Chapter

At the Threshold: <i>Foreigners, Strangers, Others</i>

RICHARD KEARNEY and KASCHA SEMONOVITCH

in Phenomenologies of the Stranger

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780823234615
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823240722 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5422/fordham/9780823234615.003.0001

Series: Perspectives in Continental Philosophy

At the Threshold: Foreigners, Strangers, Others

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What exactly do we mean by “Stranger”? The Stranger, as we understand it, is not identical with the “Other” or with the “Foreigner.” Metaphorically, we can see “thresholds” defining the edges of human being in many ways: for example, you find a threshold at the limits of your physical body, a threshold of pain, of pleasure, a threshold at the limits of one culture and another, one political group and another. At such thresholds of experience, we stand in an event: an opening onto hospitality. Phenomenology has a particular place in the history of philosophy as a practice of perceiving and attending to the strange in ordinary experience. In dealing with the Stranger, this book concentrates on the phenomenological tradition inaugurated by Edmund Husserl at the outset of the twentieth century and extending through Martin Heidegger, Emmanuel Levinas, and Maurice Merleau-Ponty to the hermeneutics of Paul Ricoeur, the deconstruction of Jacques Derrida, and the psycho-semiotics of Julia Kristeva.

Keywords: Stranger; Other; Foreigner; phenomenology; Edmund Husserl; Julia Kristeva; thresholds; psycho-semiotics; hermeneutics; hospitality

Chapter.  11830 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Religion

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