The Anatomy of Indifference and Care project

Principal Investigator

Deanne Bell (Department of Psychology, Nottingham Trent University, United Kingdom)

 

Contact

Deanne Bell <Deanne.bell@ntu.ac.uk>

 
Funding

Nottingham Trent University

Status

Ongoing

 

Summary

Seventy years ago forty-eight countries adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). The UDHR marked an international commitment to end discrimination against people based on their race and ethnicity, practices that have produced social suffering globally. Despite this intention, human rights failures persist. In 2015, an evaluation of equality and human rights by 175 civil society organizations in the UK, for example, found that ethnic minorities’ experiences of health, education, income, employment, justice and safety lag behind white UK citizens and evidence social suffering as a result.

Why and how do we remain indifferent to others’ pain despite our stated intention to do otherwise?

The Anatomy of Indifference and Care research project explores people’s relationship to the suffering caused by social inequalities and social injustice. Its main purpose is to find out much more than is currently known about indifference and care in light of social suffering. The project is designed to learn more about psychological moments when we are being indifferent and when we are caring toward others who are socially disadvantaged.

Because indifference and care are experienced in the Global North and South participation is open regardless of where you live.

No study has been conducted like this despite potential benefits to civil society if we understand these phenomena more deeply.

Publications

Forthcoming

 

Updated on 6/11/2019

Tracing time

The experiential processes triggered by duration estimation and time passage perception tasks

Participants

Katrin Heimann (Aarhus University)

Federica Cavaletti (Catholic University of Milano)

 

Contact

Katrin Heimann <katrinheimann@cas.au.dk>

 
Funding

Interacting Minds Center, Aarhus

Status

Ongoing

 

Summary

ln the field of cognitive psychology, subjective time perception is often assessed by employing two main types of temporal tasks: duration estimation (DE – the quantitative estimation of the length of a time interval in conventional units) and time passage perception (TPP - the qualitative impression of the speed of the temporal flow). Though the two types of tasks are frequently used interchangeably, a rigorous theoretical reflection about what they precisely assess and, relatedly, their supposed equivalence has been missing. Therefore, in order to improve the understanding of DE and TPP, we followed the precise design of a recent study of time perception in movie watching.

In the experiment, 12 participants were presented one short video-clip. Then, they were asked to express both a DE judgment (in seconds) and a TPP judgment (on a 9-point Likert scale). Lastly, they were interviewed, using MP, about the experience of performing this task. The process was then repeated, to also investigate experiential changes caused by the repetition of the setup (a common feature of psychological assessments). The pilot results will be presented on the conference "First Person Science of Consciousness" in Witten-Herdecke, Germany, May 2019. 

 

Updated on 4/4/2019

Climateers: From old habits to a sustainable future

Participants

Katrin Heimann (Aarhus University)

Andreas Lloyd (Community Organizer, Copenhagen)

 
Contact

Katrin Heimann <katrinheimann@cas.au.dk>

 
Funding

Interacting Minds Center, Aarhus

Status

Ongoing

 

Summary

This project focuses on the majority of citizens who do have the necessary resources to understand the consequences of climate change; who are aware of their own responsibility in this situation; but who, even so, refrain from consistent behavior change and/or from taking any systematic social or political action and advocacy. Based on existing psychological research and a first pilot study conducted within the IMC, it is our  hypothesis that the key to understanding this inaction lies in the – underexplored - complexity of subjective experience. In the very moments where individuals live through affection and care they also encounter conflicting feelings and thoughts such competing desires and values, feelings of disorientation and mightlessness etc. 

As a result of this cognitive conflict individuals might try to actively distract themselves from the issue of climate change, in the long term, they might develop a pathological numbness regarding or neglect/denial of climate change in general.

It is the goal of this project to develop a workshop format that addresses the challenges hypothesized above in order to help political and educational organizations across the world to support citizens in taking their first steps from passive concern to climate action. Crucially, these workshops will integrate MP to gain first empirical insight into the precise experiential processes at stake to

1)   re-test and further explore the hypotheses made by developing a generic model of the experiences addressed,

2)   track such experiences over the course of the workshop to investigate the effect of the interventions,

3)   feed the research results back into the workshop design process to continually improve the workshop format as well as

4)   provide documentation of process and results to allow for wider dissemination of knowledge as well as adoption of the approach

Updated on 4/4/2019

Playful interactions

Participants

Katrin Heimann (Aarhus University, Denmark)

Reed Stevens (Northwestern University, US)

Contact

Katrin Heimann <katrinheimann@cas.au.dk>

 
Funding

Interacting Minds Center (Aarhus), project PLAYTrack

Status

Ongoing

 

Summary

What does it mean to playfully interact? This study combines Micro-phenomenological Interviews of two participants having been given the task to playfully build LEGO together, with the Interaction analysis of this interaction AND the Interaction analysis of the interview to gain insights into the circumstances and process of getting playful.

