Takuya Niikawa
Kobe University
Katsunori Miyahara
Hokkaido University
The subjective features of psychological phenomena have been studied intensively in experimental science in recent years. Although various methods have been proposed to identify subjective features of psychological phenomena, there are elusive subjective features such as the spatiotemporal structure of experience, which are difficult to capture without some additional methodological tools. We propose a new experimental method to address this challenge, which we call the contrast-based experimental phenomenological method (CEP). CEP proceeds in four steps: (i) front-loading phenomenology, (ii) online second-personal interview, (iii) questionnaire survey, and (iv) hypotheses testing. It differs from other experimental phenomenological methods in that it takes advantage of phenomenal contrasts in collecting phenomenological data. In this paper, we verify the validity and productivity of this method by applying it to binocular rivalry (BR). The study contributes to empirical research on BR in three respects. First, it provides additional evidence for existing propositions about the subjective features of BR: e.g. the proposition that the temporal dynamics of the experience depend upon subject-dependent parameters such as attentional change. Second, it deepens our understanding of the spatiotemporal structures of the transition phase of BR. Third, it elicits new research questions about depth experience and individual differences in BR. The presence of such contributions demonstrates the validity and productivity of CEP.
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What is It Like to Be a Bat?Thomas Nagel - 2003 - In John Heil (ed.), Philosophy of Mind: A Guide and Anthology. Oxford University Press.
The Validity of First-Person Descriptions as Authenticity and Coherence.Claire Petitmengin - 2009 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 16 (10-12):10-12.

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