The Other as a Phenomenon of Icon in Jean-Luc Marion's Philosophy

Dissertation, Vytautas Magnus University (2016)
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In the thesis a description of the other person as a phenomenon of icon in thinking of a contemporary French philosopher Jean-Luc Marion is researched. A question is raised how the icon (as Marion describes it) can be recognized in the face of the other. A notion of “iconic visibility” is accepted and employed to study how phenomenal “structure” of the first icon – Christ – repeats itself in the face of the other. Main features allowing to interpret the face as the icon from the phenomenological and not theological point of view are displayed. “Subject” capable of recognizing the icon is researched in detail. It is argumented why the gifted should not be considered to be a passive object-like givee and why the other is not the only active subject-like pole of the phenomenon. Features of Marion’s conception of the icon which determine the initial lack of evidence of the phenomenon are disclosed. It is shown that the difficulty of recognition of the icon is inherent to the description of the phenomenon. The role of the phenomenon of love for the appearing of the icon is highlighted and Marion’s conception of love is discussed. A possibility to demonstrate the icon as a final and inevitable interpretation of the face of the other was not found. It is reasoned that the possibility of such demonstration is prohibited in the very definition of the phenomenon. In spite of that it was shown how such a phenomenon may appear, therefore, lack of proof does not deny the possibility of appearing.
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