National University

Faculty Member Publishes Book on Neurophenomenology

Susan Gordon, Ph.D., a core adjunct professor in the College of Letters and Sciences, is the editor and contributing author of a new book, Neurophenomenology and Its Applications to Psychology, which presents a collection of papers featured at the 117th annual convention of the American Psychological Association in the symposium, “Neurophenomenology and the Enactive Approach to Cognition” in Toronto, Canada in 2009.

The book explores the meaning and import of neurophenomenology (i.e., phenomenology in its relationship to the study of the nervous system), the philosophy of enactive or embodied cognition, and the theory of autopoiesis (self-production) interpreted for psychologists.

Phenomenology studies consciousness as it is experienced from the first-person point of view. Experience must be grasped holistically as a relationship in which the subject relates to the object through its meaning. This book reinterprets neurophenomenology in psychological context as a way to integrate interdisciplinary knowledge across the fields of psychological theory, research, and practice. It challenges the dominant reductionistic worldview that governs the definition of problems and methodologies in the physical and life sciences and explores cognitive and affective neuroscience within the theoretical framework of phenomenology.

Dr. Gordon has taught for the department of psychology at National University for five years. She is also research director of the Southbury Clinic for Traditional Medicines, in Southbury, Connecticut. She earned her doctorate in the History and Philosophy of Psychology (mind/body medicine) from Saybrook University, and studied naturopathic medicine at Bastyr University.

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