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Husserl and the Question of Animality

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image of Research in Phenomenology

AbstractIs it possible to speak of a Husserlian phenomenology of the animal? In his phenomenological analyses, Husserl thematizes animals as a case of “abnormality” in order to investigate the subjectivity that constitutes the human world as a normal world. With respect to other perspectives—such as the Heideggerian one—which imply a drastic separation from animality, Husserl’s standpoint has the advantage of keeping a path of communication open between the phenomenological and the scientific investigation of the problem, in the multifarious forms taken on today by the latter. However, what is the original contribution of phenomenology on this issue, in comparison with that of the empirical sciences? Phenomenology addresses the experience of lifeworld as its own field of activity and as the implicit ground for every scientific observation and reconstruction. Phenomenology, thus, provides a new approach to animal life, avoiding naive ontological assumptions about it.

Affiliations: 1: Università degli Studi di Milano, Dipartimento di Filosofia Milano Italy


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