Social Theory Term Paper

Pages: 32 (8692 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 10  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Black Studies - Philosophy

However, answering what this means should also be done in a historical context. The seven widely accepted features of what is considered to be the phenomenological approach have already been noted above by Wilson (2002). Phenomenology, however, began in the various philosophical reflections of an individual named Edmund Husserl back in the 1890s in Germany (Embree, 1997). Because of this, phenomenology to over 100 years old.

It began to spread before the First World War and had already made its way to Russia, Japan, and Spain by that time (Embree, 1997). In addition to this, it moved out of philosophy to a certain extent and into the realm of psychiatry (Embree, 1997). In the 1920s it began to spread rapidly and moved to France, Australia, Hungary, the Netherlands, and Poland (Embree, 1997). From that it moved into the United States and was examined in the context of research on communicology, which was originally called symbolism (Embree, 1997). It was also found in research on music, education, and religion (Embree, 1997).

Buy full Download Microsoft Word File paper
for $19.77
Phenomenology continued to spread and in the 1930s it worked its way into Italy, Korea, Czechoslovakia, and Yugoslavia, as well as into research that dealt with literature, architecture, and theater (Embree, 1997). After the Second World War it spread farther into Scandinavia, Portugal, and South Africa, as well as into research that dealt with ethnicity, gender, politics, and film (Embree, 1997). During the 1960s and 1970s phenomenology worked its way into China, Canada, and India, and into various other areas of research such as psychology, law, geography, and dance (Embree, 1997).

Term Paper on Social Theory in the View Assignment

Continuing its spread in the 1980s and 1990s, it worked its way into Great Britain and was seen in research in pathology, medicine, ecology, and nursing (Embree, 1997). There have been four philosophical tendencies and various stages that have been seen in phenomenology and these are generally seen as being successively dominant, although they sometimes overlapped as well. Phenomenology, well-being over a century-old, is also seen as multidisciplinary and planetary as a movement (Embree, 1997).

There is an expanding agenda of various issues that are often related to phenomenology to some degree. Because it continues to be developed and because it has spread into many disciplines and across the entire planet, it is often seem to be the most significant of the philosophical movements within the 20th century.

Originally, the movement began with Husserl's work that dealt with an attack on psychologism. This psychologism was actually an attempt to take logic and absorb it into empirical psychology (Wilson, 2002). The work that dealt with this reflected not only an interest in logic but also in language, mathematics, and perception, as well as some various types of representations such as imagination, expectation, and memory (Wilson, 2002). It also dealt with howl various ideal objects could be made evident and could be known (Wilson, 2002). Because phenomenology is seen to be evidential, reflective, and descriptive to both the objects that are encountered and the encounters themselves, the original beginnings of phenomenology are sometimes seen as being what is called descriptive phenomenology (Wilson, 2002).

This is seen to be the trunk of the tree and there are four large limbs that come out from it as this particular tree has continued to grow. It is important to look at these four specific branches. The first branch is realistic phenomenology which helps to emphasize the search that is often made for the universal essence that is seen in various types of matter including to the actions, selves, and motives of humans (Wilson, 2002).

Because of this, individuals have added the philosophy of law to phenomenology and others have added value theory, ethics, religion, and philosophical anthropology (Wilson, 2002). Philosophy that deals with human sciences has also been added to the mix and recognized recently for work that has been done on gender, and realistic phenomenology also deals with architecture, aesthetics, literature, music, and film (Wilson, 2002). This particular branch of phenomenology flourished most strongly in the 1920's in Germany but it also continues strongly today (Wilson, 2002).

The second branch is constitutive phenomenology and extends the original work that was done to include natural sciences (Wilson, 2002). This is generally seen to devote itself to various reflections on the phenomenological method (Wilson, 2002). This generally involves the suspending of acceptance of the pre-given or assumed status of conscious life as being something that exists within the world and is therefore performed in order to ensure that there is an intuitive and objective grounding for not only the world but the positive sciences that are seen within it (Wilson, 2002). Utilizing this type of method takes constitutive phenomenology that is seen in the modern tradition and dates it back to the work of the philosopher Emmanuel Kant (Wilson, 2002).