Updated on 4/4/2019

The minimal phenomenal experience. The case of lucid dreamless sleep.

Experiences of awareness during sleep.

Participants

Adriana Alcaraz Sánchez, MPhil student (CSPE, University of Glasgow)

 

Contact

Adriana Alcaraz Sánchez: a.alcaraz-sanchez.1@research.gla.ac.uk

Financement

Auto-financement

Statut

En cours

 

Résumé

Lucid dreamless sleep experiences have been described as mental experiences happening during sleep that cannot be categorised as dreams. The reason for this is that lucid dreamless sleep lacks the feeling of being in a simulative world, characteristic of dreams. Some philosophers, drawing from Indian Philosophical traditions, have suggested that lucid dreamless sleep should be regarded as the experience of being alive, the experience of ‘nowness’ or the experience of alertness.

This project aims at studying awareness during sleep by describing the associated phenomena that appear in the different stages of this process. For that purpose, a qualitative study will be carried out with the use of micro-phenomenological interviews.

We are currently looking for individuals that would like to participate in the study. Our targeted audience are individuals that recall episodes of awareness during sleep in the absence of dreams and that are willing to share their experiences in a 1:1 interview.

Please, follow the link below for more information about the Call for Participants.

 

Mis à jour le 10/9/2018

The Phenomenology of Occurrent, Conscious Thinking

Participants

Fergus Anderson, PhD student, Alanus University (Germany)

Contact

Fergus.Anderson@alanus.edu

Funding

Funded PhD research

 

Status

Completed. Thesis defended in January 2018.

 

Summary

In this research, I address a question drawn from the contemporary field of cognitive phenomenology, which is whether there is a specific “non-sensory” kind of phenomenology associated with cognitive states such as judging, deciding, understanding etc. This specific kind of cognitive phenomenology is said to constitute cognitive states in a way that is comparable to the way that sensory phenomenology constitutes sensory states, but there is disagreement about what it is and whether it exists at all. In this research I take a first-person approach to this question rather than the more common “analytic” approach. I primarily use auto-elicitation, and also microphenomenological interviews which focus on specific kinds of provoked thinking experiences. Out of this I put forward a thesis regarding what I call the “dynamic” phenomenology of thinking, which I argue is an important but neglected aspect of cognitive phenomenology.  

 

Publication

Anderson F. The Dynamic Phenomenology of Occurrent Thinking. Phenomenology and Mind. (forthcoming).

Updated on 1/12/2016

Writers block revisited

A micro-phenomenological case study on how an impeding internalized voice is related to writer’s block

Participants

Eva Bojner Horwitz, Education director, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Uppsala University, Center for social sustainability, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society Karolinska Institute, and Department of Clinical Neuroscience Karolinska Institute, Sweden

Walter Osika, Center for social sustainability, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society, Karolinska Institute and Department of Clinical Neuroscience Karolinska Institute Sweden

Cecilia Stenfors, Department of Psychology, University of Chicago, and Karolinska Institute, Sweden.

Contact

Eva Bojner Horwitz: eva.bojner.horwitz@ki.se

Funding

Riddargårdskliniken, Sweden

 

Status

Ongoing

 

Summary

Procrastination, and more specific writers block, is common and can have a deleterious impact on individuals’ academic performance. This comparative study stems from a case with a master’s student with writer’s block, who was asked to perform body movements reflecting a thesis writing process over time. The micro-phenomenological interview method was used to uncover the student’s experience during the exercise, including bodily sensations, feelings, and thoughts, and particularly the very precise process related to an inner voice. The innnel voice was recorded with the student´s own voice and was the subject of analyses. The structure analysis shows in detail the process, i.e. how the student perceives very specific mental images, micro movements and sensations in relation to the specific “inner voice” experience. Specifically, it was discovered that the student´s inner voice was triggering different body movements and gestures and not the other way around.  The micro phenomenological method together with video interpretation applied on the first-person perspective can reveal very detailed bodily experiences, movements and sensations. These findings suggest that the power of non-verbal ways of learning by using movements may be applied in broader areas such as research writing.

