Studying the Intentionality of Human Being

Through the Elementary Meaning of Lived Experience

In: Journal of Phenomenological Psychology
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  • 1 Assistant Professor, Department of Communication and Psychology, Aalborg University, Denmark
  • | 2 Associate Professor, Department of Public Health, Section for Nursing, Aarhus University, Denmark
  • | 3 Associate Professor, Department of Learning and Philosophy, Aalborg University, Denmark

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Abstract

Based upon a brief outline of existential-phenomenological ontology we present a theoretical and practical understanding of human being, which is suited for a methodologically reflected approach to qualitative research. We present the phenomenological distinction between three dimensions of corporeal intentionality (structural, generative and dialectic intentionality) that form elementary events and structures of meaning. Various aspects of human being are better scrutinized with these concepts of intentionality, such as the association of individual being or collective being (e.g. groups) with the less differentiated anonymity of human being. The aim of our framework is to support the qualitative researcher in grasping the experience of the human life in closer accord with how this being actually unfolds and is lived. Application of the presented framework is illuminated with empirical examples from educational, health and psychological contexts. Finally, we discuss the methodological implications that our approach has for qualitative investigations of human being.

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