5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 4 August 2011
I agree with the first reviewer that the type errors are pretty bad in this Routledge book alas and it does seem as if they really couldn't be bothered. However, as for the philosophy, it is fantastic. It is a very lucid book overall but this is only because I am reading around it with secondary literature. If you have the time to do this, and moreover if it is necessary for study you are pursuing then one finds that every seemingly poetic inference Merleau-Ponty makes actually has great philosophical importance to it in arguing his position. There are admittedly a great many examples that Merleau-Ponty draws on to illustrate his criticism of traditional philosophical positions in the first half of the book and this can get a bit tiring, but this does serve to clarify the conceptual ground he is clearing very well so that one can really understand where he is coming from in laying down his account of perception in the latter half. Overall a vital read for philosophers and those interested in the most important and pressing epistemological and ontological questions of today.
52 of 57 people found the following review helpful
on 20 October 2007
As I read this book, in a kind of ecstasy I cherish the occasion it gives me for thought and speech. The unlimited fecundity and clairvoyance of Merleau-Ponty's careful guidance is, however, marred by the carelessness of the preparation of this volume. Obvious typographical errors betray both the original text and Colin Smith's translation.
E.g. 'pute sensation' (for 'pure') p. 3, 'reflex are theory' (for 'arc') p. 8, 'receive' (for 'receiver') p. 8.
I appreciate Routledge bringing out a series of wide-ranging and important texts (many in translation) at a price affordable for most. However, the editing or typesetting mistakes occurring every other page give the impression that this edition has been prepared either without competence or without genuine interest.
I recommend buying a different edition of this book.
13 of 19 people found the following review helpful
It's a great shame Merleau-Ponty didn't write more simply and concisely. This is a major work of philosophy, with important original ideas within it.
But it's difficult to sort the message out from the book. I don't think this is a translation problem- a French friend of mine says the original French is still difficult.
I recommend the book, but warn readers it's not an easy read. However if you are a phenomenologist at some stage you'll have to tackle it.