Was there a sun before men existed?
Ayer, Sartre, Bataille, and Merleau-Ponty
"Georges Bataille, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, and Alfred Jules Ayer walk into a bar.' This may at first appear to be the opening line of a joke. But Georges Bataille records in his lecture "Les conséquences du non-savoir' (delivered on the day following the event in question) that a meeting between these three philosophers took place on 11 January, 1951, in a Parisian bar. This was preceded by a (hitherto unpublished) lecture presented by Ayer titled "The Idea of Truth and Contemporary Logic'. Among the audience of the lecture were Bataille himself, Merleau-Ponty, as well as the physicist Georges Ambrosino and the philosopher Jean Wahl.1 Bataille reports having met Ayer, presumably at the bar while having a drink following the lecture, and having sustained, through "reciprocal interest' (1986, p. 80), a conversation that continued until three o' clock in the morning. According to Bataille, Merleau-Ponty and Ambrosino had also taken part in the conversation.
Vrahimis, A. (2013). Was there a sun before men existed?: Ayer, Sartre, Bataille, and Merleau-Ponty, in Encounters between analytic and continental philosophy, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 87-109.
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