Haptic Experience in the Writings of Georges Bataille, Maurice Blanchot and Michel Serres

Series: Modern French Identities (116)

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Our sensory relationships with the social and biological world have altered appreciably as a result of recent developments in internet and other mobile communication technologies. We now look at a screen, we touch either the screen or a keyboard in response to what we see and, somehow, an element of our sensory presence is transmitted elsewhere. It is often claimed that this change in the way we perceive the world and each other is without precedent, and is solely the result of twenty-first-century life and technologies. This book argues otherwise. The author analyses the evolving portrayals of `haptic' sensations - that is, sensations that are at once tactile and visual - in the theories and prose of the writer-philosophers Georges Bataille (1897-1962), Maurice Blanchot (1907-2003) and Michel Serres (1930-). In exploring haptic perception in the works of Bataille, Blanchot and Serres, the author examines haptic theories postulated by Alois Riegl, Laura U. Marks, Mark Paterson and Jean-Luc Nancy.