Research philosophy and Socrates: rediscovering the birth of phenomenology
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Research philosophy and Socrates: rediscovering the birth of phenomenology

Victoria Vivilaki Community midwife, Spili Health Centre, Greek National Health Service, Crete, Greece
Martin Johnson Professor, School of Nursing, University of Salford, Greater Manchester, UK

Socrates can, to some extent, be credited with an original conception of what is now seen as 20th century phenomenology ‘invented’ by Heidegger. With phenomenology becoming more recognised as important in understanding health care and all its complexities, this article by Victoria Vivilaki and Martin Johnson provides a theoretical evaluation of some of the terminology and the underpinning philosophy used in recent phenomenological studies

The number of phenomenological studies published in nursing journals is rising, perhaps because phenomenology provides answers to or insights into important questions or issues in health research. According to McKibbon and Gadd (2004), out of 355 published qualitative studies (60,330 articles in healthcare journals were reviewed), approximately 37 per cent were claimed to be phenomenological ones, followed by grounded theory (35 per cent) and ethnography (18 per cent). Therefore, the literature underlines the need for more ‘effective’ phenomenological methods that will benefit from interleaving or integration with the underpinning philosophy of phenomenology.

Nurse Researcher. 16, 1, 84-92. doi: 10.7748/nr2008.

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