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A Solution to the ‘paradoxical’ Relation between Lifeworld and Science in Husserl

Theodorou, Panos

Phänomenologische Forschungen, Bd. 2010 (2010), Iss. 0: S. 143–165

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Theodorou, Panos


In this paper I deal with the problem of how Husserl can coherently claim that life-world is both (1) the founding presupposition of science and (2) a whole that has science as its part. The approach suggested here is based on Husserl’s ideas regarding multi-layered transcendental intentional constitution of correlative noemata. In our intentional correlations we experience objectities in their appropriate horizons of co-givenness. Both the objectities and their horizons are multi-layered structures containing a core of primordial, perceptual, pre-thematic givenness and a series of historically, thematically, and scientifically established noematic sediments. Nevertheless, we directly experience the at-each-time actual or active constitutive layer. In its constitution, however, the latter comprises also the underlying founding noematic layers that make what is directly given possible. “Life-world”, then, means two things: (a) the totality of the actual and possible horizon- and object-givenness, and (b) the core of it, i.e., the prethematic, simple perceptual, object- and horizon-givenness – with the latter only experienceable via the currently prevalent level of the former. Sense (b) supports Husserl’s claim (1); sense (a) supports his claim (2).


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Panos Theodorou: A Solution to the ‘paradoxical’ Relation between Lifeworld and Science in Husserl 1