The terminological boxes into which we press the history of philosophy often obscure deep and important differences among major figures supposedly belonging to a single school of thought. One such disparity within the phenomenological movement, often overlooked but by no means invisible, separates Merleau-Ponty’s Phenomenology of Perception from the Husserlian program that initially inspired it. For Merleau-Ponty’s phenomenology amounts to a radical, if discreet, departure not only from Husserl’s theory of intentionality generally, but more specifically from his account of the intentional constitution of the body and its role in perceptual experience.
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