Chad Engelland

Chad Engelland is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Chair of the Philosophy Department at the University of Dallas. He is the author of Heidegger's Shadow: Kant, Husserl, and the Transcendental Turn; The Way of Philosophy: An Introduction; and Ostension: Word Learning and the Embodied Mind (MIT Press).

  • Phenomenology

    Phenomenology

    Chad Engelland

    A concise and accessible introduction to phenomenology, which investigates the experience of experience.

    This volume in the MIT Press Essential Knowledge series offers a concise and accessible introduction to phenomenology, a philosophical movement that investigates the experience of experience. Founded by Edmund Husserl (1859–1938) and expounded by Max Scheler, Martin Heidegger, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, and others, phenomenology ventures forth into the field of experience so that truth might be met in the flesh. It investigates everything as experienced. It does not study mere appearance but the true appearances of things, holding that the unfolding of experience allows us to sort true appearances from mere appearance.

    The book unpacks a series of terms—world, flesh, speech, life, truth, love, and wonder—all of which are bound up with each other in experience. For example, world is where experience takes place; flesh names the way our experiential exploration is inscribed into the bearings of our bodily being; speech is instituted in bodily presence; truth concerns the way our claims about things are confirmed by our experience. A chapter on the phenomenological method describes it as a means of clarifying the modality of experience that is written into its very fabric; and a chapter on the phenomenological movement bridges its divisions while responding to criticisms from analytic philosophy and postmodernism.

    • Paperback $15.95
  • Ostension

    Ostension

    Word Learning and the Embodied Mind

    Chad Engelland

    An examination of the role of ostension—the bodily manifestation of intention—-in word learning, and an investigation of the philosophical puzzles it poses.

    Ostension is bodily movement that manifests our engagement with things, whether we wish it to or not. Gestures, glances, facial expressions: all betray our interest in something. Ostension enables our first word learning, providing infants with a prelinguistic way to grasp the meaning of words. Ostension is philosophically puzzling; it cuts across domains seemingly unbridgeable—public–private, inner–outer, mind–body. In this book, Chad Engelland offers a philosophical investigation of ostension and its role in word learning by infants.

    Engelland discusses ostension (distinguishing it from ostensive definition) in contemporary philosophy, examining accounts by Quine, Davidson, and Gadamer, and he explores relevant empirical findings in psychology, evolutionary anthropology, and neuroscience. He offers original studies of four representative historical thinkers whose work enriches the understanding of ostension: Wittgenstein, Merleau-Ponty, Augustine, and Aristotle. And, building on these philosophical and empirical foundations, Engelland offers a meticulous analysis of the philosophical issues raised by ostension. He examines the phenomenological problem of whether embodied intentions are manifest or inferred; the problem of what concept of mind allows ostensive cues to be intersubjectively available; the epistemological problem of how ostensive cues, notoriously ambiguous, can be correctly understood; and the metaphysical problem of the ultimate status of the key terms in his argument: animate movement, language, and mind. Finally, he argues for the centrality of manifestation in philosophy. Taking ostension seriously, he proposes, has far-reaching implications for thinking about language and the practice of philosophy.

    • Hardcover $45.00