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(2006) The sphere of attention, Dordrecht, Springer.


Sven Arvidson

pp. 177-189

The sphere of attention is a dynamic embodied attending in the world organized according to gestalt principles in the three dimensions of theme, context, and margin. The sphere of attention is enclosing and inclusive but not a transcendence in immanence. As a sphere of attention, a particular human being is fluid and active, a meaning-giving activity that is non-substantial, not a thing. Human beings live the world in terms of theme, context, and margin. The theme is the central gestalt, coherent, segregated, and consolidated, or striving to be so. The theme is either a gestalt stabilized, or coming into or going out of central concern in the sphere of attention. The thematic context is a unity by relevancy for the theme, a network of non-consolidated gestalts, more or less articulated, organized by the theme as its center, and materially relevant to that theme. The margin also consists of non-centralized gestalts, and is irrelevant to the theme and thematic context; it is external to their unity by relevancy. There is no material relation between the margin on the one hand, and the context and theme on the other, but the halo in the margin includes the current sector of the streaming in attending, kinesthetic sense of embodiment, and the environing world. The horizon in the margin is the indefinitely continued content that merely accompanies a given theme and thematic context, and this horizon is implied by the halo in the margin.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1007/1-4020-3572-1_7

Full citation:

Arvidson, (2006). Conclusion, in The sphere of attention, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 177-189.

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