The third branch, existential phenomenology was originally designed as a project that would look at an analysis of various human beings in dealing with a means of fundamental ontology (Wilson, 2002). Some of this type of phenomenology appeared in Japan in the work of individuals that was performed within the late 1920s (Wilson, 2002). However, much of this branch was a tradition that has continued to grow within France (Wilson, 2002). Much of this happened within the 1940s and 1950s (Wilson, 2002). It was chiefly concerned with various topics such as desire, finitude, conflict, action, oppression, and death (Wilson, 2002). Political theory and many of the problems that were seen with ethnicity, as well as old age and gender were also dealt with in this context (Wilson, 2002).

The fourth and final branch of phenomenology is hermeneutical phenomenology (Wilson, 2002). This deals with the idea of human existence as being interpretive (Wilson, 2002). Originally, this came about in 1931 and then reemerged around 1960. All of the same areas of interest are seen in this particular type of phenomenology but the methods that are utilized for interpretation are somewhat different (Wilson, 2002). This particular branch has also had a lot of influence on various types of human science (Wilson, 2002). The hermeneutical phenomenology seems to the most active within the United States as opposed to other countries during the 1970s and 1980s (Wilson, 2002).

When the Soviet Union collapsed and there was greater contact with Eastern Europe and many of the traditions of phenomenology that were seen over in those countries, phenomenology became more popular throughout the world (Embree, 1997). What type of a shape phenomenology will take in the future is somewhat difficult to determine. It is certain that work will continue in the four established branches of phenomenology but it is also possible that a planetary that fifth type of phenomenology is emerging as well (Embree, 1997).

Who Was Alfred Schutz?

At this point is important to look at who Alfred Schutz was. He attempted, more than any other individual that worked in phenomenology, to relate much of his thoughts to not only social sciences but the social world as well (Barber, 2002). He wrote books that supplied various philosophical foundations for others' ideas of sociology and also for economics (Barber, 2002). He was familiar with economics through many contacts that he had with various colleagues in an Austrian school (Barber, 2002). He fled from Hitler and found himself in the United States in 1939 (Barber, 2002).

After this he worked to develop his thought much further in relationships not only to the social sciences but to logical empiricism, American pragmatism, and other fields that he felt were important such as literature and music (Barber, 2002). The work that he did has been very influential on many new movements that have come about in sociological thought such as conversation analysis and ethnomethodology (Barber, 2002). He was born in 1899 in Vienna, Austria, and died in New York in 1959 (Barber, 2002).

During WWI he belonged to the artillery division in the Austrian army and served in Italy before he returned to Vienna to pursue his studies at the University (Barber, 2002). While there he studied business, law, and social science with many renowned figures of his time but his most significant educational experiences occurred as a member of a Viennese circle of intellectuals (Barber, 2002). In this interdisciplinary circle he made friends that he would keep throughout the 1930s and 1940's, and many of these individuals were political scientists and philosophers (Barber, 2002).

He pursued his academic interests heartily, and in 1927 was named an executive officer of a banking firm in Vienna that had business relations on an international level (Barber, 2002). He entered into a pattern that led other philosophers to see him as being a banker only by day and being a philosopher by night (Barber, 2002). Even from the beginning of his studies, he had been very interested in many other methodological writings of various philosophers, most notably Max Weber, as he had seen this individual lecture in Vienna during the summer of 1918 (Barber, 2002). Max Weber's… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

Two Ordering Options:

Which Option Should I Choose?
1.  Buy full paper (32 pages)Download Microsoft Word File

Download the perfectly formatted MS Word file!

- or -

2.  Write a NEW paper for me!✍🏻

We'll follow your exact instructions!
Chat with the writer 24/7.

Social Theory Term Paper

Social Theory the Wide Diversity of Human Term Paper

Applied Social Theory Economic Crisis Ethical Issue Perspective the Economy and Society Essay

Social Workers Are Often Viewed Assessment

Sociology - Theories Feminists and Social Theory Term Paper

View 200+ other related papers  >>

How to Cite "Social Theory" Term Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Social Theory.  (2005, May 12).  Retrieved September 26, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Social Theory."  12 May 2005.  Web.  26 September 2020. <>.

Chicago Style

"Social Theory."  May 12, 2005.  Accessed September 26, 2020.