Mind, Body, and Mental Illness

This paper is a critical review of Antonio R. Damasio's recent book Descartes' Error. It is argued that although the book succeeds in showing how the emotions play a necessary role in reasoning processes, it fails in its attempt to shed new light on the mind-brain problem. It is further argued that this last failure could perhaps have been avoided if Damasio had allowed the philosophy of the French phenomenologist Maurice Merleau-Ponty to inform his own thinking.