What is phenomenology
What makes an experience conscious is a certain awareness one has of the experience while living through or performing it. As Husserl and others stressed, we are only vaguely aware of things in the margin or periphery of attention, and we are only implicitly aware of the wider horizon of things in the world around us.
It is analogous to the mathematical procedure of taking the absolute value of a certain number, e. But we do not experience them, in the sense of living through or performing them. We thereby turn our attention, in reflection, to the structure of our own conscious experience. If mental states and neural states are simply identical, in token or in type, where in our scientific theory of mind does the phenomenology occur—is it not simply replaced by neuroscience? Rather, we acquire a background of having lived through a given type of experience, and we look to our familiarity with that type of experience: hearing a song, seeing a sunset, thinking about love, intending to jump a hurdle. The Discipline of Phenomenology The discipline of phenomenology is defined by its domain of study, its methods, and its main results. Phenomenology would then study this complex of consciousness and correlated phenomena. According to Husserl the suspension of belief in what we ordinarily take for granted or infer by conjecture diminishes the power of what we customarily embrace as objective reality. However, we do not normally characterize an experience at the time we are performing it. Phenomenology is the study of structures of consciousness as experienced from the first-person point of view. Most of the books that Husserl himself published during his life were in essence programmatic introductions to phenomenology. Amidst his marginalization from the university milieu in Germany during the s, Husserl was invited to given lectures in Vienna and Prague in Thus, we characterize experiences of seeing, hearing, imagining, thinking, feeling i. And that is the heart of phenomenology.
First edition, —01; second edition, A prominent line of analysis holds that the phenomenal character of a mental activity consists in a certain form of awareness of that activity, an awareness that by definition renders it conscious. Phenomenology as we know it was launched by Edmund Husserl in his Logical Investigations — And that is the heart of phenomenology.
Since the s the cognitive sciences—from experimental studies of cognition to neuroscience—have tended toward a mix of materialism and functionalism.
Classical phenomenologists like Husserl and Merleau-Ponty surely assumed an expansive view of phenomenal consciousness. Zahavi, D.
Moving outward from phenomenological issues, Michel Foucault studied the genesis and meaning of social institutions, from prisons to insane asylums. And they were not alone.
Sartre continued the phenomenological appraisal of the meaning of the other, the fundamental social formation. But they constitute only a small portion of his vast writing. A study of structures of consciousness and meaning in a contemporary rendition of transcendental phenomenology, connecting with issues in analytic philosophy and its history. Neuroscience will be framed by evolutionary biology explaining how neural phenomena evolved and ultimately by basic physics explaining how biological phenomena are grounded in physical phenomena. In other words, when a reference is made to a thing's essence or idea, or when the constitution of an identical coherent thing is specified by describing what one "really" sees as being only these sides and aspects, these surfaces, it does not mean that the thing is only and exclusively what is described here: the ultimate goal of these reductions is to understand how these different aspects are constituted into the actual thing as experienced by the person experiencing it. This is the process in which previous experiences come to shape and condition others. The Husserl-Archives continue to be published in a critical edition called Husserliana and continue to be a major source of phenomenological research. And, at some level of description, neural activities implement computation. In , G. By shifting the center of gravity from consciousness psychology to existence ontology , Heidegger altered the subsequent direction of phenomenology. Recent theorists have proposed both. A brief sketch of their differences will capture both a crucial period in the history of phenomenology and a sense of the diversity of the field of phenomenology. Related Entries 1. On one account, phenomenology explicates the intentional or semantic force of ideal meanings, and propositional meanings are central to logical theory.
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