An Embodied Approach to the Study of Experience (EASE)

ONLINE - 5th to 9th October

This conference seeks to advance the methodological, theoretical and epistemological challenges posed by the implementation of an embodied approach to the study of the experience.

It is organized by the Centro de Estudios Laboratorio de Fenomenología Corporal (LAFEC) with the sponsorship of the Psychology Faculty of the Diego Portales University and the National Agency of Research and Development of Chile (project REDI170181). 

The advent of the enactive approach to cognition produced a paradigm shift that has given a central place to the body and subjective experience in various fields of research. This paradigm shift converges with the development of the field of phenomenology, which gives an increasingly central role to embodiment in the study and understanding of human experience. Notions such as body resonance, body consciousness, aesthetic body resonance, body memory, somatic markers, among others, have been opening a fruitful dialogue both at philosophical and epistemological levels as well as at an applied level (for example in areas such as cognitive sciences, neurosciences, psychology, psychiatry, linguistics, medicine, anthropology, education, artificial intelligence, design, architecture, urbanism, etc.). 

The growing emphasis on the study of lived experience requires methodologies that permits its study from a first-person perspective. This has allowed the establishment of bridges between the scientific world and the arts as practices that offer alternatives roads to the understanding of human experience.

These developments involve theoretical, epistemological and methodological challenges that we have organized around the following axes:


1. What do we mean by the notion of Experience?

  • What do we mean by lived experience? Is it the notion differently understood in the enactive and the embodied approach? In different branches of phenomenology? Which methodological consequences for the study of experience have these different understandings? 
  • Considering the phenomenological approach as a practice for the study of experience, how do we understand the notion of “structure” of experience? 
  • If a person’s socio-cultural context and previous experiences are a constitutive part of the experience under study, how do we understand the suspension of the “natural attitude”? To what extent is it possible?

2. The notion of memory and the study of experience

  • Given that experience is always studied in retrospect, how is memory understood from the enactive and the embodied approaches? How is it understood from a phenomenological approach? What are the methodological and epistemological consequences of such understandings? 
  • How is the phenomenon of false memories understood under these approaches?
  • How can enactive, embodied and phenomenological frameworks broaden our understanding and treatment of traumatic memories? 
  • Conversely, how can somatic approaches to trauma treatment broaden our understanding of the notion of memory?

3. Roads to human experience: the question of language

  • How do we understand the relationship between experience and language within the enactive approach to cognition? 
  • Since the possibility of referring to our experiences goes hand in hand with language development, can we consider the existence of pre-conceptual dimensions of experience? If so, does verbalizing our experiences imply reducing them or being able to distinguish them? 
  • What is the difference between expressing, describing and representing one’s own experience? 
  • Can body and expressive practices serve as tools to address the non-conceptual and conceptual dimensions of experience?  If so, what would be the epistemological implications of such a possibility?

The format of the conference

The conference will take place in an ON-LINE format, using the Zoom platform, over the course of five days. It will combine oral presentations and practical workshops. Poster presentations will be available on our website during the duration of the conference. The detail of the program will be available soon in this webpage.

The conference will be in Spanish and English and will have simultaneous translation in both languages.

Call for Posters

We invite you to participate in this conference and to submit posters for presentation regarding the questions described above or other related issues. While this conference is focused on philosophical and psychological issues, it is open to scientific contributions from different disciplines. For registration and submissions, please follow the registration link. The registration is open to anyone and not restricted to academic scholars. 

If you would like to submit a poster proposal, in your registration include an abstract in Spanish or English, with a maximum of 300 words.

The deadline for abstract submissions is the 31st July. Notification of selected abstracts will be given by the 21st August.

The poster session will be displayed on our website. For this, the specifications are as follows:

The poster should be arranged vertically, with the following measurements: width 90 cm and length 120 cm (or maintaining this proportion). In addition, a video recorded in a vertical position must be sent, explaining the content of the poster. This video must have a maximum duration of 2 minutes. 

The posters will be evaluated by the conference attendees. The best one evaluated will receive a prize!


Special Issue

Please also watch our Call for Papers that accompanies the conference. Selected papers will be published after the conference as Target Articles in the journal Constructivist Foundations, accompanied by Open Peer Commentaries.

For further questions regarding submissions please contact Camila Valenzuela at

Conference fees

Standard fee: $40.000 CLP (60 USD) 

Early registration: $30.000 CLP (45 USD) before the 31st July

Limited Vacancies!

confirmed Speakers

École Normale Supérieure, Paris. 

