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Helena De Preester

Helena De Preester
Unversity of Applied Sciences and Arts Ghent + Ghent University

Doctor of Philosophy

About

56
Publications
13,351
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444
Citations
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April 2005 - present
Ghent University
Position
  • Visiting research professor

Publications

Publications (56)
Article
Full-text available
This contribution focuses on one member in particular of the anthropocenic triad Earth – technology – humankind, namely the current form of human subjectivity that characterizes humankind in the Anthropocene. Because knowledge, desire and behavior are always embedded in a particular form of subjectivity, it makes sense to look at the current subjec...
Article
On the basis of Descartes’s account of the passions of the soul, we argue that current interoception-based theories of emotions cannot account for the hallmark of a passion of the soul, i.e., that its effects are felt as being in the soul itself. We also pay attention to the epistemic functions of the passions and to Descartes’s category of emotion...
Chapter
The role of sensations for body experience and body representations such as body image and body schema seems indisputable. This chapter discusses the link between sensory input, the experience of one’s own body, and body representations such as body image and body schema. That happens on the basis of Michel Henry’s radical phenomenology of the body...
Article
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I reply to two comments to my paper “Subjectivity and transcendental illusions in the Anthropocene,” by Johannes Schick and Melentie Pandilovski. Schick expands on the possibility that technical objects become “other” in a Levinasian sense, making use of Simondon’s three-layered structure of technical objects. His proposal is to free technical obje...
Article
Full-text available
This study explores the idea that an observer is sensitive to differences in the static traces of drawings that are due to differences in motor origin. In particular, our aim was to test if an observer is able to discriminate between drawings made by a robot and by a human in the case where the drawings contain salient kinematic cues for discrimina...
Book
Full-text available
This volume brings together contributions by philosophers, art historians and artists who discuss, interpret and analyse the moving and gesturing body in the arts. Broadly inspired by phenomenology, and taking into account insights from cognitive science, the contribution of the motor body in watching a film, attending a dance or theatre performanc...
Book
Throughout the 20th and in the beginning of the 21st century, many artists take up a double role as both art practitioner and writer. In recent years, scholars and the general public have become increasingly interested in artists’ writings. A growing number of collected writings by many major 20th and 21st century artists is now being published in...
Article
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Several recent accounts claim that imagination is a matter of simulating perceptual acts. Although this point of view receives support from both phenomenological and empirical research, I claim that Jean-Paul Sartre's worry formulated in L'imagination (1936) still holds. For a number of reasons, Sartre heavily criticizes theories in which the senso...
Article
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Body integrity identity disorder (BIID), formerly also known as apotemnophilia, is characterized by a desire for amputation of a healthy limb and is claimed to straddle or to even blur the boundary between psychiatry and neurology. The neurological line of approach, however, is a recent one, and is accompanied or preceded by psychodynamical, behavi...
Article
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The main suggestions and objections raised by Don Ihde and Charles Lenay to my ‘Technology and the body: the (im)possibilities of re-embodiment’ are summarized and discussed. On the one hand, I agree that we should pay more attention to whole body experience and to further resisting Cartesian assumptions in the field of cognitive neuroscience and p...
Article
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This article argues for a more rigorous distinction between body extensions on the one hand and incorporation of non-bodily objects into the body on the other hand. Real re-embodiment would be a matter of taking things (most often technologies) into the body, i.e. of incorporation of non-bodily items into the body. This, however, is a difficult pro...
Chapter
Full-text available
In "Sublime historical experience" (2005), Frank Ankersmit argues that the past originates from an experience of rupture. Such an experience of rupture separates the present from the past, and, at the same time, means the beginning of an effort to overcome the separation. Moreover, the experience is precognitive since it precedes (the possibility o...
Article
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Book Review: Don Ihde, Postphenomenology and Technoscience – The Peking University Lectures. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2009 and Embodied Technics. Automatic Press/VIP, 2010. Don Ihde has published two new volumes, which together form a good introduction to his style of philosophy. Whereas the first volume presents the different...
Article
Full-text available
This paper investigates the role of a pre-existing body-model that is an enabling constraint for the incorporation of objects into the body. This body-model is also a basis for the distinction between body extensions (e.g., in the case of tool-use) and incorporation (e.g., in the case of successful prosthesis use). It is argued that, in the case of...
Article
Full-text available
