Paul Ricoeur on the Recognition of Anxiety: Phenomenological Hermeneutics in Action
The philosophical concept of anxiety, which is usually associated with Kierkegaard and Heidegger's existential philosophy, seems to be an underestimated notion in Paul Ricoeur's phenomenological hermeneutics, while its role is important - anxiety appears to serve as the grounding for hope in his hermeneutics of self. The article aims to show how the anxiety is explained in Ricoeur's philosophy through attention and recognition, and how the anxiety is reflected in the narrative forms, or descriptions of vivencia . These descriptions may be seen as the verbal explanation of the so-called affective niche or affective scaffolding , which is a form of cultural adaptation, attempting to interpret and comprehend one's state of mind and way of the perception of the world as such in the given moment. The research and further dialogue based on these narrations may become an important source to recover from anxiety disorder, by discovering its existential meaning and, at the same time, accepting personal responsibility for it. Ricoeur's phenomenological hermeneutics made an important theoretical contribution in understanding the essential aspects of anxiety and hope; but it also developed prolific methods of interpretation, that could be practically applied in health care and psychotherapy; these can be shown on the example of the psychotherapeutic method of the usage of so-called 'anxiety protocols', which aim to arrange the hermeneutical co-research to help patient/client to recognize and overcome its anxiety disorders.