[SydPhil] SHAPE philosophy talk, USYD Fri March 7, 10.30am

David Macarthur david.macarthur at sydney.edu.au
Fri Feb 28 12:44:50 AEDT 2014

Next week’s SHAPE philosophy seminar will be presented by Jeremy Bell (PhD Candidate, University of Chicago).

The title of his talk is: "Aquinas on Sensation"

Since the 1960s there have been sporadic pleas for analytic philosophers to take seriously Aquinas' account of intellect, but his account of sensation has found few defenders. John Haldane, a recent champion of Thomism in philosophy of mind, describes this account as 'self-contradictory'. Yet Aquinas' account of intellect presupposes his account of sensation. No authentically Thomist theory of mind can simply jettison or disregard the latter. In this paper I outline its general principles and what I take to be their motivation. I seek to show that Aquinas' well-known affirmation, following Aristotle, of the 'identity' of percipient and perceived can and should be taken literally. I also argue, against Robert Pasnau and others, that Aquinas' account of sensation is in no sense a materialist one and, against Haldane, that its seemingly incongruous combination of materialist and immaterialist elements does not render it self-contradictory.

Time: Fri March 7, 10.30am

Place: Muniment Room, S401 – under the central clock tower, level 1, Main Quad, The University of Sydney.


Dr. David Macarthur | Senior Lecturer & UG Coordinator
Philosophy Department | SOPHI
University of Sydney, 2006 | Australia
Ph: +61-2-9351-3193

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