oa Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology - Can we experience nature in the lifeworld? An interrogation of Husserl's notion of lifeworld and its implication for environmental and educational thinking

Volume 8 Number sed-1
  • ISSN : 1445-7377



Given the tendency for the "lifeworld approach" to be adopted in the domain of environmental theory and education without critical examination of the key concept "lifeworld", this paper attempts to elucidate the ambiguity apparent in Husserl's development of the notion and the implications of this for teaching and learning about nature. The paper consists of three sections. The first section deals with the meaning and limitations of the current lifeworld approach to nature and the implications for environmental and educational thinking. In the second section, the confusion surrounding the concept of lifeworld is traced back to the later Husserl's philosophy. Exploring the meaning of lifeworld in Husserl's philosophy reveals that there may be two lifeworld orientations : one is explicit and objective in its emphasis on the shared and universal; the other is implicit and subjective in its emphasis on the idiosyncratically personal. The final section argues that the implicit and subjective orientation of lifeworld may be more tenable experientially, and as such more conducive to helping environmental and educational thinkers envisage an attentive and responsive approach to teaching and learning about nature.

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