On the Phenomenology of Pain Cover Image

Zur Phänomenologie des Schmerzes
On the Phenomenology of Pain

Author(s): Niels Weidtmann
Subject(s): Philosophy, Visual Arts, Aesthetics, Phenomenology
Published by: Presa Universitara Clujeana
Keywords: phenomenology; pain; fundamental structure; body; Munch; Merleau-Ponty; Heidegger; Rombach;

Summary/Abstract: In this article I will analyze pain from a phenomenological perspective and demonstrate that it represents a fundamental structure (Grundphänomen) of human beings and their world. In the philosophy of mind pain, as one of the most prominent examples for the relevance of the first-person perspective cannot be explained objectively. A phenomenological approach however reveals that first and third person perspectives of pain must not even be distinguished altogether. Rather than being provoked by an external cause, pain originally accompanies the process of self-differentiation of the human being and the world, i.e. the birth of the human dimension of being or, to put it simply, the birth of human reality. Therefore, pain will be considered as originally referring to the pain of birth. I will outline this interpretation by using reference to Merleau-Ponty, Heidegger and Rombach. It will be shown that some particular examples in visual arts can help in calling our attention to that dimension of human reality from which the phenomenon of pain originates.

  • Issue Year: X/2020
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 175-195
  • Page Count: 21
  • Language: German