ABSTRACT

The title of this chapter is a phrase I have lifted out from one of Heidegger’s essays on language.1 In the context of that essay, the focus is on thinking. The body, that to which his word ‘bearing’ (das Gebärde) alludes, remains, however, unthought. And yet ‘thinking,’ for Heidegger, is no longer to be understood as a coherent succession of disembodied cogitationes. In the wake of Heidegger’s deconstruction, are we not compelled to ackowledge that, so long as the bearing of the body, the body as that which bears thought, has not been raised up into explicit awareness, the tradition of Cartesian metaphysics will continue to hold us in its power? In the framework of that tradition, as Merleau-Ponty has argued, ‘thinking’ is intellectualized, while our embodiment is represented as a physical substance and reduced to the ontology of a mechanism determined solely by physiological laws.