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Gurwitsch, Aron (1901–73)

DOI: 10.4324/9780415249126-DD100-1
Version: v1,  Published online: 2015
Retrieved June 15, 2024, from

Article Summary

Aron Gurwitsch was a phenomenologist who produced important work on the structure of consciousness. He was concerned with how consciousness is organized, especially its invariant, formal structure. His main work, The Field of Consciousness (1964), argues that consciousness is always structured in a three-fold pattern: theme, thematic field and margin. The theme is the focus of attention, the thematic field is the relevant context and the margin contains items merely co-present with the theme and its thematic field. Gurwitsch applied his philosophy of organization to wide-ranging issues, including social encounters, logic, culture and critiques of psychology. Gurwitsch successfully integrated insights from Gestalt psychology and phenomenological philosophy to advance the problem of conscious organization in a way that neither discipline alone could achieve. His insights on attention and consciousness have become increasingly relevant for phenomenology and the cognitive sciences.

Citing this article:
Arvidson, Sven. Gurwitsch, Aron (1901–73), 2015, doi:10.4324/9780415249126-DD100-1. Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Taylor and Francis,
Copyright © 1998-2024 Routledge.

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