Directeur de Recherche at the CNRS, in Paris, France, Michel is presently based at the Archives Husserl, a center of research in Phenomenology. He received successively his M.D., his Ph.D. in physics, and his «Habilitation» in philosophy in Paris. He worked as a research scientist in biophysics from 1978 to 1990. From 1990 onwards, he turned to the philosophy of physics. He edited texts by Erwin Schrödinger and developed a neo-kantian philosophy of quantum mechanics. In 1997 he received an award from the Academie des sciences morales et politiques for his work in the philosophy of quantum mechanics. Later on, he studied the relations between the philosophy of physics and the philosophy of mind, working in close collaboration with Francisco Varela. He then learnt some Sanskrit and published a book (De l’intérieur du monde, 2010) in which he draws a parallel between Buddhist dependent arising and non-supervenient relations, in quantum physics and the theory of knowledge. He recently developed a conception of consciousness inspired from an epistemology of first-person knowledge, together with a phenomenological critique of naturalist theories of consciousness.

Naropa University, USA.

Christine Caldwell, Ph.D., BC-DMT, LPC, NCC, ACS, is the founder of and
professor emeritus in the Somatic Counseling Program at Naropa University,
where she taught somatic counseling, clinical neuroscience, research, and
diversity issues. Her work, called the Moving Cycle, spotlights natural play, early
physical imprinting, fully sequenced movement processes, the opportunities in
addiction, and a trust in the authoritative knowledge of the body. She has taught
at the University of Maryland, George Washington, Concordia, Seoul Women’s
University, Southwestern College, and Pacifica, and trains, teaches and lectures
internationally. She has published over 30 articles and chapters, and her books
include Getting Our Bodies Back, Getting In Touch, The Body and Oppression,
and Bodyfulness.

Professor of Philosophy University Rouen Normandie                                                    University Member Husserl-Archives Ecole Normale Supérieure Ulm Paris

My research has been orienting for three decades by a general reform of phenomenology as a practical experiential discipline. Hence my longstanding inquiry into bodily, intersubjective, attentional and emotional experiences in their micro-dynamics and as directly lived by a singular subject ; this, together with their psychopathological counterparts and alterations in depression, schizophrenia and more generally in chronic diseases and behaviors, chronicity being seen as a traverse pathology of our post-modern civilization (Adochroniq, ongoing Researchprogram in Normandy).

I led an ANR Researchprogram (2012-2025, ENS Paris) on the virginal theme of surprise as framed by a pionneering methodology, cardiophenomenology as a refinement of  neurophenomenology, including its psychopathological and social components.  My latest publication : La surprise du sujet. Un sujet cardial (2018). In addition, I currently lead the Adochroniq Research Program at the University of Rouen-Normandy, which focusses on chronic diseases in teenagers (diabetes, anorexia, schizophrenia) with a first and second person approach based on microphenomenological and biographical interviews.

My very recent orientation coincides with a direct political involvement with the France insoumise movement in France from 2017 onwards. It currently leads me to a reframing of phenomenology as an eco-political feminist lived practice, together with a rereading of the philosophy of Simone de Beauvoir.

University of Heidelberg, Germany.

Thomas Fuchs, psychiatrist and philosopher, is Karl Jaspers Professor for Philosophy and Psychiatry at the Department of General Psychiatry, Universität Heidelberg. His research areas lie at the intersection of phenomenology, psychopathology and cognitive neuroscience, with a main emphasis on embodiment, enactivism, temporality and intersubjectivity.

Alanus University for Arts and Social Sciences, Germany.

Head of DMT Program/Director of the Research Institute for Creative Arts Therapies (RIArT). Her research interests are in the area of embodiment and related theoretical approaches such as enaction, dynamic systems theory, ecological approaches, which understand the human condition as based upon its organismic nature with its capacity for self-organization and interactional ressonance. She apply this approach in the area of creative arts therapies, where music, art, dance, theatre, poetry, and play are used for promoting physical, social, and psychological health and body mind unity.


Universidad de Chile, Chile.
Es licenciado en Ciencias con mención en Biología y Doctor en Ciencias Biológicas con mención en Fisiología y Neurobiología, de la Universidad de Chile. Es miembro fundador de la Sociedad Chilena de Biología Evolutiva y de la Sociedad Chilena de Neurociencias. A su vez, pertenece a la Society for Neurosciences de Estados Unidos y a la Sociedad de Biología de Chile. Ha dirigido numerosas unidades de investigación, de estudiantes de Pregrado y Postgrado, interesándose principalmente en la anatomía y fisiología comparada del sistema visual en vertebrados.

Institut Mines-Télécom and Archives Husserl, ENS, Paris.

