Phenomenological reflections on instincts
The familiar Husserlian conception of fulfillment involves a contrast between the same content as being represented emptily and then (more) fully, and also the idea that the empty givenness is rightly conceived in terms of anticipations of fullness. Since perceptual experiences provide a paradigmatic case of such fulfillment, I will call it “P-fulfillment.” Additionally, there is also the fulfillment of our wants, wishes, and desires. Taking wants as the paradigmatic case, I will call it “W-fulfillment.” In this paper, I consider the applicability of these conceptions of fulfillment to Husserl’s views of instincts, and conclude that the fulfillment of instincts is best understood not as P-fulfillment or W-fulfillment, but as sui generis, “I-fulfillment,” which is distinguished by its peculiarly retrospective nature, and by the fact that when it reveals something, it can also give rise to determinacy where previously there was none.
Laasik, K. (2018). Phenomenological reflections on instincts. Studia Phaenomenologica 18, pp. n/a.
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