It Is A Philosophical Approach That Seeks To Understand The Experiences Of Individuals In A Non-Judgmental Way. This Approach Aims To Describe The Experiences Of Individuals In A Detailed And Accurate Manner, Without Making Any Assumptions About The Nature Of Reality. It Is A Form Of Philosophical Inquiry That Focuses On The Experience Of The Individual, Rather Than On Established Theories Or Ideas.

Phenomenology (psychology)

For other uses, see Phenomenology (disambiguation).

Phenomenology inside of psychologyor phenomenological psychology, is the psychological study of subjective experience. It is an approach to the psychological subject that tries to explain the experiences from the subject’s point of view through the analysis of his written or spoken word. The approach has its roots in phenomenological philosophical work in Edmundo Husserl.

history of phenomenology

Phenomenologists like Husserl, Jean-Paul Sartreand Maurice Merleau-Ponty conducted philosophical investigations of consciousness in the early 20th century. Your reviews of psychologism and positivism later influenced at least two major fields of contemporary psychology: the phenomenological psychological approach to Duquesne School (The descriptive phenomenological method in psychology), Including Amedeo Giorgi and Frederick Wertz; and experimental approaches associated with Francisco Varela, Shaun Gallagher, Evan Thompsonand others (embodied mind thesis). Other names associated with the movement include Jonathan Smith (interpretive phenomenological analysis), Steinar Kvaleand Wolfgang Kohler. But “an even stronger influence on psychopathology came from Heidegger (1963), particularly through Kunz (1931), Blankenburg (1971), Tellenbach (1983), binswanger (1994), and others.” Phenomenological psychologists have also figured prominently in the history of humanistic psychology movement.

phenomenological experience

The subject of experience can be considered the person or self, for convenience purposes. At the phenomenological philosophy (and in particular in the work of Husserl, Heidegger, and Merleau-Ponty), “experience” is a considerably more complex concept than is normally considered in everyday usage. Rather, experience (or being, or existence itself) is a phenomenon “in relation to” and is defined by qualities of direction, embodiment, and worldliness, which are evoked by the term “being-in-the-world“.

The quality or nature of a given experience is often referred to by the term qualia, whose archetypal exemplar is “redness”. For example, we might ask, “Is my experience of redness the same as yours?” Although it is difficult to answer this question concretely, the concept of intersubjectivity it is often used as a mechanism for understanding how it is that humans are able to empathize with each other’s experiences and actually engage in meaningful communication about them. The phenomenological formulation of “Being-in-the-World”, where person and world are mutually constitutive, is central here.

The observer, or in some cases the interviewer, achieves this sense of understanding and feeling related to the subject’s experience through subjective analysis of the experience and the implicit thoughts and emotions they convey in their words.

Difficulties in considering subjective phenomena

Prevailing philosophical psychology before the end of the 19th century relied heavily on insight. Speculations about the mind based on these observations were criticized by early advocates of a more scientific and objective approach to psychology, such as William James and the behaviorists Edward Thorndike, clark hull, John B. Watsonand BF Skinner. However, not everyone agrees that introspection is inherently problematic, as Francisco Varelawho trained experimental participants in the structured “introspection” of phenomenological reduction.

In the early 1970s, Amedeo Giorgi applied phenomenological theory to the development of the Descriptive Phenomenological Method in Psychology. He sought to overcome certain problems that he noticed in his work in psychophysics, approaching subjective phenomena from the traditional hypothetical-deductive framework of the natural sciences. Giorgi hoped to use what he had learned from his background in the natural sciences to develop a rigorous qualitative research method. His aim was to ensure that phenomenological research was reliable and valid and he did this by seeking to make his processes increasingly measurable.

Philosophers have long confronted the problem of “qualia“. Few philosophers believe that it is possible to be sure that a person’s life experience of an object’s “redness” is the same as someone else’s, even if both people had effectively identical genetic and experiential histories. In principle, the same difficulty arises in feelings (the subjective experience of emotion), the experience of effort, and especially the “meaning” of concepts. As a result, many qualitative psychologists have asserted that phenomenological inquiry is essentially a matter of “meaning making” and therefore an issue to be addressed by interpretive approaches.

Psychotherapy and the phenomenology of emotion

Carl Rogersin person-centered psychotherapy The theory is directly based on Combs and Snygg’s “phenomenal field” theory of personality. This theory, in turn, was based on phenomenological thinking. Rogers attempts to bring a therapist into closer contact with a person by listening to the person’s account of recent subjective experiences, especially emotions of which the person is not fully aware. For example, in relationships, the issue at hand is usually not based on what actually happened, but rather on the perceptions and feelings of each individual in the relationship. “At the heart of phenomenology is the attempt to describe and understand phenomena such as care, healing and wholeness as experienced by individuals who have experienced them”.

Recent research on and use of phenomenology

The study and practice of phenomenology continues to grow and develop today. In 2021, a study was carried out on the experiences of individuals who attended a community center (CECO) through phenomenological interviews to understand the lives of participants. After the interviews, the researchers constructed a comprehensive narrative, putting into their own words their understanding of the participants’ experience. This process led the researchers to understand that “the CECO is a space conducive to the development of individual and collective potential and the appreciation of constructive social relationships that facilitate and preserve people’s inherent tendency towards growth, autonomy and psychological maturation”.

Another example of phenomenology in recent years is a paper published in 2022 that explains how phenomenology can grow into a larger field of study if we recognize how phenomenology has the ability to make other people’s experiences clearer, bridging the gap between the subjective and the objective reality. It presents “a methodological concept of phenomenological elucidation to promote the development of phenomenology as psychology”.

Criticism of Phenomenology

In 2022, Gerhard Thonhauser published an article that criticizes phenomenology in psychology for adopting Le Bon’s theory crowd psychology, as well as what Thonhauser calls the “emotion transfer disease model”. Thonhauser claims that there is little or no evidence of the structure of Le Bon’s crowd psychology, on which the phenomenology is based.

In 2015, Michael Burgess wrote an article entitled Phenomenology is wrong. In the article, Burgess argues that “…the fundamental problem here is that consciousness is not a container for objects; this claim stems primarily from another: that the world itself looks being one way but being another, therefore in its initial state of “appearing to be” it cannot itself be real (this illusion is metaphysical).”

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