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(1987) Collected philosophical papers, Dordrecht, Springer.

Phenomenon and enigma

Emmanuel Levinas

pp. 61-73

As rational speech, philosophy is taken to move from evidence to evidence, directed to what is seen, to what shows itself, thus directed to the present. The term present suggests both the idea of a privileged position in the temporal series and the idea of manifestation. The idea of being connects them. As a presence, being excludes the non-being that marks the past and the future, but assembles their residues and their germs, which, in structures, are contemporary.1 Being is a manifestation in which the uncertain memory and the aleatory anticipation are moored; being is a presence to the gaze and to speech, an appearing, a phenomenon.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1007/978-94-009-4364-3_5

Full citation:

Levinas, E. (1987). Phenomenon and enigma, in Collected philosophical papers, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 61-73.

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