PHIL 337: Twentieth-Century Continental Thought: Phenomenology

PHIL 337-001: Cont Continent Thgt: Phenomen
(Fall 2017)

01:30 PM to 02:45 PM MW

Robinson A246

Section Information for Fall 2017

  • Fulfils the requirement for a course in the continental tradition for the Philosophy major

  Phenomenology is a leading approach in philosophy developed during the past one hundred years.  In this course, we will study steps developed by the philosopher who initiated this phenomenological way of doing philosophy, Edmund Husserl, for exploring the world’s appearance to us. 

“Phenomenon” (and “phenomenology”) come from the Greek for “appearing” or “appearance.”  This enables us to put aside habits and shortcuts used every day in negotiating our way in the world that nevertheless actually cover over or obscure how the world appears and result in our taking our world for granted.  

We will examine significant results of phenomenological practice such as the discovery and analysis of “lived space,” or habitation of space before we begin to think about and develop theories about space, the discovery of “lived time,” our lived sense of  “time” before we begin to think about time and develop theories about time, our sense of a “lived body,” which is to say, our sense of the body as we live it, in contrast to the body considered as an object, and how language is related to the way we inhabit what phenomenologists call our “life-world.”  

We will study contributions made by major break-through phenomenologists including Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger, Alfred Schutz. Jean-Paul Sartre, and Maurice Merleau-Ponty.  We will examine difficulties that came about in the course of the development of phenomenology and how phenomenologists have addressed those difficulties.  In addition, we will have an opportunity to look into the interaction of phenomenology with other fields of study including psychology and sociology. 


Course Information from the University Catalog

Credits: 3

Examines phenomenological way of doing philosophy, its findings in regard to the "life-world," questions of "first philosophy," and the subject matter of the social sciences, as well as critical difficulties in its development. Texts by Husserl, Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty, Sartre, Schutz, and Derrida. May not be repeated for credit.
Recommended Prerequisite: 3 credits of philosophy, or permission of instructor.
Schedule Type: Lecture
This course is graded on the Undergraduate Regular scale.

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