The Husserlian phenomenology of consciousness and cognitive science: we can see the path but nobody is on it

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Commentary on ‘The View from Within’, edited by Francisco Varela and Jonathan Shear (includes response from Francisco Varela)

This response chooses as the sole topic for its concern the central question ‘how can Husserl's approach to consciousness be used to inform cognitive science?’ This paper is a response to the papers on phenomenology, in particular the one by Varela. The response makes brief comments on Husserl's phenomenology and the breadth of cognitive science is alluded to as well as its wide spectrum of phenomena. The authors are agreed that there could be a Husserlian cognitive science, but it would take some compromises from both traditions. In general we find that there is some good neuroscience in Varela's approach, but he mixes the contradictory perspectives of natural science and Husserl's phenomenology without explaining or mentioning the major problems which could be entailed by this.

Document Type: Review Article

Affiliations: School of Health Sciences, University of Wolverhampton, 62-68 Lichfield Street, Wolverhampton WV1 1DJ, UK.

Publication date: January 1, 1999

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