effects of social imaginaries offers a basis for studying the horizons of the international towards a “global imaginary”. Third, unpacking the modern international imaginary offers qualitative benefits for international theory as practice.
102. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
Fred Kersten The Problem of Transcendental Intersubjectivity in Husserl - Introduction: With Comments of Dorion Cairns and Eugen Fink
103. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
David A. Stone Ph.D., Christina Papadimitriou, Ph.D. Exploring Heidegger’s Ecstatic Temporality in the Context of Embodied Breakdown
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A well-worn trope used by phenomenologists is that things that remain invisible or unnoticed in the course of our everyday being in the world reveal themselves in instances of breakdown. This paper borrows this trope to explicate one instance of breakdown, that of traumatic spinal cord injury (TSCI). We use the phenomenology of Heidegger, especially his formulation of ecstatic temporality presented in Being and Time, to illuminate the temporal issues surrounding this radical rupture in Dasein’s being in the world through data collected from field observations of inpatient rehabilitation, interviews with persons with TSCI, and with their rehabilitation providers. Specifically, we explore the breakdown in temporality (the rupture on thrown projection) that occurs in persons who experience TSCI across three interconnected existential dimensions – understanding, attunement (mood), and falling. We conclude by discussing the value this approach to human temporality might have for both social scientists interested in human temporality and to practitioners interested in research related to the rehabilitation process.
104. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
Alfred Schutz Problems of a Sociology of Language (Fall Semester, 1958)
105. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
Virgil Henry Storr Schütz On Objectivity and Spontaneous Orders
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Although Schütz’s relationship with the Austrian school of economics was an intimate one, Lavoie and other Austrian scholars have challenged (a) Schütz’s characterization of praxeology as an objective science of subjective phenomena and (b) the ability of Schütz’s phenomenology, which emphasizes the subjective meanings of actors, to really make sense of spontaneous social orders. It is my contention, however, that Schütz can be adequately defended against both these charges. First, for Schütz, the claim that social science is an objective science of subjective phenomena need not imply apodictic apriorism nor solipsism. Second, in spite of his emphasis on subjective meanings, the study of spontaneous social orders need not be difficult to justify.
106. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
Petrik Runst Schutzian Methodology as a Progressive Research Agenda Commentary on Lester Embree’s “Economics in the Context of Alfred Schütz’s Theory of Science”
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This article discusses two central methodological postulates (adequacy and subjective meaning) pertaining to the social sciences brought forward by Alfred Schütz, and as presented by Lester Embree’s ‘Economics in the Context of Alfred Schütz’s Theory of Science’. The relationship between the postulates and the actual practice of economics is discussed. The author shows how Schütz’s writings describe a spectrum of methods that ranges from low abstraction and an attempt to understand individual plans and purposes on the one hand to highly abstract and aggregate modeling on the other. It is argued that the distribution of economic contributions is heavily skewed toward the latter. The second part of the article presents recent work by economists who have resisted this trend, and who have begun to expand our understanding of economic processes by taking seriously the notion of economics as a social science.
107. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
Alfred Schutz, Lester Embree, Fred Kersten Problems of a Sociology of Language (Fall Semester, 1958) - Preface and Introduction
108. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
Eugen Fink Comments by Eugen Fink on Alfred Schutz’s Essay, “The Problem of Transcendental Intersubjectivity in Husserl”: (Royaumont, April 28, 1957)
109. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
Alfred Schutz The Problem of Transcendental Intersubjectivity in Husserl
110. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
T. J. Berard Unpacking “Institutional Racism”: Insights from Wittgenstein, Garfinkel, Schutz, Goffman, and Sacks
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Overt racism and discrimination have been on the decline in the United States for at least two generations. Yet many American institutions continue to produce racial disparities. Sociologists and social critics have predominantly explained continuing disparities as results of continuing racism and discrimination, albeit in increasingly covert, anonymous forms; these critics suggest racism and discrimination have to be understood as historical, systemic problems operating at the level of institutions, culture, and society, even if overt forms are now rare. With increasing reliance upon a proliferation of notions including “institutional racism,” “institutionalized discrimination,” and “glass ceilings,” however, scholars and critics alike have grown increasingly dependent upon statistical data on inequalities and institutional outcomes as grounds for theoretical and political inferences concerning collective motives or prejudices. In this crucial respect, insights from beyond studies of race and inequality, drawing especially on Wittgensteinian and Schutzian contributions to social thought, stand to illuminate the pragmatic, moral reasoning at work in the institutional racism argument and similar approaches. Such reflexive attention to a central conceptual resource of contemporary social criticism stands to bring attention back to the basic empirical and critical questions of how to study and engage with continuing inequalities in the post-civil rights era. These questions can certainly be addressed through theoretical stipulation and political claims-making, but a more viable conceptual and empiricalfoundation for both theory and criticism can be gained by attending more respectfully to foundational issues of meaning and interpretation in the human sciences and human relations.
111. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
Mitsuhiro Tada Intentionality of Communication: Theory of Self-Referential Social Systems as Sociological Phenomenology
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The aim of this article is to explore how a self-referential social system, although it is not a human being, can be said to “observe.” For this purpose, the article reformulates Niklas Luhmann’s theory of social systems as sociological phenomenology, or the de-consciousness philosophized phenomenology, because a social system has the same structure of intentionality as consciousness: Just as consciousness is always consciousness of something, communication is always communication of something. In correlation to this communicative intentionality, communicated environments come and go as social phenomena. A social system is not a thing, but an autonomously observing subject. Hence, this systems theory takes on the role of a second-order observer: It observes how social systems as first-order observers observe self-referentially because phenomena given to the natural attitude of the first-order observer constitute multiple social realities in daily life. Therefore, the theory of self-referential social systems is not objectivism, but a variation of mundane subjectivist phenomenology.
112. Schutzian Research: Volume > 2
Valerie Malhotra Bentz, William S. Hamrick, Mary Beth Morrissey Book Reviews
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Hisashi Nasu, Lester Embree, George Psathas, and Ilja Srubar (eds.), Alfred Schutz and His Intellectual Partners; Sandra P. Thomas and Howard R. Pollio, Listening to Patients, A Phenomenological Approach to Nursing Research and Practice; Matthew Ratcliffe, Rethinking Commonsense Psychology: A Critique of Folk Psychology, Theory of Mind and Simulation
113. Social Imaginaries: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Saulius Geniusas Editor’s Introduction
114. Social Imaginaries: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Claudia Baracchi The Cosmos of Imagination
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This essay raises the question of the character and status of imagination in ancient Greek philosophy. It is often said that neither Plato nor Aristotle conceived of imagination in genuinely productive terms. The point, however, is not approaching ancient thought while thinking with Kant, as if we were looking for proto-Kantian insights in antiquity. Ancient thought is not a series of ‘tentative steps’ destined to reach a full-blown articulation in modernity, let alone an anticipation of the first critique. On the contrary, it is essential to acknowledge the discontinuities that make the ancient discourse remote and, in many respects, opaque, hidden from us. On the ground of such assumptions, the essay addresses the understanding of imagination (eikasia, phantasia) in the Greek context, focusing in particular on Plato’s Timaeus. First, we consider how imagination, precisely in its creative aspect, operates at the very heart of philosophical argumentation. Plato’s emphatic awareness of this disallows the rhetoric of philosophy as the discipline of truth (of apodictic necessity, objectivity, and neutrality). In fact, it calls for a profound re-thinking of the relation between creativity and the philosophical turn to the ‘things themselves.’ Timaeus imagines the cosmos as a theatrical device: the place of seeing and being seen, of contemplation and the originary emergence of images. This evokes an understanding of imagination outside the order of subjectivity and its faculties, i.e., a meditation on the impersonal character of production and the force of images (of symbols) arising without being constituted by ‘me.’
