Quotes from Emmanuel Levinas

Quotes from Emmanuel Levinas - Quotes from Emmanuel Levinas...

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Quotes from Emmanuel Levinas The Alterity or Infinity of the Other: What does Levinas mean when he speaks of another human being in terms of “infinity” or “alterity”? Emmanuel Levinas, Is It Righteous to Be?, p. 49 …Alterity … cannot be summarized in the fact that the other who resembles me has, in his characteristics, another attribute. Normally we say that a thing is other because it has other properties. There you have a piece of white paper, next to it a piece of black pepper —alterity? They are other also by the fact that the one is in one place in space and the other is at another place in space; this is not the alterity that distinguishes you from me. It is not because your hair is unlike mine or because you occupy another place than me— this would only be a difference of properties or of dispositions in space, a difference of attributes. But before any attribute, you are other than I, other otherwise, absolutely other! And it is this alterity, different from the one which is linked to attributes, that is your alterity. This alterity is not justifiable logically; it is logically indiscernible. The identity of the I is not the result of any knowledge whatsoever: I find myself without looking for myself. You are you and I am I. This cannot be reduced to the fact that we differ because of our bodies or because of the color of our hair, or by the place we occupy in space. The Face: What does Levinas mean when he talks about “the face” of the other? Emmanuel Levinas, Ethics and Infinity, p. 85 …access to the face is straightaway ethical. You turn yourself toward the Other as toward an object when you see a nose, eyes, a forehead, a chin, and you can describe them. The best way of encountering the Other is not even to notice the color of his eyes! … The relation with the face can surely be dominated by perception, but what is specifically the face is what cannot be reduced to that. Emmanuel Levinas, Ethics and Infinity, p. 86 The face is signification, and signification without context. I mean that the Other, in the rectitude of his face, is not a character within a context. Ordinarily one is a “character”: a professor at the Sorbonne, a Supreme Court justice, son of so-and-so, everything that is in one’s passport, the manner of dressing, of presenting oneself. And all signification in the usual sense of the term is relative to such a context: the meaning of something is in its relation to another thing. Here, to the contrary, the face is meaning all by itself. You are you. Emmanuel Levinas, Is It Righteous to Be?, p. 48-49
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Quotes from Emmanuel Levinas - Quotes from Emmanuel Levinas...

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