The pain in the writings of Patočka of the 40s: negative intentionality and the experience of evil

Keywords: Jan Patočka, Phenomenology, Pain, Embodiment


In this paper we present Jan Patočka’s phenomenological analyses of pain, developed in the 1940s. There he indicates an interesting position on pain as experience of evil. Thus, pain is for him a form of “negative intentionality”, in which a particular object is given that annihilates every possible object to which human desires aspire. This thesis of the Czech philosopher not only sheds light on the ensemble of his work but also is pertinent for contemporary philosophical and interdisciplinary discussions on pain.


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