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Leila Mazhari

on 14 March 2014

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Transcript of Phenomenology

What is phenomenology?
The study of everyday life, the common sense, the conscious experience

The study of reflexive experience as it takes form in consciousness

Phenomenologists seek to understand how individuals construct, in their own consciousness, the meaning of things

phainómenon "that which appears" and lógos "study"
By: Rasheena Sekhon, Kelsey Hayre, and Leila Mazhari

April 13, 1899 - May 20, 1959
Alfred Schütz
Peter L. Berger
Thomas Luckmann
Austrian-born American sociologist
Emigrated from Austria shortly after WWII
Best known for his work with Thomas Luckmann - their main thesis being that human beings construct a shared social reality
Strong interest in religion
Most famous work: The Social Construction of Reality
March 17, 1929 (84 years young)
Austrian social scientist
Bridged sociological and phenomenological traditions
Originally worked as an international lawyer
Later taught sociology and philosophy
Most of his work was written while he was working full-time at a bank
His wife assisted him by transcribing his work
October 14, 1927 (86 years young)
American-Austrian sociologist
Studied philosophy and linguistics in Austria
Moved to the United States after WWII to continue his studies in New York
from Greek:
Has worked as a sociology professor at the University of Constance in Germany
From 1994 onwards, has been serving as a professor emeritus
"emeritus" = having retired but allowed to retain their title as an honor
Realities from daily life to theoretical contemplation
the main realities &
their constitution
the worlds of imaginaries
1. The World of Daily Life
2. The Natural Attitude and It's Epoche
3. The Performance of Spontaneity
4. The Tensions of Consciousness and the Attention of Life
5. The Time-Perspectives of the Ego Agens and Their Unification
6. The Social Structure of the World of the Working Self
7. The Strata of Reality in the Everyday World of Working
8. The World of Working as Paramount Reality

(both heavily influenced by Schutz)
Social construction of reality
Foundation of reality is in the knowledge that guides conduct in everyday life
Externalization, Objectification, & Internalization
EXTERNALIZATION: actors create their social worlds by their own human activity
OBJECTIFICATION: the actor views the everyday life-world as an ordered reality with phenomena pre-arranged in patterns that are independent of the actor
INTERNALIZATION: socialization (the actor internalizes norms & values as "givens")
The reality of everyday life
Different objects = different spheres of reality
consciousness goes through spheres of reality
things appear different to the conscious, so we attend to them differently
Transferring from one reality to another = "experience shock"
Language used in everyday life provides subject with necessary objectifications and posits the order to make sense of things
The reality of everyday life
"Here & now": presented as realissimum of consciousness
reality of life embrace phenomena that aren't present "here and now"
Not alone in everyday life reality = "real to others" through interacting and communicating with others
Share common sense about reality = share common knowledge
Language ensures everyday life retains even with shifts
Social interactions in everyday life
Understand experiences through social interaction
Social interactions makes the "other" fully real (this reality part of everyday life)
When an attitude is directly expressed: gain access to anothers subjectivity
Human production of signs = crucial to objectification
LANGUAGE is the most important sign in society
hearing what we say makes it seem more real
it typifies experiences - we categorize what is meaningful to ourselves and others
Basic Concepts and Methods of the Social Sciences
THESIS: the objective meaning of the action of others (deduced from its external course and effects) are NOT identical with the subjective meaning (as revealed in motivational understanding)

- the motivational context of one’s own acting is never “closed”
- we cannot speak simply of human action as if it were self-evident that reveals itself to an observer as an “obvious unit”
- no two persons will have identical experiences: depends on context
what distinguishes scientific thinking from thinking in daily life?

scientific thinking is clear and distinct thinking
but do we not think clearly and distinctly in daily life?
we only think clearly and distinctly to the degree necessary for any given situation/circumstance
The first objective of the social sciences has to be the maximal clarification and explanation of what, in general, persons living in the social world think about this world.
Certain social phenomenon appear objective to us – they do not require us to reflect back beyond taking notice of the external processes (become “standardized” and “normed” by law and usage)
Label (typology) applied to other affects interaction with other
Social structure is an essential element of the reality of everyday life
the reality of everyday life
( Schutz, Berger & Luckmann )
Language allows for the subject to speak about matters that aren't present in a face-to-face situation, including those that they haven't experienced
Basic assumptions that make us consider this world as a real world:
1) mind of awakeness
2) epoch
3) working
4) a specific time perspective
5) a specific form of sociality
6) a specific concept of the experiencing self
People are able to imagine themselves acting & working
Imagining self cannot transform the outer world
The factual experiences of everyday life do not hold
Logical consistencies do hold
State of complete relaxation
There are small perceptions that remain in a state of confusion
determines the interests & ideas of the dreamer
Does not act or work - is without purpose
Dreaming is lonely (not common to all of us)
"Which is that a scientist turns back from his theoretical attitude to the natural one in order to communicate as a human being with his fellow men.”
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