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By Wendelin M. Küpers (auth.)

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Extra resources for Phenomenology of the Embodied Organization: The Contribution of Merleau-Ponty for Organizational Studies and Practice

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It will be shown how his advanced form of phenomenology provides a base for a proto-integral consideration and interpretation that is embracing the role of the body, bodies and embodiment in a new relational and non-anthropocentric way that is highly relevant for organizational studies and practices. 1 Responses to criticism of phenomenology As a response to typical (poststructual) criticism particularly concerning the status of supposed ahistorical, immediate, non-interpreted experience (Stoller, 2009), it is important to emphasize that phenomenology addresses the historicity of experience in various ways.

In this way, Merleau-Ponty’s advanced phenomenology and relational ontology provide a dynamic base or medium for developing a post-Cartesian approach and science. This chapter is an introduction to the philosophy of Merleau-Ponty, particularly with regard to his ideas and concepts on organizational and management-related issues and practices. Accordingly, the next sections introduce his central thoughts and elaborations as a basis for discussion in subsequent chapters and their relevance to organizational and management discourses and practices (Chapter 4).

His philosophy also has a power to alleviate lingering problems in social and organizational science and practices. His approach opens new vistas, avenues and expressions for a more integral thinking – living and even ‘singing the world’ (Merleau-Ponty, 1952: 187) of phenomena in organizations. Merleau-Ponty serves as an inspirational source for deepening interrogative inquiries and the much-needed work of renewing our connections with organizing in the world. Importantly, Merleau-Ponty’s phenomenology facilitates the embracing of being as an integral one, of remaining alive and sensitive to being in and with the world and each other as well as celebrating the creative, transformative powers of thought, language and philosophy (Hass, 2008: 9).

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