phenomenon


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phenomenon,

an observable fact or event; in philosophy the definitions and uses of the term have varied. In the philosophy of AristotleAristotle
, 384–322 B.C., Greek philosopher, b. Stagira. He is sometimes called the Stagirite. Life

Aristotle's father, Nicomachus, was a noted physician. Aristotle studied (367–347 B.C.
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 phenomena were the objects of the senses (e.g., sights and sounds), as opposed to the real objects understood by the mind. Later, phenomena were considered the observed facts and were contrasted with the theories used to explain them. Modern philosophers have used "phenomenon" to designate what is apprehended before judgment is applied. For Immanuel KantKant, Immanuel
, 1724–1804, German metaphysician, one of the greatest figures in philosophy, b. Königsberg (now Kaliningrad, Russia). Early Life and Works
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 a phenomenon was the object of experience and was the opposite of a noumenonnoumenon
, in the philosophical system of Immanuel Kant, a "thing-in-itself"; it is opposed to phenomenon, the thing that appears to us. Noumena are the basic realities behind all sensory experience.
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, the thing-in-itself, to which Kant's categories did not apply.

Phenomenon

 

(1) An uncommon object or events; a rarity.

(2) A philosophical concept denoting an object or event that is perceivable by the senses. Aristotle used the term “phenomenon” to mean that which is apparent or illusory. G. W. von Leibniz, who defined phenomena as facts known through experience, distinguished a category of “real, well-established phenomena.” For G. Berkeley, D. Hume, and the advocates of positivism and Machism, phenomena are the data of consciousness—the empirical elements, in the subjective idealist sense—that constitute the only existing reality. According to I. Kant, a phenomenon is anything that can possibly be the object of experience; phenomena are juxtaposed to noumena, or “things in themselves.” In the phenomenology of E. Husserl, phenomena are directly given to consciousness as the contents of intentional acts.

V. F. ASMUS

phenomenon

Philosophy
a. the object of perception, experience, etc.
b. (in the writings of Kant) a thing as it appears and is interpreted in perception and reflection, as distinguished from its real nature as a thing-in-itself
References in classic literature ?
When we reflected that this was not a solitary phenomenon, never to happen again, but that it would happen forever and ever, an infinite number of evenings, and cheer and reassure the latest child that walked there, it was more glorious still.
But not being at that time in a disposition to philosophise upon this phenomenon, I rather chose to observe what course the island would take, because it seemed for awhile to stand still.
His sudden mad love for Sibyl Vane was a psychological phenomenon of no small interest.
She was unable to explain this phenomenon, which was not new to her, except by the intervention of the ghost.
The telephone current is a phenomenon of the ether, say the theorists.
It will appear, from the specimens which have been cited, that the American Confederacy, in this particular, stands discriminated from every other institution of a similar kind, and exhibits a new and unexampled phenomenon in the political world.
This moral phenomenon will not seem surprising to persons who know that the qualities of the heart are as distinct from those of the mind as the faculties of genius are from the nobility of soul.
The year 1866 was signalised by a remarkable incident, a mysterious and puzzling phenomenon, which doubtless no one has yet forgotten.
A burst of laughter from the auditors did not in the least disconcert the speaker, who continued, -- "Yes, gentlemen; Edward, the infant phenomenon, who is quite an adept in the art of killing.
So brilliant was the spectacle that few took notice of a singular phenomenon that had marked its entrance.
Captain Bonneville mentions another geological phenomenon north of Red River, where the surface of the earth, in considerable tracts of country, is covered with broad slabs of sandstone, having the form and position of grave-stones, and looking as if they had been forced up by some subterranean agitation.
Yet I noted, and was glad to note, evidence of a far deeper feeling than mere friendly regard, in her meeting with Arthur though this was, as I gathered, an almost daily occurrence--and the conversation between them, in which the Earl and I were only occasional sharers, had an ease and a spontaneity rarely met with except between very old friends: and, as I knew that they had not known each other for a longer period than the summer which was now rounding into autumn, I felt certain that 'Love,' and Love alone, could explain the phenomenon.