Definition of phenomenology

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    Dear all,

      hope to be fine! I have a question about phenomenology research. Which criteria caused we consider any concept as phenomenon? should it be an unusual or unordinary? for example can I consider “sense of belonging” as a phenomenon and why?

    also, I am looking a book to describe about phenomenology, how to analysis, how to write and how to report it. It would be great if you can help me.


    Hi Nahid,

    Phenomenology is the science of the essences of what an act of consciousness is about. The “what” is the place of which I have consciousness of belonging. The sense is the quality, the “how”, the mode I belong, the meaning of the place (for me). Doing phenomenology I should suspend all the knowledge about the place, the world surrounding, the theories about them, and describe what is the place and how is it like for me. This description brings whats and hows that should be investigated successively in some extend to reveal the sediment ways of meaning the world. Doing this you can clarify what are the individual meanings and put away social values the individual may refer in a non reflected way but do not belong to the individual.

    This is the Husserlian way (see Crisis), not easy. You may prefer other “phenomenology” as Heidegger or Merleau-Ponty, but I do not identify myself with them, so perhaps others may give you a contribution.


    Dear Gabriel,

    Thanks for your comment! it was very useful! honestly I had a discussion with one of qualitative experts about the phenomenology. The researcher believed the phenomenology should be related to an extraordinary concept in order to consider it as phenomenon. Indeed, the person believes the “sense of belonging” cannot considered as phenomenon since it is not extraordinary. I read in qualitative research dictionary that phenomenon can be related to any experience in every day life and my interpretation was that it shouldn’t be extraordinary. For example for me, the locus of control in daily life can be considered as phenomenon.

    I also have a question about what is the differences between “phenomenology” and “phenomenolography”? and what is their differences in findings report?

    all the best,



    Dear Nahid,

    I’m happy if I helped.
    Phenomenolography is a new concept for me. It seems (Wikipedia) to be a way of mapping the similarities and differences of meaning from different and subsequent experiences, sorting categories to achieve the essence of phenomenon through interpretation. This does not seem to be according Husserlian phenomenology, where each experience of the same object will complete or contradict the knowledge I previous made of it.
    About the “extraordinaryness” of the phenomenon, according to phenomenology, consciousness is a flux open to the world and that is phenomenon; when I give attention to my flux of consciousness, then I have an experience. For example, a perception, gets a partial content from the object or a state of affairs in a way that is mine (I am the subject), my way of meaning the object. So, I can qualify phenomenon as extraordinary, normal, happy, etc., from my point of view.
    My believe about my ability to control what happens (locus of control) it is a learned value. Somehow I learned it (rightly or wrongly). It can affect the way I plan my experience or the way I mean my experiences. I also can understand how I won that believe describing the whats and hows of my experience (intentional analysis)
    I hope this helps…

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