Naturalism and the Ethical Meaning of Phenomenology

  • Andrea Zhok University of Milan
Keywords: phenomenology; objectivism; epiphenomenalism; mental causation; meaning


The search for spaces of cooperation between the methodology of natural sciences (cognitive sciences in particular) and the phenomenological approach has gained importance over time. However, it is necessary not to lose sight of the fact that Husserlian phenomenology was first and foremost characterized by a profound critique of ontological naturalism, a critique crucial for understanding the ethical sense of the phenomenological operation. To clarify this point, it is necessary to clarify the problematic role that naturalism has played - and continues to play - on the ethical level, and the way in which phenomenological criticism is able to neutralize it. In the following pages we will first try to illustrate the impact of ontological naturalism on the contemporary ethical vision and then to show how the phenomenological perspective is best understandable as a way to reveal the blind spots of naturalism, to denounce its implicit reductionism, and to reopen an ethical perspective that the historical establishment of a naturalistic worldview had artificially closed.

How to Cite
Zhok, A. (2023). Naturalism and the Ethical Meaning of Phenomenology. HUMANA.MENTE Journal of Philosophical Studies, 16(43), 1-25. Retrieved from