[SydPhil] REMINDER: USyd Postgrad Colloquium May 26: Xavier Symons, "John Duns Scotus on Mind Expanding Substances"

Elena Walsh elenawalsh at gmail.com
Fri May 23 14:59:49 AEST 2014

>> Dear all,
> The next USyd philosophy postgraduate colloquium will be held on Monday
> May 26 @ 2pm in the Muniment room (Quadrangle building, University of
> Sydney).  All very welcome!!
> Talk details:
> *John Duns Scotus on Mind Expanding Substances (Xavier Symons)*
> In this paper I will argue that the extended mind thesis (EMT), expounded
> by Clarke and Chalmers (2008, 1998), is also found in the writings of John
> Duns Scotus (1308). Scotus asserted that a thing’s physical location ‘in’ the
> head was irrelevant to it’s being part of the mind. I will begin with a
> discussion of Scotus’s theory of intuitive cognition, the notion that we
> intellectually intuit the existence and presence of objects in the world
> around us. According to Scotus, the objects of such cognitions play direct
> causal roles in the process. Following this I will discuss Scotus’s
> criteria for something being ‘in’ the mind. He argued that something is
> ‘in’ the mind if it bears a direct causal relation to the ‘passive
> intellect’ (the ‘*knowing*’ part of the mind). It is not necessary for
> something to actually ‘inhere’ in the mind; it is sufficient for it to have
> this causal relation. Insofar as this is true objects that directly cause
> cognition are ‘in’ the mind, despite not inhering in it. To this extent,
> the idea that mind is ‘in the skin’ (as Clarke and Chalmers put it) breaks
> down. I conclude my paper with the suggestion that we can profit from
> Scotus’s heavily ‘metaphysical’ treatment of the EMT.
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