The Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-than-human World

Front Cover
Pantheon Books, 1996 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 326 pages
An accomplished sleight-of-hand magician as well as a gifted philosopher, David Abram has lived and traded magic with indigenous sorcerers on several continents. Starting from the intimate relation between these traditional magicians and the animals, plants, and natural elements that surround them, The Spell of the Sensuous draws us into a remarkable series of investigations regarding the fluid, participatory nature of perception, and the reciprocity between our senses and the sensuous earth. The book unfolds into an exploration of language, and of the power our words have to enhance or to stifle the spontaneous life of the senses. Contrasting the spoken stories of diverse indigenous oral cultures with ways of speaking common to literate civilization, The Spell of the Sensuous reveals the profound impact that writing (and the alphabet) has had upon the human experiences of time, of space, of earthly place.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - willszal - LibraryThing

At first glance, you might think that the is a book about philosophy. Abram does cover German philosopher Edmund Husserl and French philosopher Maurice Merleau-Ponty. Both of these thinkers were ... Read full review

THE SPELL OF THE SENSUOUS: Perception and Language in a More-Than-Human World

User Review  - Kirkus

Philosopher and ecologist Abram writes an absorbing, challenging treatise on the power of written language to separate human beings from their experiential relationship to the nonhuman environment ... Read full review

Contents

A PERSONAL INTRODUCTION TO THE INQUIRY
3
Philosophy on the way to Ecology
31
The Flesh of Language
73
Copyright

8 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Bibliographic information