I was going to try to give a brief rundown on some philosophies and my take on their take on what I see as three major issues, in the following order:
- The Subject-Object distinction
- The problem of the personal body
- The problem of ‘other selves’
However, “Am I my own other?” , a new post on Andy Jackson’s blog, has led me to tackle 3. first.
For the philosophies (together known as Dualism ) that subscribe to 1. i.e. make a hard distinction between subject and object, mind and matter, inner consciousness and external world, the issues of 2. (the body) and 3. (other selves) seem to raise a profound ambiguity (not to say contradiction) which needs to be accounted for.
My response will be to dive straight into the deep end of Merleau-Ponty’s book “Phenomenology of Perception”, namely the chapter (Part II, 4) Other Selves and the Human World, with a potted summary and extensive quotes.
But that will have to wait for next time.