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The Surrealist Glance: A Phenomenological Analysis of Surrealism

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The Surrealist Glance: A Phenomenological Analysis of Surrealism

Anna, Gorham (2021) The Surrealist Glance: A Phenomenological Analysis of Surrealism. [Graduate Projects (Non-thesis)] (Unpublished)

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Abstract

This project draws out complementarities between Surrealist art and phenomenology by noting a convergence between the phenomenological effort of suspension and description, and Surrealist automatism. This is achieved by drawing on Edward S. Casey’s effort to complicate phenomenological description by developing an understanding of “peri-phenomenology.” Casey contends that our acquaintance with the world rides on our capacity to glance, on fleeting moments of uncommitted perceptual attention. Attending to these moments is especially hard to do, since moments of glancing are beyond our explicit focus. This challenges classic Husserlian approaches to phenomenology since it necessitates investigation of what goes on in our pre-reflective perceptual experience. I argue that Surrealist practice involves efforts complementary to this challenge, since its methodology seeks to negate our consciousness, which overpowers the neutrality of the world’s givenness. An example is Surrealist automatism, in which the artist tries to pay closer attention to that which is peripheral to our experience. This example shows how the Surrealists are guided by the unconscious and starts to draw out complementarities between this guidance and Casey’s focus on peri-phenomenology.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Philosophy
Item Type:Graduate Projects (Non-thesis)
Authors:Anna, Gorham
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Philosophy
Date:19 September 2021
ID Code:988998
Deposited By: Anna Gorham
Deposited On:07 Oct 2021 20:51
Last Modified:07 Oct 2021 20:51
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