After studies in Buddhist philosophy and ten years of experience in information system design, Claire Petitmengin, completed her PhD thesis under the supervision of Francisco Varela at the Ecole Polytechnique in Paris, on the subject of the lived experience that accompanies the emergence of an intuition. She is presently Professor Emerita at the Institut Mines-Télécom and member of the Archives Husserl (Ecole Normale Supérieure) in Paris. Her research focuses on the usually unrecognized dynamics of lived experience and “micro-phenomenological” methods enabling us to become aware of it and describe it. She studies the epistemological conditions of these methods, as well as their contemplative, educational, therapeutic, and artistic applications. She has written numerous scientific articles and two books: L’expérience intuitive, and Le chemin du milieu: Introduction à la vacuité dans la pensée bouddhiste indienne. She also edited Ten years of viewing from within: The legacy of Francisco Varela, which commemorates the tenth anniversary of the publication of The View from Within, wherein Francisco Varela designed the foundations of a research program on lived experience.

Asociación Internacional para la Psicoterapia y
Psicoanalisis Relacional, Chile.

María Catalina Scott Espínola is a psychologist graduated from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and an associated member of the Chilean chapter of the International Association of Psychoanalysis and Relational Psychotherapy (IARPP).

Currently, and for more than three decades, she has dedicated herself to psychoanalytic psychotherapy for adults through her private practice as an independent psychologist and, in addition, she has worked as an academic at the university in these fields.

University of Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Sebastjan Vörös is Assistant Professor at the Department of Philosophy (University of Ljubljana). In 2008, he graduated in English language and literature and philosophy (double-major study programme), and in 2015 he graduated in history. From 2010 to 2013, he was employed as a Junior Researcher at the University of Ljubljana, where he successfully defended his doctoral thesis, which was later published in book form (The Images of the Unimaginable: (Neuro)Science, Phenomenology, Mysticism). His main areas of research include philosophy of mind, philosophy of science, epistemology, philosophy of religion, phenomenology, and radical constructivism.

confirmed workshops

Naropa University, USA.

This workshop will experientially explore the continuum from wordless body narrative to poetic language and to everyday speech. All along this continuum, we will inquire into who we experience ourselves to be in these various locations, and how these various identities can be integrated, for purposes of healing, creativity, and inquiry. In exploring the phenomenal body, we can enhance our understanding of what it means to lead a self-reflective life, and what it means to share this life with others.

Centro de Integración Cognitivo Corporal, Chile. 

Biologist from the Universidad de Chile. In 1985 he began his research in «Dynamics of action of Emotions» in the Laboratory of Neurobiology and Experimental Epistemology of the Faculty of Sciences of the Universidad deChile, under the direction of Dr. H. Maturana. She is a founding member and director of the Center for Body Cognitive Integration, where she investigates and supervises the theoretical-practical application of the MICC in the areas of education, psychotherapy and personal development. Since 2011 she has been a professor in the Faculty of Physical and Mathematical Sciences at the Universidad de Chile, where she teaches the course «Cognitive-Corporal Integration, Learning and Communication».

This workshop consists of physical, attentional and reflective practices that facilitate in the participants the recognition of the prevalence of basic emotions – fear, anger, sadness, joy – which determine cognitive states that specify ways of emotion, acting and thinking.

Universidad de Santiago de Chile, Chile.

Felipe Cussen (Santiago, Chile, 1974) holds a PhD in Humanities at Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona), and teaches at Instituto de Estudios Avanzados, Universidad de Santiago de Chile. His main fields of research are experimental literature, the relationships between literature, visual arts and music, and mysticism. He’s one of the founders of La Oficina de la Nada, is part of Foro de Escritores, Collective Task, and collaborates regularly with the electronic musician Richi Tunacola. 

University of Heidelberg, Germany.

In this workshop, we will explore in more detail the phenomenology of temporality and body memory. We will look at the microstructure of temporal experience and the role body memory plays in protention or anticipation as well as in surprise and disappointment.
Regarding intercorporeality, we will highlight the relationship between body memory, the lived situation, and intersubjectivity. To this aim, different modalities of bodily interaction and their impact on embodied memory (e.g. pre-reflexive mutual reactions, imitations, postures, assuming a social role or habitus etc.) will be identified and described. Drawing from both empirical, notably psychological and psychopathological, and philosophical sources we will show how different manifestations of implicit body memory are grounded upon social interaction and communication. Moreover, we will explore the relationship between more basic (intercorporeal) and higher (incorporative) forms of body memory in an intersubjective context.

