anti-structuralism: Oh, I think I have been used to phenomenological thinking

I guess the most educational part for me in this class is the phenomenological perspective. I have to confess that I was not a very understanding person before. I often got caught in arguments with other people. When other people didn’t think the same way as I thought, my instinct was to take his view as wrong. So I was likely to declare my point in a strong and absolute way. The effect is opposite. Other people tended to take that as arrogance and they’re emotionally inclined to disagree with that kind of declaration.

After the phenomenology classes during the last several weeks, I found it easier for me to understand other people than before. When my view conflicts with them, I know it’s probably because we came from different lifeworld and we have different horizon. It’s also possible that they know something which I don’t know. So I start learning to be modest, and trying to think from their horizon before making any judgement. I am also keeping “I might be wrong” in mind and trying to avoid making any absolute declaration. I feel if your idea is really correct, there gotta be a way to persuade other people.

However, structuralism came last week. But I feel like I am still thinking in a phenomenological way. For the fashion clothes Jeff showed on Thursday, I asked “what if we don’t know it is designed by Vivienne Westwood? We won’t still interpret it correctly.” I take it as a phenomenological question, as it considers people’s knowledge as part of the source where meaning comes from. Jeff said “Vivienne Westwood” was just activating the interpreter of that code in our mind. But people like me didn’t have that interpreter of “Vivenne Westwood” before, so is it saying people’s former knowledge do affect the interpreting?

OK, so that’s where I am right now. I will try to restrain the phenomenological thinking part in my head, and dive into the structuralism in the next few weeks.

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