Monthly Archives: August 2014

2014.8.8 The Phenomenology of Childhood

I wrote this and posted it on the other blog for some reason. Now it’s here as well!

Deliver Daily

51cmaGy-w5L._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_In trying to understand what a small child needs to grow up mentally healthy, and what the parent does and does not do, I got the idea that the answer involves the phenomenology of being a small child. So I googled.

And I discovered this book by Eva Simms, The Child in the World: Embodiment, Time, and Language in Early Childhood (2008, Detroit: Wayne State University Press). Simms is a psychology professor at Duquesne University. In her book, she is talking about the experienced world of the child, using insights from the existential phenomenology of Heidegger and Merleau-Ponty. She also draws on Piaget’s descriptions of the child’s early experience of reality.

Human experience is embodied, nondualistic, and occurs in relationship to others. We experience, space, time, and things. We do it all with language. And we are all historical beings of a culture and a certain time period.
Coexistentiality, the…

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