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The Concept of Affectivity in Sartres Theory of the Image
사르트르의 이미지론에서 정서 개념

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Authors
정은미
Advisor
Peter W. Milne
Major
인문대학 미학과
Issue Date
2016-08
Publisher
서울대학교 대학원
Keywords
Image consciousnessIrreal objectSpontaneityAffective analogonImaginary feelingAppreciation of non-representational painting
Description
학위논문 (석사)-- 서울대학교 대학원 : 미학과, 2016. 8. Peter W. Milne.
Abstract
This thesis is focused on Sartres concept of affectivity in his theory of the image. The image has traditionally been regarded as a representation or a picture in the mind. However, for Sartre, it is the subjects consciousness. And, the image is closely related to affectivity. His own definition of the image renders our understanding of the affectivity different from the commonsensical one. We might think that affectivity is merely subordinate or incidental to the image. However, according to Sartre, affectivity is spontaneously formed and influences on the structure of image consciousness. It is an element of image consciousness. Thus, affectivity is an essential concept in understanding Satres notion of the image. However, it is not easy to clearly understand Sartres conception of affectivity. This is because his description of it is confusing and unsystematic. Another problem is the lack of preceding research. Therefore, in this thesis, I reconstruct Sartres concept of affectivity in a clearer way.
Sartre mentions two kinds of affectivity - affective analogon and imaginary feeling - in his theory of the image. These are both closely involved in image consciousness. But they have distinctive characteristics. First, the former is used to form the image and the latter is our affective consciousness of what we imagined. Second, the former is passive, while the latter is spontaneous. This seems contradictory. In fact, there is a lot of confusion in Sartre scholarship about whether affectivity in image consciousness is spontaneous or passive. Sartre does not clearly articulate them and barely establishes the relation between affective analogon and imaginary feeling.
Thus, in particular, the aim of my thesis is to find passages that can be used to infer this relation and to confirm what its relation should be. And I argue that affective analogon is a reflection of imaginary feeling. This means that the origin of affective analogon is imaginary feeling of subject consciousness. In the relation, the latter always takes the lead. By means of this demonstration of their relation, the spontaneity of imaginary feeling becomes clear. In this way, we can understand why affective analogon is described as passive. Ultimately, we can grasp the spontaneous characteristics of affectivity itself by focusing on the spontaneity of the imaginary feeling. Then, the apparently contradictory characteristic of affectivity is cleared up and, as a result, we could have a proper understanding of affectivity. In addition, when we imagine, the affectivity develops from an undifferentiated state to a constituted state and, in the end, becomes a general feeling. In this process, imaginary feeling can develop into bodily change.
In addition to this conceptual reconstruction, I do the analysis of appreciation of Mark Rothkos non-representational painting, No. 10, in order to specifically understand spontaneous characteristics of affectivity in image consciousness. Non-representational painting does not have cognizable content. This uniqueness demonstrates its affective aspect clearer. Above all, the appreciators are in an undifferentiated affective state, which is inexplicable. And their affective state is reflected as affective analogon into the irreal object of the painting. They do not merely react to this irreal object of No. 10, which is imaged, but rather they decide which feeling they would properly experience in their situation. Then, the undifferentiated affective state becomes constituted. And it constantly projects its reflection into the irreal object. In the end, they encounter their own feeling through No. 10. And the appreciators imaginary feeling has generality. In certain cases, imaginary feeling functions beyond its power with a possibility of accompanying bodily change. For example, we could often see people who cry in front of the work of art.
To sum up, according to my thesis, the conceptual reconstruction and its specific analysis help us better understand the concept of affectivity in Sartres theory of the image and also strengthen its spontaneous characteristics. My thesis has other implications as well. Firstly, this examination gives us the basis of our understanding of the notion of affectivity not only in his theory of the image but also in his larger body of work. Secondly, we could find that this spontaneous affectivity of image consciousness is closely related with the freedom of consciousness. As his theory of the image is fundamentally involved with freedom, so that this thesis provides the possibility of the connection between the affectivity and the freedom by examining the image and its affectivity. Thirdly, such spontaneity or freedom as found in affectivity of image consciousness has some implication such as alleviation of affectivity, freedom, and possibility of choice in our psychic and daily life. Lastly, Sartres understanding of affectivity could provide a very interesting way of understanding the appreciation of the work of art.
Language
English
URI
https://hdl.handle.net/10371/132040
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College of Humanities (인문대학)Aesthetics (미학과)Theses (Master's Degree_미학과)
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