Babu Thaliath

Philosophy, New Delhi
Fellowship: 01.05.–30.09.2016



I was born on 23rd May 1966 at Bharananganam in India. I graduated from College of Engineering Trivandrum, University of Kerala with a degree in Civil Engineering in 1988, after which I studied German Philology and Philosophy at the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi (1992-1994). I continued my studies in Philosophy and Germanistik at the Albert-Ludwigs-University Freiburg from 1997 till 1999, followed by a doctoral research in the areas of Philosophy and Art History in Freiburg and Basel under the guidance of Prof. Klaus Jacobi and Prof. Gottfried Boehm. After completing my PhD in 2003, I pursued several post-doctoral research projects in the area of Early Modern History and Philosophy of Science at the Humboldt University Berlin and at the University of Cambridge. My mentors were Professor Dominik Perler (Berlin) and Prof. Hasok Chang (Cambridge). In August 2013, I was appointed as professor at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.


Fields of Research

  • Early Modern Philosophy
  • Epistemology
  • Aesthetics
  • Phänomenologie
  • History and Philosophy of Science
  • Philosophy of Mind
  • Theory of Perception
  • Late Medieval Scholastics
  • Intercultural and Transnational Communication Processes
  • Film Aesthetics


Project outline

The Phenomenology of Biographising:
The Constitution of memory and recollection in the process of biographical reconstruction


Biographies are reconstructions of a past life. Biographical as well as historiographical reconstruction of the past is premised on numerous referential facts from various sources, such as memories, written and printed text materials, media documentations, oral traditions, etc.. However, the narrative continuity of the past is hardly safeguarded by the abundance of such data and materials, as both biographies and cultural histories conceal gaps, discontinuities and missing chapters of the past. This would eventually necessitate a speculative reconstruction of the biographical and cultural past. Within the general framework of historiography, the proposed research project attempts to investigate the process of biographizing by means of philosophical – particularly phenomenological – premises, tools or methods. My primary and propaedeutic investigations will be based on certain fundamental philosophical notions that are related to the experiencing of time and its perceptual and historical retention in the process of memory and recollection. I will discuss them predominantly in the framework of phenomenological doctrines, namely the doctrine of the intentional inexistence of time-objects (Brentano, Husserl), of noetic and noematic constitution of the time-consciousness (Husserl) and its development into a historical narrative (Carr), as well as in the framework of the epistemological problem of referentiality and aporicity of time-experiences (Ricoeur). The research is based on a fundamental premise, that it is the noematic factor in the time-consciousness that initiates or effectuates the noetic processes of memory constitution and historical recollection (and not vice versa, as how it was generally conceived by Husserl and other phenomenologists). Subsequently, one of the main objectives of the research is to identify the noematic absence, which can reemerge in memory or can be suppressed in oblivion, ontologically as a potential being.


Publications (Selection)

  • Thaliath, B. (2016): Wissenschaft und Kontext in der frühen Neuzeit. Freiburg i. Br. Karl Alber Verlag. 384 pp.
  • Thaliath, B. (2016): Die Verkörperung der Sinnlichkeit. Würzburg. Verlag Königshausen & Neumann. 175pp.
  • Thaliath, B. (2010): Natur und Struktur der Kräfte. Würzburg. Verlag Königshausen & Neumann. 200pp.
  • Thaliath, B. (2005): Perspektivierung als Modalität der Symbolisierung. Erwin Panofskys Unternehmung zur Ausweitung und Präzisierung des Symbolisierungsprozesses in der Philosophie der symbolischen Formen von Ernst Cassirer (Dissertation). Würzburg. Verlag Königshausen & Neumann. 375pp.           
  • Thaliath, B. (1997).: Das Individuum – Die Tragik – Der Übergang. Kulturelle Stichworte, dargestellt am Beispiel der Konstellation: König Ludwig II., Richard Wagner, Friedrich Nietzsche (Mikrofiche-Ausg.). Marburg. Tectum Verlag.123 pp.
  • Thaliath, B. (2012): Nature of Gravitation. The Structural Intuition of Gravitation in the Framework of Early Modern Mechanical Philosophy. In: Philosophy Study, Vol. 2, No. 9, September 2012, 595-618.           
  • Thaliath, B. (2010): The Iconic Turn in Philosophy, In: Journal of Dharma 34, 2 (April-June 2009), Bangalore, Dharmaram Publications, 153-167. 
  • Thaliath, B. (2008): The Ontological Causation. In: Journal of Dharma 33, 1 (January-March 2008), Bangalore, Dharmaram Publications, 33-56.
  • Thaliath, B. (2012): On »Masks,« In: CETA Souvenir – 2012, Bangalore (online veröffentlicht in, URL:
  • Thaliath, B. (2005): Grenzlinien des Daseins : Das Bildmotiv bei Andrej Tarkowskij. Freiburg i. Br., FreiDok der Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg.
  • 21 pp. URL:
    (zunächst veröffentlicht im Jahr 1999 in Reader, Zeitschrift der Kunsthistorischen Fakultät der Universität Heidelberg).