Res Philosophica 94 (1):67-93 (2017)
AbstractSome experiences change who we are in ways we cannot understand until we have that very experience. In this paper I argue that so-called “transformative experiences” can not only bring about new understanding, but can actually be brought out by the gain of understanding itself. Coming to understand something new can change you. I argue that not only is understanding acquisition potentially a kind of transformative experience; given some of the recent philosophy of the phenomenology of understanding, it is a kind that is potentially rare in not being dependent on a particular subjective phenomenology. The goal of this paper threefold. First, I argue that coming to gain cognitive understanding of an academic subject matter can, under some circumstances, itself be a transformative experience. A second, subsidiary goal of this paper is to argue that such transformative understanding merits further study. Finally, I give a rough taxonomy of under what conditions we should expect understanding acquisition to be transformative.
Added to PP
Historical graph of downloads
References found in this work
No Understanding Without Explanation.Michael Strevens - 2013 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 44 (3):510-515.
The Value of Knowledge and the Pursuit of Understanding.Michael Huemer - 2004 - Mind 113 (452):763-766.
Is Understanding a Species of Knowledge?Stephen R. Grimm - 2006 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 57 (3):515-535.
Citations of this work
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Religious Experience, Voluntarist Reasons, and the Transformative Experience Puzzle.Rebecca Chan - 2016 - Res Philosophica 93 (1):269-287.
Précis of Transformative Experience.L. A. Paul - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 91 (3):760-765.
Transformative Experience: Are Real-World Experiences as Transformative as We Think?Janelle Shiozaki - unknown
Riding Into Transformative Learning.Jane Mathison & P. Tosey - 2008 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 15 (2):67-88.
Understanding and Coming to Understand.Michael Lynch - forthcoming - In Stephen Grimm (ed.), Making Sense of the World: New Essays on the Philosophy of Understanding. Oxford University Press.
Transformative Experience and Decision Theory.Richard Pettigrew - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 91 (3):766-774.
Expecting the Unexpected.Tom Dougherty, Sophie Horowitz & Paulina Sliwa - 2015 - Res Philosophica 92 (2):301-321.
What Can the ‘Transpersonal’ Contribute to Transformative Research?Joan Walton - 2014 - International Journal for Transformative Research 1 (1):25-44.
Partnership Formation for Change: Indicators for Transformative Potential in Cross Sector Social Partnerships. [REVIEW]Maria May Seitanidi, Dimitrios N. Koufopoulos & Paul Palmer - 2010 - Journal of Business Ethics 94 (1):139 - 161.
Theology or Therapy?: In What Sense Does Depression Exist?John Swinton - 2015 - Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology 22 (4):295-298.