The transformation of intercorporeality in melancholia

Stefano Micali

pp. 215-234

In this article the author seeks to highlight a specific disorder related to bodily experience in melancholia conceived as a severe form of clinical depression. The article is divided into three parts. In the first section, the author investigates the intersubjective dimension of bodily experience in light of the categories of Außen- and Innenleiblichkeit. In the second section, I explore a specific disturbance of the dimension of intercorporeality. The excessive feeling of the bodily (außenleibliche) visibility of his/her own sufferance is a fundamental aspect of depression. At a pre-reflexive level, we constantly assume the noncoincidence between one's own bodily expression and the Other's experience/reading of these expressions. An alteration of this (pre-reflexive) awareness occurs in melancholia. The patient feels as if the melancholic condition would be transparent to the other. In the third section, the author intends to show the alteration of the embodied communication between the melancholic person and the other investigating two particular phenomena: the exchange of gaze in a face to face encounter, and the disturbance of the oral sense, revealing a specific form of irresponsiveness and the experience of void.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1007/s11097-011-9227-x

Full citation:

Micali, S. (2013). The transformation of intercorporeality in melancholia. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 12 (1), pp. 215-234.

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