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Philosophical Perspectives on the Self


Edited By Joao Fonseca and Jorge Goncalves

For the last decade the topic of the Self has been under intense scrutiny from researchers of various areas spanning from philosophy, neurosciences, and psychology to anthropology and sociology. The present volume addresses the Self under different and influent philosophical perspectives: from phenomenology and psychoanalysis to metaphysics and neurophilosophy and discusses several and distinct problems such as personal identity, the core/narrative self-distinction, psychopathologies, the mind-body problem and the nature of the relations between self, consciousness and emotions. The book reflects these different philosophical problems and approaches and aims to provide a map of current philosophical perspectives on the topic of the Self.
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Feelings and the Self



All philosophers recognize how crucial the notion of self is for emotional processes – that is, to be emotionally aroused is to feel the self implicated in some way. Both self and emotions are at the center of much philosophical debate and there are on-going debates and disagreements and many unclear issues regarding both topics. However, both concepts seem to share a common trait: there is a sense that both emotion and self are such that their design is never fully complete – that is that they are open-ended entities. Even though both the concept of emotions and the concept of self are continuingly being analyzed and discussed in philosophical debates, this open-ended character of both may be one way to better grasp their nature. In this paper I want to look upon their relationship by focusing as much as possible on their open-ended nature.

The paper argues for a situated approach to the nature of emotion by showing first how a situated approach can bring to the surface interesting connections between the self and the emotional world, and second how such an approach allows us to understand how emotions design the self. The first part of the paper lays down the situated approach to emotion and the many ways in which the implicated self can be understood. The second part of the paper looks at some emotions (fear, love, pride and jealousy) in order to illustrate and elaborate on the conceptual map...

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