Staffordshire University logo
STORE - Staffordshire Online Repository

The Structure And Meaning Of Emotion In The Philosophy Of Merleau-Ponty And Sartre

Gilbert, Simon (2018) The Structure And Meaning Of Emotion In The Philosophy Of Merleau-Ponty And Sartre. Doctoral thesis, Staffordshire University.

Simon Gilbert Final thesis.pdf - Submitted Version
Available under License All Rights Reserved.

Download (1MB) | Preview
[img] Text (Ethos Agreement)
Gilbert Ethos.pdf
Restricted to Repository staff only
Available under License All Rights Reserved.

Download (159kB)

Abstract or description

The aim of the thesis is to explore whether the early phenomenological works of Sartre and Merleau-Ponty can be used to create a satisfactory phenomenological account of emotion, and if so what the major concepts of this account are.

Sartre, throughout all the works examined, describes a wide range of emotions, emotional situations and behaviours. He expresses the embodiment of human existence, which can then be applied to its affective dimension. He also examines the relation between the qualities of objects and being, how they have meaning for us, and how the passions relate to our decisions and choices. He formulates the phenomenological characteristics of emotion and affectivity. His fullest and most explicit attempt at this in Sketch for a Theory of the Emotions is flawed, mainly because of his theory of emotion as a magical transformation of the world
Merleau-Ponty shows limited interest in the affective aspect of our relationship to the world. In The Structure of Behaviour he describes the structure of existence and consciousness, which details the integration of the physical, mental and cultural. This can be used to explain the physiological aspects of emotions and affects and their groundedness in the lived experience of the body. This continues in Phenomenology of Perception. Although his main focus is perception, he examines sexuality as a privileged area of our affective life. He also explores the way that we valorise objects in the world and make decisions based on our individual ways of being.

An interesting feature in both authors is the stress on behaviour. Here we see the close relationship between behaviour and existentialism, in its concern with the ‘movement of existence’.

I have formulated a synthesis of the major points arising from the close reading of relevant passages from the works concerned. This provides a framework for a general phenomenological account of affectivity and emotion and a basis on which analyses of the experience of particular affects and emotions could be undertaken.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty: School of Digital, Technologies and Arts > English, Creative Writing and Philosophy
Depositing User: Library STORE team
Date Deposited: 15 Mar 2023 12:13
Last Modified: 15 Mar 2023 12:13

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

DisabledGo Staffordshire University is a recognised   Investor in People. Sustain Staffs
Legal | Freedom of Information | Site Map | Job Vacancies
Staffordshire University, College Road, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire ST4 2DE t: +44 (0)1782 294000