The Political Horizon of Merleau-Ponty’s Ontology

To Tony O’Connor, in memory of Martin C. Dillon
  • Duane H. Davis
Part of the Contributions To Phenomenology book series (CTPH, volume 64)


I argue that Merleau-Ponty’s account of Being is best understood when we attend to its provenance, situated within the continuous development of his thought over his career. More specifically, we need to call attention to the political horizon of this ontology as it emerged in Merleau-Ponty’s thought, which has received insufficient attention in secondary literature. The impulse for Merleau-Ponty’s ontology develops from his political disagreements with Jean-Paul Sartre, and emerges through several phases: a new philosophy of history, a philosophy of nature, which leads finally to the incomplete ontology of his final works.


Philosophical Position Traditional Phenomenology Fundamental Ontology Existential Phenomenology Dialectical Philosophy 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of North CarolinaAshevilleUSA
  2. 2.Distinguished Scholar in Residence [Visiting Research Professor of Philosophy]Pontificia Universidade Católica do Paraná CuritibaCuritibaBrasil

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