Tradition – An Ambiguous Conjunction of Time, Body and the Other
How are temporality and embodied intersubjectivity connected? In the first part of my essay I highlight some of the ways temporality and embodied intersubjectivity relate to each other in Edmund Husserl’s phenomenological approaches to these topics. Following rising levels of complexity, I show that tradition constitutes an exceptionally dense and interesting intertwining of time, body and the other. Tradition however can manifest in two very different ways: as authentic tradition, and as inauthentic tradition. This ambiguity cannot be explained in terms of time, body and the other alone, but requires a recourse to the constitution (and loss) of meaning. In the second part I therefore discuss the inherent ambiguity of tradition as Husserl and others conceive of it, namely its possibility to function both as carrier of validity and meaning, on the one hand, and as carrier of mere empty convention, on the other.