Emotions in Heidegger and Sartre

In Peter Goldie (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Emotion. Oxford University Press (2009)
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Phenomenology has done more than any other school of thought for bringing emotions to the forefront of philosophical inquiry. The main reason for the interest shown by phenomenologists in the nature of emotions is perhaps not easily discernible. It might be thought that phenomenologists focus on emotions because the felt the quality of most emotional states renders them a privileged object of inquiry into the phenomenal properties of human experience. That view, in its turn, might lead one to think that phenomenologists attend to emotional experience for its highly subjective character. On the contrary, it is the ability of emotions to engage with reality that makes them crucial for phenomenological analysis. Emotional experience is an opening to the salient features of a situation; undergoing an emotion is a way – and, for some phenomenologists, the principal way – in which the world manifests itself to us. The exact character of that manifestation will be the main topic of discussion in the present chapter. We look at the two major accounts of the way in which that manifestation is structured. The first account is due to Martin Heidegger, and the second is articulated in the writings of Jean-Paul Sartre.

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Anthony Hatzimoysis
National and Kapodistrian University of Athens


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