In Roberto Walton, Shigeru Taguchi & Roberto Rubio (eds.), Perception, Affectivity, and Volition in Husserl’s Phenomenology. Cham, Switzerland: Springer. pp. 77-94 (2017)

Sebastian Luft
Marquette University
In this chapter, I present some systematic thoughts on a phenomenology of attention. There are two angles from which I will approach this topic. For one, the phenomenon in question is quite important for Husserl, but his thoughts on the topic have not been known to the public until recently through a new volume of the Husserliana that presents the only analyses in Husserl’s entire oeuvre dealing with this phenomenon. As it turns out, attention, as located between passive perception and active, synthetic consciousness, plays a key role in genetic phenomenology and its attempt to work out the levels of consciousness from passivity to activity. Hence, one part of this paper has the intention of presenting some of Husserl’s thoughts on attention and the systematic role it plays in his phenomenology of constituting consciousness. Secondly, in order to further the systematic point of the phenomenon, I turn to Goethe’s reflections on the primal phenomenon that can, I believe, be brought to bear on attention. Indeed, the primal phenomenon as a phenomenon that immediately and forcefully seizes our attention Goethe once compares to “the most beautiful pearls” in a chain of related phenomena. Among the phenomena appearing to us, some “simply” have a special quality in that they beckon us to investigate them, very much in the way in which Husserl describes the manner in which some phenomena lure us to focus our attention on them. Finally, if it is the world which “chooses,” as it were, certain phenomena for us to be drawn into their meaningful contexts, this observation has serious consequences for phenomenology as transcendental idealism. I want to put it as a question: What does it mean for a theory of world-constitution through consciousness that the world is “designed” such that certain phenomena are privileged from within the world to leap out at us, enticing us to explore it? Does attention bring us before the limits of phenomenology as transcendental idealism?
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Buy the book Find it on
DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-55340-5_5
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 65,593
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Boredom with Husserl and Beyond.Janko Lozar - 2014 - Prolegomena 13 (1):107-121.
A Lexicon of Attention: From Cognitive Science to Phenomenology. [REVIEW]P. Sven Arvidson - 2003 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 2 (2):99-132.
Attention Between Phenomenology and Experimental Psychology.Pierre Vermersch - 2004 - Continental Philosophy Review 37 (1):45-81.
Folk, Theory, and Feeling: What Attention Is.L. Doughney - 2013 - Dissertation, La Trobe University
On the Problem of the World in Husserl's Phenomenology.Mikhail A. Belousov - 2016 - Russian Studies in Philosophy 54 (1):20-34.
Husserl's Assistants: Phenomenology Reconstituted.Gabriel R. Ricci - 2010 - History of European Ideas 36 (4):419-426.
The Subject of Attention.Carolyn Dicey Jennings - 2012 - Synthese 189 (3):535-554.
Husserl, Protention, and the Phenomenology of the Unexpected.Jack Blaiklock - 2017 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 25 (4):467-483.


Added to PP index

Total views
31 ( #357,358 of 2,462,067 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #448,768 of 2,462,067 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes