L14_SartreBeingNothingness

L14_SartreBeingNothi - PHI 310 Lecture 14 Sartres Being and Nothingness Sartre on consciousness Sartres first works such as The Transcendence of

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
PHI 310 Lecture 14: Sartre’s Being and Nothingness Sartre on consciousness Sartre’s first works, such as The Transcendence of the Ego (1936) and Being and Nothingness: An Essay of Phenomenological Ontology (1943), were rather of phenomenological nature than pure existential treaties. The impact of the phenomenological approach on his thinking was profound, for it offered him an exact and open-ended method for bringing together many of his prior interest in the “nature” of human being, consciousness, psychological schemes, and the process of imaginative recreation. Sartre uses the term consciousness as the most general term for what we would usually describe by the verbs “see”, “feel”, “think about”, “imagine”, etc. All this implies that the individual is conscious of something (thus consciousness is intentional, that is, it is directed toward an object). Descartes makes a distinction between what consciousness is in itself and what physical processes may occur during consciousness. Descartes was committed to representationalism , the view that when we think, we are not directly in touch with the object or fact we are thinking about. Instead, according to Descartes, to think about X is to have an idea, representation, or concept of X which, like the act of thinking itself, exists in the mind. In Descartes’ view: 1) the structure of consciousness requires a substantial self or ego as the subject or owner of consciousness; 2) consciousness of an object involves some relation between the substantial “I” and an object; 3) consciousness contains ideas, concepts, or more generally representations, of what it is about. Sartre rejects each of these three aspects of Cartesian view: 1) consciousness is neither a substance nor a property; 2) consciousness is neither “owned” nor inhabited by a mental substance; 3) consciousness is neither relation between a mental substance and an object nor a container with something in it. According to Sartre, the first essential feature of consciousness is its intentionality (its being
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 04/20/2010 for the course PHI 310 taught by Professor Bykova during the Spring '10 term at N.C. State.

Page1 / 3

L14_SartreBeingNothi - PHI 310 Lecture 14 Sartres Being and Nothingness Sartre on consciousness Sartres first works such as The Transcendence of

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online