Francis Wolff

800px-Francis_WolffEverything is inside because in order to think anything whatsoever, it is necessary to ‘be able to be conscious of it’, it is necessary to say it, and so we are locked up in language or in consciousness without being able to get out. In this sense, they have no outside. But in another sense, they are entirely turned towards the outside; they are the world’s window: for to be conscious is always to be conscious of something, to speak is necessarily to speak about something. To be conscious of the tree is to be conscious of the tree itself, and not the idea of the tree; to speak about the tree is not just to utter a word but to speak about the thing. Consequently, consciousness and language enclose the world within themselves only insofar as, conversely, they are entirely contained by it. We are in consciousness or language as in a transparent cage. Everything is outside, yet it is impossible to get out.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *