Aquinas on Mind

Front Cover
Psychology Press, 1994 - Philosophy - 182 pages
Aquinas' mature works, though theological in intent, contain much material which is philosophical in the sense that it is not in any way dependent on beliefs which are specifically Christian. His philosophical psychology, or philosophy of mind, was not taken seriously by secular thinkers, with one or two exceptions, from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries because of the dominance of ideas deriving from Descartes. In the present century many philosophers have come to regard the Cartesian system as quite exploded, and it can now be seen that Aquinas' philosophy of mind has a great contemporary interest. This book makes accessible those parts of Aquinas' system which are of enduring value. The kernel of the work is a close reading of the sections of Summa Theologiae which are devoted to human intellect and will and to the relationship between soul and body. It presupposes no knowledge of Latin or of medieval history, and relates Aquinas' system to a tradition of philosophy of mind inaugurated in the Anglo-American community by Wittgenstein and Ryle. Anthony Kenny is unusually qualified to bring together the medieval and modern philosophical insights, since he was trained in scholastic philosophy at the Gregorian University in Rome and has taught analytic philosophy in Oxford for many years.
 

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Contents

Why read Aquinas?
1
Mind and metaphysics
15
Perception and imagination
31
Appetite and will
59
The freedom of the will
75
Sense imagination and intellect
89
Knowledge of particulars
111
The nature of the soul
129
Mind and body
145
Notes
161
Further reading
177
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