Show Less

The Primordial Dance

Diametric and Concentric Spaces in the Unconscious World

Paul Downes

This book argues that a silent axis of the unconscious world rests largely undiscovered. It recasts foundational concepts in the psychology of Freud, Jung, Carol Gilligan and R.D. Laing, as well as in cognitive science, to highlight this hidden unconscious axis: primordial spaces of diametric and concentric structures. The author generates fresh approaches to understanding the philosophy of early Heidegger and Derrida, with the idea of cross-cultural diametric and concentric spaces fuelling a radical reinterpretation of early Heidegger’s transcendental project, and challenging a postmodern consensus that reduces truths and experiences to mere socially constructed playthings of culture.
The book, which also examines projected structures in modernist art, suggests a systematic refashioning of many Western assumptions, but it is more than a deconstruction. It also attempts to offer a new interplay between structures and meaning, as a spatial phenomenology. This significant expansion of the boundaries of human subjectivity opens alternative pathways for imagining what it means to be human, in order to challenge the reduction of experience to instrumental reason.


Show Summary Details
Restricted access

Part II Spatial-Phenomenology: Interpersonal and Intrapsychic Dimensions


chapter 4 A Spatial-Phenomenological Reinterpretation of the Relational Subject in Gilligan’s Ethic of Care 4.1 Diametric and concentric spatial frames for moral choice: Assumed separation and assumed connection Prior projected spatial structures silently pervade Gilligan’s insights into moral reasoning, as being governed by distinctive, precognitive modes of relation. In her classic work, In a dif ferent voice, Gilligan (1982) highlights assumptions of separation and connection between self and other, as fram- ing dif ferent conceptions of reasoning for moral choice. However, these assumptions have been interpreted in spatial terms in a somewhat rudi- mentary fashion, as a ‘hierarchy’ and a ‘web’ of relationships. For Gilligan (1982), ‘the images of hierarchy and web inform dif ferent modes of assertion and response: the wish to be alone at the top and the consequent fear that others will get too close; the wish to be at the center of connection and the consequent fear of being too far out on the edge’ (p. 62). For a spatial- phenomenological reinterpretation of Gilligan’s work, there is a need for further excavation of these unconscious frames in spatial structural terms. Gilligan’s (1982) qualitative research in a United States cultural context highlighted two contrasting relational states framing moral reasoning. It is these prior relational states or frames that can be interpreted in spatial terms as projected intuitions. One relational state is an assumed connec- tion between self and other in an ‘ethic of care’. She contrasts this with an abstract, hierarchical impersonal ‘logic of justice’ approach, based...

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.

Do you have any questions? Contact us.

Or login to access all content.