By Edward F. Findlay
The 1st complete exploration of the political considered Jan Patocka, pupil of Husserl and Heidegger and mentor of Vaclav Havel.
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Additional info for Caring for the Soul in a Postmodern Age: Politics and Phenomenology in the Thought of Jan Patocka
It was Heidegger rather than Husserl who resisted this presumption, arguing that there is an element of “concealment” that must be considered. By taking up this phenomenon thematically, Heidegger’s work had an advantage over Husserl’s and so became a model for Patocˇka’s pursuit. ”84 The subject of Patocˇka’s debt to and interpretation of Heidegger is a vast one. Here I will limit myself to a few, basic points. Patocˇka is convinced Caring Chap. 2 36 6/27/02 4:13 PM Page 36 “Concrete Humans in Their Corporeal World” that human existence requires consideration of man’s interaction with his world, the things in it, and the multitude of possibilities created by that interaction.
Caring Chap. 2 24 6/27/02 4:12 PM Page 24 “Concrete Humans in Their Corporeal World” The phenomenology pursued by Patocˇka is not to be confused with a repetition of the technique of Husserl, however. “By phenomenology we shall not mean the teachings of Husserl,” he writes at the start of Body, Community, Language, World. ”33 Patocˇka’s approach to philosophy is not primarily a method. It is rather a thematic attempt to clarify its experiential essence. Phenomenology as Patocˇka pursues it is a means to place distance between the art of human self-reflection and the metaphysical baggage that has accumulated around philosophy as practiced in Europe for more than two thousand years.
100 In the adult human the mode of understanding may be dominant, but this does not mean that the modes of humanity that are prior to understanding simply cease to be of importance. In fact, human activity may partake of different levels of being, including the animal’s and the child’s prelinguistic mode, relating simply and directly to the world. ”101 Thus the mode of understanding pursued by Heidegger does not exhaust human reality. The direct relation to the world of the child and the animal belongs to what Patocˇka calls the first movement of being human, and is contrasted with modes of human movement through work and philosophy.
Caring for the Soul in a Postmodern Age: Politics and Phenomenology in the Thought of Jan Patocka by Edward F. Findlay