The phenomenology of the social world
Husserl on Mitsein as Ineinandersein and Füreinandersein
In this paper I discuss Edmund Husserl’s phenomenological account of the constitution of the social world, in relation to some phenomenological contributions to the constitution of sociality found in Husserl’s students and followers, including Heidegger, Gurwitsch, Walther, Otaka, and Schutz. Heidegger is often seen as being the first to highlight explicitly human existence as Mitsein and In-der-Welt-Sein, but it is now clear from the Husserliana publications that, in his private research manuscripts especially during his Freiburg years, Husserl employs many of the terms associated with Heidegger, e.g. Mitwelt, Weltlichkeit, Alltäglichkeit, Zeitlichkeit, and Geschichtlichkeit, and had detailed discussions of various forms of social constitution. It is clear that Husserl and Heidegger were exploring these themes in dialogue with one another, and that Husserl, in fact, has a rich phenomenology of sociality that is worth exploring in its own right. In this paper, I will outline some of the key aspects of Husserl’s contribution.
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