 

Publication

Horwitz, E.B., Stenfords, C., Osika, W. (2018). Writer's block revisited: A Micro-Phenomenological Case Study on the Blocking Influence of an Internalized Voice. Journal of Consciousness Studies 25 (3-4): 9-28.

Mis à jour le 8/11/2018

Thésée

Théories et Explorations de la Subjectivité et de l’Expérience Explicitée

Participants

Magali Ollagnier-Beldame, Laboratoire ICAR UMR CNRS 5191, France

Christophe Coupe, Laboratoire DDL UMR CNRS 5596, France

Anne Cazemajou, Laboratoire ICAR UMR CNRS 5191, France

Contact
Magali Ollagnier-Beldame : mbeldame@gmail.com

Financement

LabEx Aslan, Université de Lyon

Fonds Recherche de l’ENS de Lyon

 
Statut 

En cours (depuis 2014)

 

Résumé

Le projet Thésée vise à comprendre comment des personnes qui entrent en contact pour la première fois vivent ce moment. Il a pour objectif de décrire les composantes du vécu qui accompagne la rencontre : vécu sensoriel, vécu émotionnel, vécu corporel et expérience de micro-actions cognitives (Vermersch, 1994/2004 ; Petitmengin, 2006). Pour cela, nous nous fondons sur une épistémologie en première personne (étude de la subjectivité) et sur une méthodologie en seconde personne (des introspections rétrospectives guidées) en utilisant l’entretien micro-phénoménologique. Notre matériau de travail consiste en des entretiens enregistrés puis transcrits, que nous analysons à la lumière de différentes problématiques, comme celles de la constitution d’une intersubjectivité, ou de la porosité des frontières entre soi et autrui.

Nous étudions deux types de rencontres : i) des rencontres « expérimentales » (provoquées) entre deux personnes et ii) des rencontres « écologiques » que les sujets ont fait dans le passé. Pour ce second type, nous étudions les premières rencontres soignants-soignés.

 

Publications

Ollagnier-Beldame, M. Coupé, C. (forthcoming). Meeting you for the first time: descriptive categories of an intersubjective experience. Constructivist Foundations – AHCI.

Ollagnier-Beldame, M. Cazemajou, A. (forthcoming). Intersubjectivity in First Encounters: Micro-phenomenology as a Way to Reach Lived Experience. The Humanistic Psychologist - Taylor & Francis.

Mis à jour le 8/11/2018

L'expérience auditive

Participants

Claire Petitmengin (Institut Mines-Télécom - Télécom EM et Ecole Polytechnique - CREA), Michel Bitbol (CNRS), Jean-Michel Nissou, Bernard Pachoud, Hélène Curallucci, Michel Cermolacce et Jean Vion-Dury (Unité de Neurophysiologie et Psychophysiologie, Pôle de Psychiatrie Universitaire, Hôpital Sainte Marguerite, Marseille)

 

Contact

Claire Petitmengin : cp@clairepetitmengin.fr

 
Financement

Cognisud, France

 

Statut 

terminé en 2009

 

Résumé

Dans notre culture occidentale, c'est la vue qui est considérée comme le plus noble des sens, et l'essentiel de notre compréhension de la connaissance est  basée sur le modèle visuel. Lorsque le son est étudié, il l'est d'un point de vue physique ou psycho-acoustique, mais rarement d'un point de vue philosophique, encore plus rarement en tant qu'expérience vécue. La présente étude porte sur l'expérience associée à l'écoute d'un son. Son but n'est pas d'essayer d'isoler le sens de l'ouïe des autres modalités sensorielles, mais de décrire ce que nous vivons, dans notre expérience toute entière, lorsque se produit un son. Après avoir recueilli un ensemble de descriptions micro-phénoménologiques d'expériences auditives, nous avons analysé ces descriptions. Ce travail nous a permis d’identifier une structure générique à trois dimensions de l'expérience auditive, selon que l’attention du sujet se porte 1) sur l’événement qui est à la source du son, 2) sur le son en tant que tel, considéré indépendamment de sa source, 3) sur le ressenti corporel du son. Cette étude débouche sur l'hypothèse que cette structure tridimensionnelle se retrouve dans les autres modalités sensorielles.  

 

Publication

Petitmengin C., Bitbol M., Nissou JM, Pachoud B., Curalucci H., Cermolacce C., Vion-Dury J. (2009). Listening from Within. Journal of Consciousness Studies 16 (10-12), 252-284.

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