- I hope that my title, “The Metaphysics of Everyday Life,” brings to mind the title of the lively little book, The Psychopathology1 of Everyday Life, which Sigmund Freud published in 1904. Although scientifically obsolete, this small volume describes numerous kinds of familiar phenomena that go unnoticed: Forgetting proper names; forgetting foreign words; making mistakes in reading and writing; concealing memories from childhood; mislaying things, and so on. These banal errors appear to be random but, according to Freud, they are bursting with psychological importance.
- What I find congenial in Freud is not his diagnosis of these little mistakes, but his finding consequence in occurrences that are usually overlooked as haphazard and purposeless. Whereas Freud saw the psychological significance of ordinary mistakes, I want to show the ontological significance of ordinary things that we encounter in everyday life.
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