oa Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology - Teachers' experiences of enjoyment of work as a subtle atmosphere : an empirical lifeworld phenomenological analysis
The purpose of this paper is to show how teachers' experiences of one dimension of enjoyment of work, namely joy as a subtle atmosphere, can be described and understood from a lifeworld perspective. The lifeworld phenomenological approach contributes to the whole research design and provides the concepts that form the theoretical basis for the analysis. The specific lifeworld concepts used are 'intertwinement', 'natural attitude', 'pre-predicativity', 'intentionality' and 'intersubjectivity'. Using these concepts, the results illuminate and describe the meanings of enjoyment of work, based on what the teachers expressed in interviews. The empirical study consisted of interviews with five teachers working with pupils aged seven to nine years. The results illuminate some vital and fundamental characteristics of teachers' experiences of enjoyment of work and its significance. These characteristics include its basic function and its inherent possibility for opening up the whole classroom situation to the teachers. In this sense, enjoyment of work is similar to standing in a doorway and involves an expectant foreshadowing. The study also found that teachers' experiences of joy are intertwined with their experiences of flow and control. The results found that enjoyment of work was significant in the sense of the confirmation of good work, like a receipt. Finally, the results revealed new concepts and metaphors for a richer understanding of this phenomenon. The research implications of the study illustrate how the lifeworld approach enables a deeper understanding of emotional dimensions in teachers work. The approach provides useful concepts that broaden the understanding of the content, function and meaning of teachers' experiences of enjoyment of work. The paper also points to the need for more research in this area. The results illuminate new and different aspects of teachers' work that may be a valuable resource in this profession.
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