Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 25 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Tracing the genesis of the notion of the face in a series of early writings published between 1947 and 1954, this essay shows that this notion does not develop in a linear fashion but through several distinct lines of argument that are then welded or woven together without being completely unified. Although this braided structure makes the notion of the face an exceptionally powerful and flexible tool in Levinas’s philosophical repertoire, it is also what makes the notion unsuitable for the work that many readers want and expect it to do, namely, to provide a grounding for ethics in the usual sense.

Keywords: Levinas, face, normative ethics, phenomenology, idea of infinity

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.