Merleau-Ponty’s Chiasmus

| May 3, 2012

Visible and Invisible, p.266 (November 1960)

the idea of chiasm, that is: every relation with being is simultaneously a taking and a being taken, the hold is held, it is inscribed and inscribed in the same being that it takes hold of.

Starting from there, elaborate an idea of philosophy: it cannot be total and active grasp, intellectual possession, since what there is to be grasped is a disposession — It is  not above life, overhanging.  It is beneath.  It is the simultaneous experience of the holding and the held in all orders.  What it says, its significations, are not absolutely invisible: it shows by words.  Like all literature.  It does not install itself in the reverse of the visible: it is on both sides

No absolute difference, therefore, between philosophy or the transcendental and the empirical (it is better to say: the ontological and the ontic) — No absolutely pure philosophical word.  No purely philosophical politics, for example, no philosophical rigorism, when it is a question of a Manifesto.