By Miran Bozovic
Slovenian thinker Miran Bozovic's An totally darkish Spot examines the elusive prestige of the physique in early sleek eu philosophy via studying its quite a few encounters with the gaze. Its diversity is striking, relocating from the Greek philosophers and theorists of the physique (Aristotle, Plato, Hippocratic scientific writers) to early smooth thinkers (Spinoza, Leibniz, Malebranche, Descartes, Bentham) to trendy figures together with Jon Elster, Lacan, Althusser, Alfred Hitchcock, Stephen J. Gould, and others. Bozovic offers startling glimpses into a number of international mentalities haunted by way of difficulties of divinity, immortality, production, nature, and hope, scary insights that invert prevalent assumptions concerning the dating among brain and body.
The standpoint is Lacanian, yet Bozovic explores the idiosyncrasies of his fabric (e.g., the our bodies of the Scythians, the transvestites reworked and disguised for the gaze of God; or Adam's physique, which remained unseen so long as it was once the single one in lifestyles) with an realization to element that's unprecedented between Lacanian theorists. The procedure makes for attractive studying, as Bozovic levels imagined encounters among major thinkers, letting them speak approximately matters that every explored, yet in a special time and position. whereas its concentration is on a specific challenge within the heritage of philosophy, An totally darkish Spot will entice these attracted to cultural experiences, semiotics, theology, the historical past of faith, and political philosophy to boot.
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Extra resources for An Utterly Dark Spot: Gaze and Body in Early Modern Philosophy (The Body, In Theory: Histories of Cultural Materialism)
Since, strictly speaking, "we are not our body,,,27 we could exist without it. However, we do not know that "we are not our body," because God deliberately keeps us ignorant of our true nature. There is, then, in universal Reason an idea-the idea of our mind-that God is not willing to reveal to us despite all of our mind's attention. The reason for God's withholding the idea of our mind from ourselves is for us to preserve the body we animate: if the idea of our mind were accessible to us, in other words, if we thus clearly 47 An Utterly Dark Spot saw what we really were, we would no longer look after the body that God has ordered us to preserve.
As souls are immortal, nothing fatal could befall them-possibly they would simply crowd each other, competing for a newborn body. On the other hand, what would happen to bodies in the case that the number of animals born exceeded the number dying, that is, in the case that there were more bodies than souls? In this instance, the bodies would be forced to wait for souls to be poured into them. "l7 Hence, for Leibniz there is no birth or death, no generation or corruption. "l8 Throughout the process of transformations a rudimentary living body persists-a sublime body that is exempted from the cycle of generation and corruption: this body is "already living" before birth, and "still alive" even after death.
By loving me, he sees in me the cause of his joy. When I perceive myself as the object of his love, I know that, in the other's eyes, I am the (external) cause of his joy. According to proposition 33, a demand for reciprocity necessarily ensues. The other is now striving, as far as he can, to bring it about that I should love him in return; he wants me to return his love. According to proposition 41, whether I will return the other's love or not depends on whether or not I believe I have given him cause for his love: If I believe I have given just cause for the other's love, I shall exult at being esteemed.
An Utterly Dark Spot: Gaze and Body in Early Modern Philosophy (The Body, In Theory: Histories of Cultural Materialism) by Miran Bozovic