What is Phenomenology?


Phenomenology was founded by Edmund Husserl in the 19th century, who, like Kant before him. He rejected the idea that objective reality exists independent of our perceptions of it. According to phenomenology, there are no meaningful objects or events in the world until we observe them; therefore, there can be no objective truths about what reality really looks like. While this philosophy may seem bizarre at first glance. It actually has very far-reaching implications on how we understand the world around us. And how we make decisions based on those observations.

Defining phenomenology

Phenomenology may seem like a foreign concept to people who are new to philosophy. But it is actually fairly easy to understand. First of all, phenomenology studies things that we experience through our senses. The things we touch, taste, smell, and see every day. It’s part of a larger branch of philosophy, ontology (the study of being). Its goal is to give us a more complete picture of what reality really is by breaking it down into concrete objects that we can experience on a daily basis. So, when you think about your sense experiences in terms of time, space, and shape. Phenomenologists encourage you to do just that. Think about them! Use your sense experience as a frame for experiencing reality itself.

Merleau-Ponty’s Definition of Phenomenology

 French philosopher Maurice Merleau-Ponty defines phenomenology as the attempt to return from transcendental subjectivity (recollection-based consciousness) toward a so-called naive or nonphilosophical consciousness. In other words, it’s an examination of what we understand about a thing after we have already defined it in terms of its component parts. It’s all about context. What experiences shape your perception and understanding, and whether or not you remain open to alternative viewpoints.

The Background Of Phenomenology

One of philosophy’s most controversial movements, phenomenology, is a topic of intense controversy ever since. The founder and most famous contributor to phenomenology is Edmund Husserl. He laid out his ideas in two major texts: Logical Investigations (1900-1901) and Ideas: General Introduction to Pure Phenomenology (1913).

A prolific writer, Husserl wrote on such diverse topics as mathematics, logic, economics, and more. But before he was a theorist of human experience and consciousness—phenomenology’s two primary concerns—Husserl was an accomplished mathematician. As a result of that background, Husserl often spoke the informal language. Rather than an everyday idiom when discussing human experience and consciousness.

What is phenomenological design?

The design process for phenomenological products can often seem strange and abstract. But at its core, it’s a relatively straightforward process. All you need to do is walk through your product from beginning to end and really think about what would be required of someone using it. What mental processes do they need to go through in order to interact with it?

How will they feel as they use it? And what emotional or intellectual responses might they have while doing so? These are all things you should take time to consider as you create your product because if there’s one thing that defines phenomenological products, it’s that they are designed based on an understanding of how users interact with them.

What is phenomenology in education?

The term phenomenology, in education, is used to refer to a movement toward recognition and understanding of personal experience as significant. In philosophy, phenomenology refers to making thought or experience primary as opposed to making reality primary. It’s been around for a long time, having begun with Edmund Husserl at the beginning of the last century. But it was Sartre who first popularized it in France during World War II and he borrowed from Husserl’s theories when developing his famous idea of existence precedes essence. In other words, we are free to choose our own destiny.

The Disciplinary Names For This Area Of Study

The discipline of phenomenology has a wide range of names depending on which field it’s being discussed. Philosophers and scientists refer to it as philosophy, while psychologists and neuroscientists call it psychology. For simplicity’s sake, we’ll stick with phenomenology for now. The term comes from combining two Greek words: photo, meaning to appear or be manifest; perceptible; perceive or experience directly, and remain, meaning to set in order; to describe systematically. That together makes up phenomenon — what we experience, how we perceive it, and how that perception changes us. Phenomenologists study these concepts and many more through various means.

The Process And Outcomes Of Phenomenological Research

The process of phenomenological research will depend largely on which school of thought you choose to follow. The two primary methods are called transcendental and descriptive. Transcendentalism focuses on how an individual perceives objects or events, whereas descriptive research describes and analyses phenomena that already exist in reality.

Though both methods have value, most researchers utilize a hybrid form of phenomenological inquiry: collecting data through interviews with individuals in their natural environment, transcribing that information, analyzing it for themes, and then developing answers to research questions. If you want to get a clear idea of what your final product should look like—in terms of structure and cohesiveness—it’s helpful to take a look at some existing studies in your field.

 Main Pillars of Phenomenological Theory

There are two main pillars of phenomenological theory, intentionality, and aboutness. Intentionality refers to how our consciousness relates to objects in reality. In simple terms, it’s one of our most basic means of understanding reality. To illustrate: if you reach for a pen on your desk, there are certain aspects of your understanding that you bring to bear on it; that’s an intentional activity. If you see an elephant crossing a road or hear a song or smell something familiar or look at an image for more than two seconds and so on, all these actions require intentionality —i.e., intention-driven activity—for us to perceive them correctly and complete them successfully.

Difference between case study and phenomenology

While both are first-person accounts of a single event or behavior, each has its own unique take on a singular subject. A case study primarily focuses on an individual’s experience and possible underlying causes, while phenomenology takes a broader approach by taking into account factors beyond simply an individual’s environment and circumstances. Case studies can be valuable in terms of gaining deeper insight into one person’s experience with a specific condition or disorder.

However, they may fail to generalize that experience to other individuals with similar disorders; for example, two people with autism will likely have different experiences growing up even if their cases share many characteristics. Researchers interested in larger populations might consider using phenomenological surveys—which aim to uncover common experiences—or qualitative research methods like interviews and focus groups.

Final verdict

Phenomenology refers to a philosophical study that focuses on understanding human consciousness and experience. It attempts to understand reality based upon how humans perceive it, not how it exists objectively. There are two major branches of phenomenological thought: First-generation (or descriptive) phenomenologists believe that our experience of an object or event can be used to fully understand its nature, with nothing being left out.

Second-generation (or interpretive) phenomenologists argue that an examination of pure experience must involve something more than direct perception alone; in fact, interpretation may be needed in order to grasp any meaning at all. This branch argues that we can never really see things as they are, and therefore we create assumptions about reality as a way to organize and make sense of our experiences.

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