Philosophy Colloquium on Feminist Phenomenology

Posted on 11/3/2017 11:55:31 AM

The Philosophy Department is pleased to announce that Anthony Vincent Fernandez (Kent State University) will give a talk titled “Metaphysics and Method in Feminist Phenomenology” on Friday, November 10, at 3:30 p.m. in the Humanities and Social Science Building, room 209.


Phenomenologists study the universal structure of human experience, answering questions such as, “How do emotions shape the meaning and value of my environment?” and “How do I distinguish living subjects from inanimate objects?” Some contemporary philosophers—including feminist philosophers—have argued that phenomenology’s focus on the universal structure of experience bars it from saying anything about human particularity, such as racial identity and gender difference. Some feminist phenomenologists have, however, come to phenomenology’s defense, proposing phenomenological approaches capable of investigating both human universality and particularity.

In this paper, I consider one of the most promising approaches: Linda Fisher’s “generic” approach to human experience. I suggest that this approach lends itself to two possible interpretations, which I’ll call the “exemplar” and the “schematic” approaches. And I argue that the “schematic” approach provides the strongest foundation for phenomenological studies of race and gender.