José Corá Élsio | Reconnaissance, Intersubjectivity And Ethical Life


The subject and their ‘crisis’, the intersubjectivity and the recognition, the ethics and the practical wisdom are the center of the contemporary philosophical debate and constitute the theme/object of the present doctoral study. Besides, this thesis focused on the main concepts related to the hermeneutics phenomenology that enables to establish a deep and dynamic dialogue with Paul Ricoeur’s philosophy. The study analyzed the connections between the subject and the intersubjectivity, knowing that the establishment of the small ethics weaved in the dense pages of “oneself as another” The subject is at the same time the reader and the writer of their own life and the identity dialectic (ditto-ipse) expresses the own temporality of the human being. For that reason, the identity can only be understood narratively as a life story. Understanding is always to understand oneself in relation to the text. There is no direct appropriation of oneself; the intuitive cogito is a certainty without the truth. By the mediation of the narrative, the self finds its own identity (ipse), recognizing at the same time to itself by the acknowledgment of its sameness during its temporal changes (ditto). There is a reflection about the moral life in all its levels, which allows the author to establish a distinction, although conceptual, between ethics and moral. Ethics is related to the optative, and moral to the imperative. By this interpretation, it is possible to establish, in a first moment, the primacy of ethics. In a second moment,  there is not only the need to pass it by the norm sieve, but also the need to reach the optative when there is conflict between norm and duty. This may define an appeal to the singularity of concrete situations. In this level, the practical wisdom resides, that is, it is a regress to the ethical desire, to the foundation of ethics after the passage through the normative conflict. Based on that, it is the requirement of a practical wisdom that emerges from the interior of the conflict. Each human being is obliged to an inalienable personal project that cannot be done by anyone else. Thus, the ethical is what refers to the attainment of purposes which one proposes himself through the theological aspects of the action. In exchange, the moral will be the obedience to a rule, to a precept, and to a law. Both in the individual life as well as in the collective life, we live in respect and in recognition when we act together. Still, it is through the narrative that the man notices the otherness of the other, that is, sees the other as another self or other-me, and just then the man is a person. The ideal for the person is to ‘live a good a life, with and to the others in fair institutions’’; ideal way that is at the same time, ethical and political. Therefore, the phenomenology of the person prepared by the author is constituted based on four central assumptions: language, narrative, action and ethical life. According to this perspective, the otherness is implicated to an original and deep level in the constitution process of the self. The hermeneutics identity is affected in its interior by a dialectic between action and affection. The identity does not constitute an immediate datum originated from self-determination of the self, but the result of incessant dialectic between oneself and another.  Identified in this manner, the identity implicates in a constitutive mode, in which the recognition of otherness “know oneself” to the human being always means to recognize oneself by the otherness mediation: sign, symbol, text, you, belonging historical context, language, and institution. The intersubjective and social origin of the ricoeurian subject’s self-conscience present in a modality of ipseity is of matrix, namely, Hegelian, but inclined to desire. Based on this, it was possible to prove that the ethical proposal is built in a dialogue with Aristotle, Kant and Rawls. The complex and aware reading that Ricoeur did of Rawls’ proposal contributed to establish the three essential elements of a social character of his ethical conception: the ethical need to the political and institutional reflection against each attempt of dualistic split; the circularity in purpose of the revelation of values; and the golden rule which takes the complex and articulates confrontation between different cultures offering some wisdom which gathers in itself: periods, traditions, different cultures without closing, but also without  remaining in a formal scheme.
Finally, the author makes an explicit referendum to Hegel in the elaboration of his reflection about subjectivity in the moment that he deals with the theme of ethical life. Thus, the concept of the esteem in oneself is defined as a figure of acknowledgment in the written sense and, sharply, Hegelian. This way, it is possible to understand that the acknowledgment is a structure of oneself reflecting on the movement that puts the esteem of oneself versus solicitude and solicitude versus justice. Still, the acknowledgment introduces the dyad and the plurality in real constitution of oneself.
Key-words: Reconnaissance. Intersubjectivity. Text. Ethical life.