The life-world and the particular sub-worlds
In his paper "On Multiple Realities" (Collected Papers, Vol. I, p. 207) Alfred Schutz develops a "typology" (p. 234) of sub-universes of reality which he prefers to call "finite provinces of meaning" (p. 230). He points out the "cognitive style" of these worlds through general characterizations of the various ways in which consciousness in experience relates to each of them (pp. 229ff.) and through an exposition of the differing basic features of the diverse worlds themselves. The particular sub-universe of "working" (which to a certain extent he equates with that of the "natural attitude") stands out as paramount over against the many other sub-universes of reality (p. 226). All other sub-universes such as the ones produced by the imagination, the worlds experienced in dreams and the worlds of the sciences (especially those of the social sciences) are considered to be modifications of it (p. 232). The main topic of Schutz's paper was the question of how such a modification is brought about by the unified life of consciousness and how, specifically, the transition from one particular sub-universe to another is effected by withdrawing or bestowing (respectively) "the accent of reality" (pp. 233ff.).
Marx, W. (1970)., The life-world and the particular sub-worlds, in M. Natanson (ed.), Phenomenology and social reality, Den Haag, Nijhoff, pp. 62-72.
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