Phenomenology of Perception Around the World: A 75th Anniversary Broadcast Series

Phenomenology of Perception Around the World is a video series celebrating the 75th anniversary of Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s 1945 Phenomenology of Perception. A project of the International Merleau-Ponty Circle and Chiasmi International, the series celebrates the history, impact, and prospects of this book in philosophy, arts, and other disciplines, with videos by scholars and artists around the world. The released videos can be watched here.

Merleau-Ponty and the Toronto Seminar: A Story of Philosophical Community – Launch 16 April 2021

Merleau-Ponty and the Toronto Seminar: A Story of Philosophical Community explores the significance of Merleau-Ponty’s Phenomenology of Perception for a group of scholars connected through a philosophy seminar that has taken place annually in Toronto for nearly twenty years. Laura McMahon interviews Toronto Seminar founder and organizer John Russon and Merleau-Ponty scholars Kirsten Jacobson, Kym Maclaren, and Scott Marratto about central concepts and features of Merleau-Ponty’s work—the creative nature of phenomenological description, the challenge to mind-body dualism, the rigorous engagement with the natural sciences, the nature of institution and intercorporeality—and their importance for contemporary research on the body, intersubjectivity, and health.

The featured scholars also speak to how the collective thinking that takes place at the Toronto Seminar has shaped their philosophical identities. This video is both an educational introduction to some of what is most insightful and exciting about Merleau-Ponty’s philosophy, and a reflection on the power of thinking together in philosophical community.

The launch event will feature the world premiere of the film, followed by a discussion of it with its makers and interviewees Laura McMahon, John Russon, Kirsten Jacobson, Scott Marratto and Kym Maclaren (Canada & USA) with host David Morris (Canada), and then a question and answer session with the audience. The launch is via a Zoom Webinar, on 16 April 2021, 16:00-17:30 EST (Montreal). The event is free to attend but requires registration.

Les Paysages Phénoménologiques des Étangs du Limousin

Les Paysages Phénoménologiques des Étangs du Limousin, a philosophy video that is the third in a series on Phenomenology of Perception Around the World, is ready to launch! The launch event will feature the world premiere of the film, followed by a discussion of it with its maker, Adèle Beaufils (France) and hosts David Morris (Canada) and Ted Toadvine (France), and then a question and answer session with the audience. The launch is via a Zoom Webinar, on 18 December 2020, 13:00-14:00 EST (Montreal). It is free but requires registration. Note that the film is in French, with English subtitles. For the discussion, answers will be in French and/or English, and questions from the audience can be posed in French or English.

Les Paysages Phénoménologiques des Étangs du Limousin explores our way of perceiving our own environment, our being part of it. To do so, this short film calls on Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s works on perception—and the origin of our own knowledge.

1945: de Paris à Lyon, contextes et réceptions de la Phénoménologie de la perception

The second video in the Phenomenology of Perception Around the World series is 1945: de Paris à Lyon, contextes et réceptions de la Phénoménologie de la perceptionThe film will be launched in an online webinar on 11 December 2020, 13:00-14:15 EST (Montreal), with the filmmaker Morgane Blaine (France), hosted by David Morris (Canada) and Stefan Kristensen (France). Those interested in attending the launch can register for the session here. Note that the film is in French, with English subtitles; the discussion and Q & A session will primarily be in French, with questions posed in French or English.

This documentary sheds new light on little-known aspects of the period in which Merleau-Ponty taught in Lyon, in 1945. Based on unpublished archival material, presented here for the first time, it provides an analysis of this intellectual context and the various receptions of the Phenomenology of Perception.
Ce documentaire jette une lumière nouvelle sur des aspects méconnus de l’enseignement de Merleau-Ponty à Lyon, en 1945. A partir de matériaux d’archives inédits, présenté ici pour la première fois, il avance une analyse des jeux de réceptions de la Phénoménologie de la perception.

They Roam Together

The first video in the Phenomenology of Perception Around the World series is They Roam Together. The film will be launched in an online webinar on 4 December 2020, 13h-14h EST (Montreal), with the filmmakers Antony Fredriksson (Finland), Veronika Janatková (Czech Republic), hosted by David Morris (Canada). Those interested in attending the launch can register for the session here. The video can be watched on Vimeo here.

They Roam Together illustrates some pivotal ideas of Maurice Merleau-Ponty concerning intercorporeality and shared perception. The film investigates the question: How come two beings, having two different kinds of sense of perception, perceive the same things? Or do they?

The film invites the viewer on a journey that explores these philosophical questions against the backdrop of a small Czech village. It wanders and wonders with its main characters, in a triptych that dives into daily situations and inspects the way perception is shared between human beings, and humans and non-human animals.

The film’s intimate visual language explores our ability to share our sight, our hearing and our attention with another living being. It approaches questions concerning embodiment and shared perception through observations of the protagonists’s experience of space and the surrounding landscapes and soundscapes. Guided by the subtle voice-over of personal reflections of the protagonist and quotes by Merleau-Ponty, the film aims to visualize their experience of watching, feeling, smelling, and noticing, in communion.