The naturalization of consciousness and the way a subjective perspective arises are hotly debated both in the cognitive sciences and in more strictly philosophical contexts. A number of these debates, mainly inspired by neuroscientific findings, focus on the 'visceral' dimension of the body in order to formulate a hypothesis for the coming about of...
Article
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This article presents two different phenomenological paths leading from ego to alter ego: a Husserlian and a Merleau-Pontian way of thinking. These two phenomenological paths serve to disentangle the conceptual–philosophical underpinning of the mirror neurons system hypothesis, in which both ways of thinking are entwined. A Merleau-Pontian re-readi...
Article
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The aim of this article is to focus on the body as instrument or means in performance-art. Since the body is no monolithic given, the body is approached in terms of its constitutive layers, and this may enable us to conceive of the mechanisms that make performances possible and opera-tional, i.e. those bodily mechanisms that are implicitly or expli...
Article
In this article, an account is given of the relation between naturalism and transcendentalism in the current project of naturalizing phenomenology. This project usually takes the transcendental point of view to be in conflict with the naturalizing attitude and the contemporary sciences of cognition thus seem to require cutting Husserlian phenomenol...
Article
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This paper analyses the actual meaning of a transcendental philosophy of biology, and does so by exploring and actualising the epistemological and metaphysical value of Kant's viewpoint on living systems. It finds inspiration in the Kantian idea of living systems intrinsically resisting objectification, but critically departs from Kant's philosophi...
Chapter
After a brief introduction to Kuipers' views on explanations of laws we argue that micro-explanations of laws can have two formats: they work either by aggregation and transformation (as Kuipers suggests) or by means of function ascriptions (Kuipers neglects this possibility). We compare both types from an epistemic point of view (which information...
Book
The body, as the common ground for objectivity and (inter)subjectivity, is a phenomenon with a perplexing plurality of registers. Therefore, this innovative volume offers an interdisciplinary approach from the fields of neuroscience, phenomenology and psychoanalysis. The concepts of body image and body schema have a firm tradition in each of these...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper, our point of departure is Plato's Phaedrus-dialogue, in which the role and meaning of writing for memory are assessed, focusing special attention on Plato's evaluation of writing. The use of writing-metaphors in elaborating the model of the psychic apparatus in a number of Freud's texts is also discussed. Relying on Derrida's interpr...
Article
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In this article, it is argued that our access to internal/external issues is mediated and enabled by part-whole metaphysics. First, Husserl's distinction between two kinds of parts-pieces and moments-and the way in which they differ is presented, and the relations of foundation by which a whole is constituted are discussed. Next, it is shown that H...
Article
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Both Brentano and Merleau‐Ponty have developed an account of intentionality, which nevertheless differ profoundly in the following respect. According to Brentano, intentionality mainly is a matter of mental presentations. This marks the beginning of phenomenology’s difficult relation with the nature of the intentional reference. Merleau‐Ponty, on t...
Article
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Working from both a phenomenological and a biological background, the conditions under which the emergence of intentionality occurs, are approached. This is done via two particularities of biological systems: the inside/outside distinction they exhibit and the fact that they are sensitive. The phenomenon of boundaries turns out to be a crucial issu...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper we compare two approaches to the distinction between inside and outside or self and non-self. First, we consider the approach of Freud, who offers a conceptual framework in which the inside/outside distinction is a matter of stages. The initially helpless infant effects a number of operations on the basis of the value or quality of th...
Article
Full-text available
This article gives an introductory account of what a "naturalization" of (Husserlian) phenomenology involves. The first part deals with Husserlian phenomenology and Husserl's view on psychology and epistemology. The second part introduces the cognitive sciences and a number of problems concerning subjective experience. The final part presents the n...

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Projects (3)
Project
Eds. Manos Tsakiris & Helena De Preester Oxford University Press Interoception is the body-to-brain axis of signals originating from the internal body and visceral organs (such as gastrointestinal, respiratory, hormonal and circulatory systems), and plays a unique role in ensuring homeostasis. Interoception therefore refers to the sensing of the state of the inner body and its homeostatic needs, that is, to the ever-fluctuating state of the body beneath its sensory (exteroceptive) and musculoskeletal sheath. By bringing together the perspectives of experimental psychology and cognitive neuroscience, psychophysiology, psychiatry, clinical psychology, and philosophy, this volume aims to go beyond the known role of interoception for homeostasis in order to ask, and hopefully provide, important insights on the role that interoception plays for our mental life and lived experience, for awareness, affect and cognition.