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Title:Walking as knowing: an interpretative phenomenological analysis of leisure in the lived experience of urban walking
Author(s):Reible, Heidi
Director of Research:Payne, Laura L.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Payne, Laura L.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Stewart, William P.; Santos, Carla A.; Micale, Mark S.
Department / Program:Recreation, Sport and Tourism
Discipline:Recreation, Sport, and Tourism
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Leisure studies
Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis
city walking
aesthetic meaning
chance mindfulness
Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht
Alfred Schutz
Abstract:This research probes the relevance of literature on walking and meaningfulness placed on walking by the walker, from viewpoints of history, literature, language, and the taken-for-granted life-world as inscribed in Théorie de la Demarche (Balzac, 1981), a 19th Century essay on walking and expressed in the first hand accounts of 21st Century New York City walkers from a lived experience perspective. This research sought to gain understanding of the perceptions of walkers who choose walking for its own sake even while in the contested pedestrian space of a densely populated, gridlocked, metropolitan area. Literary influences affected the way participants viewed the world while walking. Moments of sensory essences noticed by the participants while walking took the forms of embodied rhythm, stimulated senses, and mindful pace. These were conduits for gathering tangible connections to the past, to people, to place, and to time. Meaningfulness came from appropriating their time, memories, and independence in the midst of pressure to do otherwise. These meanings reinforced pride in their beliefs that walking set them apart from the stresses of the high volume intrusiveness of city living. Walking as voiced by the participants here, shows the lived experiential awareness as: reflexive, aesthetic articulation; transient, sensorial presence; and self-referential, epiphanic meaning. This research shows significance to practice in affecting remembering in such a way as to improve appreciation of mutually shared meanings and communication between practitioners and their constituents.
Issue Date:2013-05-24
Rights Information:Copyright 2013 Heidi Lee Reible.
Date Available in IDEALS:2013-05-24
Date Deposited:2013-05

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