Thiemo Breyer is professor of Phenomenology and Anthropology at the Department of Philosophy at University of Cologne and director of the Husserl Archive there. Previously, he was junior professor for Transformations of Knowledge at the a.r.t.e.s. Graduate School for the Humanities Cologne. Fellowships took him to the Mahindra Humanities Center at Harvard University and the Center for Interdisciplinary Research (ZiF) at Bielefeld University. He held visiting professorships in Kyoto, Milan, Mainz, and Montreal.
As a philosopher with training and continuing interests in anthropology and cognitive science, Thiemo Breyer is concerned with questions of consciousness, corporeality, emotions, and intersubjectivity from an interdisciplinary perspective. His research aims to describe and conceptualize how people – given specific socio-cultural contexts, mental schemata, and bodily habits – understand themselves, the world, and others, and how they articulate this understanding.
During his HIAS fellowship, Thiemo Breyer will examine the relationship between philosophy and ethnology with regards to the possibilities and limitations of phenomenological methods for analyses in ethnography. The traditions of phenomenological sociology and hermeneutic cultural studies are brought into dialogue with current regional field research. A thematic focus is the human capacity for empathy – not only with other people, but also with animals, natural phenomena, and spiritual entities.
His collaboration partner is Michael Schnegg, head of the Institute of Social & Cultural Anthropology, Department of Cultural History and Cultural Studies at Universität Hamburg.
Thiemo Breyer’s HIAS Fellowship is funded by the Academy of Sciences and Humanities in Hamburg.
Photo: Jennifer Latuperisa-Andresen (@fraumuksch), Chief’s Island, Botswana (unsplash)
- Empathy Beyond the Human. The Social Construction of a Multispecies World, Michael Schnegg und Thiemo Breyer, Ethnos, Dezember 2022
Publications in the Fellows’ Library
- Verkörperte Intersubjektivität und Empathie, Klostermann, Frankfurt a. Main 2015
- Epistemological Dimensions of Evolutionary Psychology, Springer, Science+Business Media New York 2015
- Phenomenology of Thinking, Philosophical Investigations Into the Character of Cognitive Experiences, Edited by Thiemo Breyer and Christopher Gutland, Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, London and New York 2016