115. Social Imaginaries: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Gregory S. Moss Absolute Imagination: the Metaphysics of Romanticism
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Carnap famously argued that metaphysics unavoidably involves a confusion between science and poetry. Unlike the lyric poet, who does not attempt to make an argument, the metaphysician attempts to make an argument while simultaneously lacking in musical talent. Carnap’s objection that metaphysics unavoidably involves a blend of philosophy and poetry is not a 20th century insight. Plato, in his beautifully crafted Phaedo, presents us with the imprisoned Socrates, who having been condemned to death for practicing philosophy in the Apology, has a dream in which he realizes that he ought to make music. In this dialogue, however, Plato indicates no hint of the scorn that Carnap has for metaphysics—rather Socrates’ friends find him setting Aesop’s fables to verse. In the modern era, Nietzsche re-introduced the ‘music making Socrates’ in his Birth of Tragedy. But Nietzsche is not the first to revive the concept in modern philosophy. Before Nietzsche’s call for a new music-making Socrates, the early German Romantics, in particular Schlegel, explicitly called for the identification of poetry and science in the concept of Poesie. As Schlegel writes: ‘Alle Kunst soll Wissenschaft werden, und alle Wissenschaft Kunst werden; Poesie und Philosophie sollen vereinigt sein.’ On the one hand, in Ion Socrates is not wrong to critique Ion for not knowing the significance of his own work. On the other hand, Socrates himself recognizes in Phaedo that he is guilty of failing to heed the call to make music. Long misunderstood, the Romantic concept of Poesie is not mere irrationalism, for it offers an aesthetic metaphysics of the Absolute. Romanticism is indeed a philosophy of the Absolute, but one which cannot conceive of any solution to the profound impasses that confront philosophical knowing except by learning to make music.
116. Social Imaginaries: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Justin Humphreys Aristotelian Imagination and Decaying Sense
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Aristotelian imagination is widely understood as a psychological power by which retained perceptual states recur in consciousness. According to this view, imagination is decaying sense, a part of the psyche that is parasitic on perceptual acts for its content. This paper disputes this reading and provides an alternative account of Aristotle’s concept of imagination. I argue that Aristotelian imagination is a power of the psyche that is both productive like intellect, and presentational like perception. Unlike perception and intellect, however, imagination does not correctly discriminate among beings, and thus cannot be relied upon to give one knowledge of the world. When one accepts this alternative conception of Aristotelian imagination, it becomes clear how it can take on the peculiar epistemic function of allowing a particular serve as the vehicle of a universal thought. This paper argues that Aristotle’s explanation of valid judgments in geometry depends on the imagination to allow the perception of a particular diagram to give rise to the intellectual grasp of a general proposition.
117. Social Imaginaries: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Jagna Brudzińska Imitation and Individuation: The Creative Power of Phantasy
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A crucial feature of our individual biography is grounded in our common corporeal structure. Our life begins with a strong bodily intertwining that has an essential biographical and existential meaning. To elucidate this pre-egological form of connection between subjects, I refer to a peculiar form of sympathetical experience which precedes the intersubjective experience proper. From the genetic phenomenological point of view, sympathetical experience is characterized by a prereflective form of intentionality, which I describe as trans-bodily intentionality, as well as by fusional dynamics realised through a special kind of immediate corporeal fantasy. Focusing on the individuation processes of personal life, I show to which degree trans-bodily intentional dynamics result in the dissolution of the subject’s centricity or at least in its fluidification. Such a fluidification, moreover, should be systematically understood as a condition of possibility for the very process of becoming a Self. In my contribution, I discuss to which degree the corporeal phantasy plays a decisive rule in the creative process of becoming a Self.
