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The Psychology of the Imagination

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The Psychology of the Imagination


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The Psychology of the Imagination by Jean Paul Sartre
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The Psychology of the Imagination was originally published in France in 1940 under the title of L'Imaginaire. It was specifically designed as an essay in phenomenology and it constitutes the first attempts to introduce Husserl's work into French culture,and from there to the English speaking world. Published three years before Being and Nothingness , it reveals Sartre's first extended examination of such concepts as nothingness and freedom, both here derived from the consciousness's ability to imagine objects not only as they are but as they are not, and to imagine objects not in existence. According to Sartre, an object can be given to us in three ways: by perceiving it, by having an idea of it, and by imagining it (having an image of it). Although we may try to respond to the image in the same way as we would to the object itself, the fact remains that an image, however vivid, presents its object as not being. It was in The Psychology of Imagination that Sartre first brought together his new enthusiasm for phenomenology with the analysis of the preconditions for human freedom which was to figure so prominently in his later philosophical works.
Release date NZ
May 11th, 1972
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
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