Project to recover early psychology thinking receives grant
October 13, 2020
Congratulations to Dr. Antonio Calcagno, Professor of Philosophy, for receiving a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Insight Grant in the amount of $95,000 for his project “The Struggle with Psyche and Its Implications for Early Phenomenology.” Phenomenology is a discipline forming a bridge between psychology and philosophy.
Dr. Calcagno applied for the SSHRC Grant to achieve three things:
(1) to help philosophy and phenomenology rethink its relation to psychology, as psychology used to be subfield of philosophy;
(2) to highlight the work of phenomenologists especially women thinkers like Gerda Walther, Hedwig Conrad-Martius, and Edith Stein;
(3) to reconstruct a phenomenological account of psyche and its possible benefits.
The end goal of the project is to produce a series of scholarly papers and a monograph that reflect these aims.
The project, which will unfold over five years, aims to recover one of the important sources for early phenomenological thinking: psychology.
It will attempt to reconstruct the highly developed account of phenomenological psychology offered by thinkers like Edith Stein, Gerda Walther and Hedwig Conrad-Martius. Dr. Calcagno will examine concepts such as robust accounts of the ego, sociality, gender, sex, will, motivation, habits, affectivity, the unconscious, as well as accounts of personal identity and a sense of the self. Of primary interest is how phenomenological psychology comes to condition and even enhance processes of rational thinking and judgement.
“Early phenomenology developed its own account of psyche, which ultimately conditions logic and rational thought,” explains Dr. Calcagno. It was through thinkers like Theodor Lipps and Alexander Pfänder that phenomenology came to develop its psychology, which became increasingly marginalised as Edmund Husserl began to take phenomenology into a logical and transcendental frameworks, he adds.
At King’s, Dr. Calcagno teaches PHIL 1300E: Introduction to Philosophy, PHIL 2208E: An Introduction to Social and Political Thought, and PHIL 3885G: Advanced Topics in Social Political Thought: The Waningof Philosophies of Difference and the Rise of the New Universalism. He is a Member of the Royal Society of Canada, College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists.