Drawing from the recent surge of scholarship on the philosophy of Maurice Merleau-Ponty, this wide-ranging anthology demonstrates the breadth of interests encompassed by this remarkable philosopher's thought. More importantly, the plurality of perspectives here represented suggests that Merleau-Ponty's work has the potential to transcend the divide between 'continental' and 'analytic' (or Anglo-American) philosophy, two traditions that have seemed far more in conflict than communication. As the essays in this volume show, both sides of the divide have everything to gain from engaging the work of one of the twentieth century's most penetrating and provocative philosophers. It is in this spirit of overcoming the polemics from both sides of the rift that editors Lawrence Hass and Dorothea Olkowski offer this collection on very contemporary topics. Divided into seven sections, sixteen articles discuss Merleau-Ponty's contributions to the study of intentionality, cognition and perception, philosophy of the natural and social sciences, ethics, political thought, ontology and genealogy, and philosophy of sexuality and love.
Through this multiplicity and interplay of different orientations, the editors hope to inspire not only a sensitive rereading of this most extraordinary philosopher but also an alternative model for philosophical thought and conversation beyond the divide.
Lawrence Hass is an associate professor of philosophy at Muhlenberg College (Allentown, PA).Dorothea Olkowski is a professor of philosophy at the University of Colorado (Colorado Springs). She is the founder and former director of the Program in Women's Studies.