Towards a phenomenology of sagesse : Uncovering the unique philosophical problematic of Pierre Hadot

Journal article


Sharpe, Matthew. (2018). Towards a phenomenology of sagesse : Uncovering the unique philosophical problematic of Pierre Hadot. Angelaki: Journal of the Theoretical Humanities. 23(2), pp. 125-138. https://doi.org/10.1080/0969725X.2018.1451475
AuthorsSharpe, Matthew
Abstract

This paper starts from the contention that Pierre Hadot’s unusually divided reception reflects the different dimensions of Hadot’s own scholarly profile. Hadot’s largely favourable reception amongst historians of ideas responds to the philological dimension of his work, but misses the implicit normativity involved in his recovery of the sense of ancient philosophy as a way of life. Analytic critics have registered but contested this normativity in ways that arguably also misrepresent his work. This paper contends that both receptions of Hadot have missed what can be called Hadot’s unique philosophical problematic: uncovering through the ancient sources a kind of phenomenology of how a person would perceive and evaluate the world who had, counter-factually, attained a wholly enlightened, wholly “sage” mode of living. This phenomenology of sagesse, which is predicated on a metaphysical agnosticism, proves closer to the last Foucault than Hadot sometimes suggested: albeit embodying an aesthetics of “the whole,” over against Foucault’s aesthetics of (human) existence.

KeywordsPierre Hadot; philosophy as a way of life; problematic; last Foucault; phenomenology
Year2018
JournalAngelaki: Journal of the Theoretical Humanities
Journal citation23 (2), pp. 125-138
PublisherRoutledge
ISSN0969-725X
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1080/0969725X.2018.1451475
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85045434732
Page range125-138
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All rights reserved
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Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online10 Apr 2018
Publication process dates
Deposited09 Nov 2023
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