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PHANERON

Student: Nourhan Wahdan
Type of work: Editorial
Supervision:
Jochen Braun
Year: 2014

“Phaneron” * is an odd and unfamiliar term, a term created by the famous Charles Sanders Pierce in 1905. Previously mentioned is his perspective of the world introducing the self-coined term; the Phaneron. The word is derived from the Greek word “phaneros”* which means “visible”. To put it in the simplest way possible, the Phaneron is the world filtered through one’s five none psychic senses: sight, touch, smell, taste, and hearing. Through these one creates personal experience and therefore memories, and consequently one’s subjective reality.

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The aim of this research is to explore the Phaneron and through its philosophy I have three main objectives I’d like to achieve:

Explaining C. S. Peirce’s Phaneroscopy and previous similar theories
Get people to think and discuss
Creating user experience

My final outcome would be a visual book, where all three objectives and carefully and successfully executed. The phaneron is one’s memories and experiences that have been formed due to one’s interaction with people and objects, and that is the main focus and the key message behind the project. If one is not able to live forever then one would never fully unravel all the mysteries of the universe... or perhaps even if one was immortal, one might still not be able to explore everything that exists because then it would still be in one’s subjective perspective, and objective reality would still be unknown, let alone other minds’ subjective realities. This is essentially what phaneroscopy is all about.

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Philosophy is no common nor easy topic one would study or delve in, instead one would think that philosophy should and can only be discussed by the intellects, philosophers and their students. However, philosophy like any other science should be accessible to everybody. I will be giving a brief and simple introduction to one of the many interesting theories and hypotheses, ones that discuss reality of things and distinguishing between what is real and what is figment. Users will be presented objectively with several various hypotheses and their refutations, therefore leaving room for discussion, and perhaps later questioning the theories, and if interest was raised one will be researching on their own in the theories they found most interesting.

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Finally – Creating a user experience.

In my graphical approach I want to achieve two kinds of user experiences; the first; is Emotional experience, and this can be done through taking the user in a journey inside the mysteries of philosophy and Phaneroscopy through visuals that complements some of the text that will be included, explaining the origins of the theory and the concept of the Phaneron, this will be executed through photo manipulation and collage. The second kind of experience would be; Sensory experience, allowing the user to use certain paper materials to explore within the book and the key message would be “You never see the whole picture”.

This would be communicated through two images overlapping on one another with a certain color code and the user would be allowed to see two images one through a red filter, and the other through a cyan one. In this world we’re all explorers with time we learn common knowledge through similar experiences such as; objects that are closer look bigger than those that are further. Then there are personal and unique experiences according to one’s cultural background, education level, personality, and so on Such as learning how to fly a plane, or playing the guitar, falling in love, learning physics and so on.

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