Heterophenomenology – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Heterophenomenology – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  Posted with steam coming out my ears, but calming myself: so rather than the subject’s self-report of their experiences being validity enough both to allow and to agree the existence of whatever subjective experience is reported by the subject, in this view to be allowed and agreed the subject’s report of their experience requires ‘intersubjective validation by empirical means’, in other words, by other people’s reports of their subjective experiences of the empirical media that calibrate others’ experiences to theirs as the standard.

Thus: ‘For any phenomenological question “why do I experience X”, there is a corresponding heterophenomenological question “why does the subject say ‘I experience X’?”.  To quote Dennett, “The total set of details of heterophenomenology, plus all the data we can gather about concurrent events in the brains of subjects and in the surrounding environment, comprise the total data set for a theory of human consciousness. It leaves out no objective phenomena and no subjective phenomena of consciousness.”

While I can readily understand that reported experiences may not seem to tally with measurable body states (any partner or parent knows ‘I’m hungry/not hungry/tired/not tired’ as what have been called Freudian denials), and may also not seem to tally with their real experiences when these are examined free from normative constraints of various sorts on their experience of their experience, it seems to me that along with the ‘heterophenomenological’ question – “why does the subject say ‘I experience X’?” – there is a ‘homophenomenological’ question: – “why do I say ‘I and others experience X about the subject’s reported experience’ is more valid than the subject’s experience?”

This is to make what seem to me two important errors.  One is to deny one form of existence and experience its own validity as existential experience, which undermines experience of experience as experience, the experience being investigated here, missing important information on experience of experience. The other is to deny that form of existence and experience its own validity as experiential existence, which undermines experience of existence as existence, so reducing existence to only those experienced existences that are agreed, missing important information on existence as experience.  Perhaps most importantly, it franchises and farms out examination of existence and experience to ‘experts’.  This goes nowhere; all it produces is emerging middles for ‘expert experience’ to examine, as a sort of ‘rent-seeking’.  Animal Farm eat your heart out.

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About leaflittering

person thinking about life as a series of encounters between expectations and experiences, and applying ideas to ecology, ethics, epistemology, and education in various environments
This entry was posted in emergence, experience, Procrustes, theories and stories. Bookmark the permalink.

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