Is It Too Late to Ask, “What Is Empathy?”

Is the person that is speaking relatively known or relatively unknown to us? 

  • Do we hear their words, or do we hear them (their person)?
  • As we listen, how do we determine if we hear or neglect their words?
  • As we listen, how do we determine if we hear or neglect their person?

As we listen, do we apprehend the transcendent?

  • Do their words obscure their person from us? Or do we hear their person?
  • To the extent we know them, are either their words or person obscured by our knowledge of them?
  • To the extent we know them, do we hear our projections instead of them and their words?

Is our history (personal or professional) in the way of hearing? 

  • Do we hear with quality?
  • Do we hear with coherence?
  • Are we hearing the person’s desired outcome instead of hearing their person?
  • Does our desired outcome for them obscure us from hearing their words? Or from hearing their person?
  • What theory, tradition, or discipline of theirs is in their way?
  • What theory, tradition, or discipline of ours is in our way?
  • Are we employing an objective arrangement instead of listening?
  • Are we hearing, or only following a narrative of words?

What is being said? 
What is the person saying?


Inspired by a fresh reading of:

Foucault, M.  (1969).  What Is An Author?  Lecture given at the Collège de France. 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s