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Phenomenologies of the StrangerBetween Hostility and Hospitality$
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Richard Kearney and Kascha Semonovitch

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780823234615

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823234615.001.0001

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Chapter:
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Phenomenologies of the Stranger
Author(s):

RICHARD KEARNEY

KASCHA SEMONOVITCH

Publisher:
Fordham University Press
DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823234615.003.0002

How does the embodied imagination relate to the Stranger in terms of hospitality or hostility? What exactly do “embodied imaginaries” of hospitality and hostility entail and how do they operate in language, psychology and social interrelations (including xenophobia and genocide)? And what are the topical implications of these questions for an ethical practice of tolerance and peace? The essays which follow offer subtle and refined attention to the many Strangers — human, divine, animal and other — who appear, disappear or refuse to appear at all. This volume is divided into four parts. Part I interrogates hospitality as a liminal phenomenon: the relation of hospitality to place, the experience of borders, thresholds, frontiers, and portals. Part II explores the dramatic ambivalence at the heart of human encounters with a radical alterity we might call “sacred strangeness.” Part III considers the Stranger who finds us not-at-home, literally or figuratively, in our place, language or history. Part IV addresses critical implications of the work of Martin Heidegger, Emmanuel Levinas, and Jacques Derrida.

Keywords:   Stranger, hospitality, hostility, embodied imaginaries, tolerance, peace, sacred strangeness, Martin Heidegger, Emmanuel Levinas, Jacques Derrida

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