Arawana created and develops Social Presencing Theater (SPT), an embodied emerging social art form that explores the potential of Theory U (Otto Scharmer). She is co-founder and director of the Presencing Institute, where she teaches Awareness-based embodied Leadership programs, as well as for ALIA, and other institutions worldwide. She has a background in performative arts as a choreographer, performer and educator. From directing an interracial street dance company formed by the Boston Mayor’s Office for Cultural Affairs in the aftermath of the 1968 murder of Dr. Martin Luther King, to being one of the foremost performers of Japanese Court Dance (Bugaku) in the US. She has been Co-Director of the Dance Program at Naropa University, Boulder, CO; and founder-director of two contemporary dance companies in Cambridge. MA. She is an Acharya (senior teacher) in Shambhala –a global network of meditation centers applying mindfulness to create an “enlightened society.” She researches the aesthetic, relational, structural and phenomenological aspects of embodied practices and their potential for awareness-based personal and collective transformation.

Laura is a Social and Visual Anthropologist, Master in Mental Health for Social Sciences, Master Trainer in Systemic Constellations, Practitioner and International Teacher Social Presencing Theatre (SPT) and Theory U, with studies in Semiotics, Linguistics and Epistemology, and trainings in different embodied tools for Human Development. She is part of the Strategic Team of the Presencing Institute, where she does awareness-based action-research. She supports SPT and Theory U learning, application and development in Latinamerica and Spain, teaching and organizing local and regional programs, in collaboration with different organizations and Universities (actually FCEA at the Public Universitiy in Uruguay). She works as a Systemic Organizational Consultant, Trainer and Coach with an interdisciplinary and transversal approach of the Human Being in its multiple dimensions, integrating systemic and phenomenological methodologies for personal and collective transformation.

Arte Abisal, Chile.

Victoria Jolly (1982): – Chilean master in architecture from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso (PUCV) and visual artist. He is currently working as an assistant professor in the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism of the Pontificia Universidad Católica (PUC), giving experimental courses on the technology of concrete materials. Co-founder and inhabitant of the «Ciudad Abierta»since 2007, where she has developed her work of experimental architecture. President of the Cultural Corporation Amereida 2014-2016. Since 2015, she co-created the workshop Arte Abisal, artistic collective with autistic people, in Ciudad Abierta (2019). She has participated in experimental and artistic projects such as Poetic acts MOMA PS1-New York, USA (2012); art residence Ephemeral Art + Architecture I- Park Foundation (2012), United States; Utopia in Progress, CIVA Brussels, Belgium (2015). Curator of the exhibition «The invention of a sea, Amereida 1965/2017» at the MNBA, Santiago (2017). Editor of the book «Amereida, la invención de un mar», Polygraph, Barcelona (2019). She was invited to the Biennial of Contemporary Art BoCA 2019 to make a site-specific work at the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology (MAAT) in Lisbon, Portugal. Her professional development revolves around the experimentation of materials, participating in multidisciplinary projects as an architect and visual artist.

Sebastián de Larraechea (1981): – graduated composer and master in arts of the PUC, studied 3 years architecture in the PUCV and did a diploma of scenic direction in the Teatro de la Memoria. He is a teacher in the Universidad Andrés Bello and does private classes of musical composition and scenic art. He lives in the «Ciudad Abierta» of the Amereida Cultural Corporation, where he is in charge of carrying out free cultural activities and concerts open to the community, performing more than 70 concerts and 10 seminars on art and music. He is general director of the project art Abisal an artistic collective with young people with disabilities quintero. He has created works in different formats, such as for orchestra, camera, soloist instruments, films, plays and dance. creator and curator of the exhibition «the invention of a sea» held at the MNBA and later in the ex-prison cultural park. participates in the Biennial of contemporary art Lisboa «Boca».

Alanus University for Arts and Social Sciences, Germany.

The workshop will be an experiment between experiencing and writing. We will start with our earliest memories of experiencing beauty in our bodies. We will explore these beauty moments (of moving and being moved) and what they do for us in order to better understand this active factor of creative arts therapies. Depending on the group, we may also go into other factors such as symbolic self-completion. Factors will be explored on the individual and on the interpersonal level.

Universidad de Chile, Chile.

Danilo Rodriguez Lizana, psychologist and bachelor in social science of Diego Portales
University. Following his academic experience, he specialized as an adult clinical
psychologist in the Posrationalist Phenomenological Hermeneutic model at the Society of Postrationalist Cognitive Therapy. He is currently pursuing his Master’s degree on Adult Clinical Psychology, with a Cognitive Constructivist approach, at Universidad de Chile and finishing his training program in Micro phenomenological Interview at the Laboratorio de Fenomenología Corporal.
He has worked as clinical psychologist and psychotherapist in both, public and private
health systems. During the last time he has started to engage in the academic and
investigation areas. His research and personal interests are psychotherapy,
phenomenology and hermeneutics, artificial intelligence, mind philosophy, music,
literature and surf.