Imagination, language, and the perceptual world

a post-analytic phenomenology

Paul Crowther

pp. 37-56

This paper seeks to integrate analytic philosophy and phenomenology. It does so through an approach generated, specifically, in relation to imagination and its cognitive significance. As an Introduction, some reservations about existing phenomenological approaches to imagination—in the work of Sartre and Edward S. Casey—are considered. It is argued that their introspective psychological approach needs to be qualified through a more analytic orientation that determines essence, initially, on the basis of public discourse concerning the term "imagination.' Part One then articulates this orientation through an "analytic reduction' that identifies imagination's essence in public discourse as thought in its quasi-sensory mode. Part Two offers a sustained phenomenological investigation of this essence, and identifies four major intrinsic features. On the basis of this, Part Three shows how imagination is implicated, centrally, in the capacity to acquire language. In Conclusion the proceeding arguments are defended against possible objections, and a final key summarizing argument is formulated to show that imagination must be regarded, also, as necessary to perception and its capacity to articulate a world. The paper ends with a few thoughts on the further potential of post-analytic phenomenology.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1007/s11007-013-9247-z

Full citation:

Crowther, P. (2013). Imagination, language, and the perceptual world: a post-analytic phenomenology. Continental Philosophy Review 46 (1), pp. 37-56.

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