Being and enjoyment: from Descartes’ subject of cogito to Sade’s subject of imago

Keywords: Marquis de Sade, Descartes, enjoyment, pleasure, pain, body, soul


The article studies the enlightemently shift in the interpretation of enjoyment, which led to the construction of a particular ethos/nomos enjoyment and transformation in the model of being/thinking. Thus, constituted the transition from the metaphysics of mind, grounded by Descartes, to (meta)physic of body, presented by the Marquis de Sade. This shift or meta/physical gap is carried out at the intersection of two lines: the reason and enjoyment. Given line of reason, the article specifically actualized line of enjoyment, allowing to explore the transformation of the identity of being and thinking which is fundamental to Western philosophy. It sets the place of enjoyment in Cartesian concept of the identity of being and thinking, and the distinction of soul and body. It formulated on this bases the maxim the subject of the cogito: I enjoy it thinking being. Approach of Descartes is opposed by the materialistic definition of enjoyment and pleasure, designed Sade. This conceptualization of the enjoyment enables the transition to (meta)physic of body, which recognizes only bodily/physical being hypertrophicated by the imagination. According to this, it is concluded that the sadian subject imago constitutes maxim: only enjoying of being I am thinking.

Author Biography

Oleh Perepelytsia, V. N. Karazin Kharkiv National University
Doctor of Philosophical Sciences, professor of the Department of Theoretical and Practical Philosophy


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How to Cite
Perepelytsia, O. (2016). Being and enjoyment: from Descartes’ subject of cogito to Sade’s subject of imago. Sententiae, 35(2), 82-93.


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