118. Social Imaginaries: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Dalius Jonkus Aesthetic A Priori and Embodied Imagination
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This paper discusses the modern idea of imagination and its various transformations in the phenomenological conceptual frameworks of Edward Casey, Mikel Dufrenne (1910-1995), Max Scheler (1874-1928) and Vasily Sesemann (1884-1963). I would like to raise and critically assess questions regarding the role of imagination in our consciousness: whether imagination is a productive or reproductive activity; and how, if at all, aesthetic expression limits the imagination. Casey criticizes Dufrenne for his attempt to unite imagination with aesthetic expression. He argues for the autonomy of the imagination but leaves the question of the relationship between the imagination and perception unanswered. Dufrenne partially shares his theory of imagination with Sesemann. Both philosophers claim that imagination is a reproductive activity rather than a productive one in the sense that it is limited by the forms of the material a priori. In other words, aesthetic expression has to obey the principle of correlation between percipiens and perceptum. Creativity becomes possible when the creator is able to reproduce in his expression another subject’s possible perceptivity. Max Scheler emphasized the correlative connection of spiritual activity with the world. He linked the concept of imagination to the practical being in the world. In Sesemann’s aesthetics the role of embodied imagination in artistic creation and the perception of aesthetic objects were also considered. Both authors argued that the connection between imagination and the essential modes of the world’s givenness is guaranteed by the mode of embodied imagination. Both acknowledged that imagination is related to unconscious desires and drive. Both authors stated that the schematisms of imagination express the style of the perception of the world. The fact that imagination is an embodied phenomenon is illustrated by the way it exists in the world, since imagination is essentially a free activity restricted only by “the style of the world’s horizon.”
119. Social Imaginaries: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Witold Płotka Twardowski, Ingarden, and Blaustein on Creative Imagination: A Study on Early Phenomenology
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The article is a critical elaboration of two phenomenological theories of imagination formulated by Ingarden and Blaustein in their discussion with Twardowski. Ingarden, as well as Blaustein were students of both Twardowski and Husserl, however, they defined imagination in two different contexts: whereas for Ingarden a proper way of analysis of imagination is ontology, for Blaustein imagination is the object of descriptive psychology, connected mainly with an aesthetic experience. As a result, the question of creativity of imagination is described in two different, but intertwined ways. For Ingarden, creative imagination is understood as a noematical structure which generates the imagined object as a purely intentional object. Ingarden’s description expresses the ontological status of the imagined object as ontologically dependent on the act of imagining, and on the content of the imagined object. In his review of Ingarden’s Das literarische Kunstwerk, Blaustein was clear that one has to revise Ingarden’s theory of purely intentional object by adopting it to imaginative intentionality and aesthetic experience. To elaborate Ingarden’s theory of imagination, Blaustein discusses it also with reference to Twardowski. Blaustein claims that Twardowski’s Cartesian differentiation between perceptive, reproductive, and creative imagination is based on a vague criterion, and moreover it does not refer to two key notions of descriptive psychology, i.e., the notion of the representative content, and the intentional object. As a result of his critique, Blaustein limits the concept of creative imagination to ‘fantasy’, understood as secondary imagination.
120. Social Imaginaries: Volume > 5 > Issue: 1
Michela Summa Is Make-Believe Only Reproduction?: Remarks on the Role of Fiction in Shaping Our Sense of Reality
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This paper develops an analysis of the relation between fiction and make-believe based on the achievements of imagination. The argument aims at a “reciprocal supplementation” between two approaches to fiction. According to one approach, pretense or make-believe structures play a crucial role in our experience of fiction. Discussing Husserl’s view on bound imagining and Walton’s account of fiction as make-believe, I show why pretense and make-believe cannot thereby be reduced to the mere reproduction of something we would experience as original. According to the other approach, which is presented in Ricoeur’s work on imagination, fiction exemplifies a productive or creative power of imagination that is not active in pretense or make-believe activities. The reciprocal supplementation between these two approaches concerns the following aspects: on the one hand, I wish show why Husserl and Walton allow us to rectify Ricoeur’s claim that make-believe is only reproductive. On the other hand, taking up some of Ricoeur’s insights, I wish to clarify why such an impact should be understood in terms of transformation.