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BTTTT! is solely interested in the phenomenological practice of carefully describing the appearances of things in their concrete, situational givenness, without drawing on metaphysical, scientific, or other explanatory preconceptions. We ascribe to no single “orthodox” phenomenological method. Indeed, we embrace diverse approaches to “the things themselves,” so long as these approaches are focused on encounters with experience untainted by conceptual impositions. The goal should be to live behind one’s own eyes, to heed the call of things, and to attempt to give things their own voice as purely as possible, so as to reveal their sense and significance within their larger matrices of lived meaning.

BTTTT! invites those engaged in this kind of phenomenological practice to generate original descriptions of the life-world.  What we want →

Taking Edmund Husserl’s dictum to heart yet finding in it a new direction, The Things Themselves is an attempt to return philosophy to the world and, in so doing, know ourselves and our place in that world anew. The book deals with the myriad ways in which a phenomenological approach to philosophy can inform commonplace experiences and understanding. From a trip to Disneyland to a morning spent watching television exercise shows, from the commitment to become a vegetarian to the choice to become a political revolutionary, this book breaks down the barrier between theory and praxis, demanding that we both investigate and hold ourselves accountable to this world. Written in an accessible yet philosophically rigorous style, H. Peter Steeves not only attempts to return philosophy to the world but also to return philosophy to the nonspecialist, to those simply interested in the simplest things, the things themselves that fill our lives but inevitably, and most wondrously, prove anything but simple.

In this profoundly important and original book, Lisa Guenther examines the death-in-life experience of solitary confinement in America from the early nineteenth century to today’s supermax prisons. Documenting how solitary confinement undermines prisoners’ sense of identity and their ability to understand the world, Guenther demonstrates the real effects of forcibly isolating a person for weeks, months, or years.

Life Takes Place argues that, even in our mobile, hypermodern world, human life is impossible without place. Seamon asks the question: why does life take place? He draws on examples of specific places and place experiences to understand place more broadly. Advocating for a holistic way of understanding that he calls “synergistic relationality,” Seamon defines places as spatial fields that gather, activate, sustain, identify, and interconnect things, human beings, experiences, meanings, and events.

Puncta is an open-access, peer-reviewed philosophical journal established with the specific intention of redirecting phenomenological intentionality. It is our belief that phenomenology is not a mere descriptive practice, but an enactment of critique, that is, an ongoing process of revealing and interrogating the concrete conditions, institutions, and assumptions that structure lived experience, phenomenological inquiry, and thinking. We invite submissions that engage the critical turn of phenomenology via analyses of socio-political phenomena, reflections on the limits and challenges of phenomenological inquiry, or by attending to the history of philosophy, either through its silences or its canonical figures.

Gallagher: The cruel and unusual phenomenology of solitary confinement

What happens when subjects are deprived of intersubjective contact? This paper looks closely at the phenomenology and psychology of one example of that deprivation: solitary confinement. It also puts the phenomenology and psychology of solitary confinement touse in the legal context. Not only is there no consensus on whether solitary confinement is a “cruel and unusual punishment,” there is no consensus on the definition of the term “cruel” in the use of that legal phrase. I argue that we can find a moral consensus on the meaning of “cruelty” by looking specifically at the phenomenology and psychology of solitary confinement.

Shaun Gallagher: The cruel and unusual phenomenology of solitary confinement