Husserl and dimensions of temporality: A framework for the analysis of temporal experience

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Temporality is one of the key components of our experience, but the experience of time is hardly one and the same for all of us throughout our lives. The experience of time in its entirety is not solid and simple. It is a fluid and complex phenomenon consisting of a multitude of dimensions. In medical phenomenology and phenomenological psychopathology there are ample cases of different temporal experiences analysed in the context of the illness experience. However, only a few attempts have been made to propose a conceptual framework that could not only be used to conduct a concrete analysis in a more systematic manner, but also provide a solid and comprehensive theoretical basis. The aim of this article is to draw on the rich distinctions found in Husserl's phenomenology to outline a framework of different temporal dimensions for the analysis of temporal experience. The framework could provide conceptual tools to analyse temporal experiences in any field of study that deals with the human experience, including medical phenomenology and phenomenological psychopathology. The resulting analysis would be not only clearer, more comprehensive and precise, but also more systematic and conceptually consistent. The framework consists of fourteen dimensions of temporal experience ordered in seven binary distinctions: (1) change and structure, (2) immanence and transcendence, (3) ownness and intersubjectivity, (4) passivity and activity, (5) receptivity and spontaneity, (6) presentation and representation, (7) unthematized temporality and thematized temporality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)186-211
Number of pages26
JournalHorizon. Studies in Phenomenology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Altered states of consciousness
  • Edmund Husserl
  • Framework
  • Phenomenology
  • Psychopathology
  • Qualitative research
  • Temporality
  • Time experience

Field of Science*

  • 6.3 Philosophy, Ethics and Religion

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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