Consciousness by Sara Heinämaa, Vili Lähteenmäki, Pauliina Remes

By Sara Heinämaa, Vili Lähteenmäki, Pauliina Remes

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J. Hollingdale (London: Penguin, 2003): “‘Reason’ in philosophy”, esp. §5, 47–48, original Götzen – Dämmerung (1888). INTRODUCTION 21 diverse as kinaesthesia and proprioception or perceptual awareness and thought, forming a layer of mentality upon which higher functions are founded. 45 There is a cluster of recurring problems connected to the concept of reflexivity, a brief inquiry into which will also reveal the basic differences in the ways of using this concept. Let us enter the field from the point of view of a particular question, namely whether the mind’s capacity to reveal itself – in addition to an external object – includes another, as it were higher-order act, or rather belongs to the primary act which gives the external object.

INTRODUCTION 19 been subjected to many different types of critique, for example, pragmatic, semantic, transcendental and post-modern. 43 There is also the methodological controversy of whether subjectivity and selfhood should primarily be taken as empirical concepts or as transcendental ones. In this book, Kenneth Westphal’s chapter “Human Consciousness and its Transcendental Conditions” offers a forceful explication of Kant’s theory of the transcendental conditions of human experience. Westphal shows that Kant’s transcendentalism includes unexploited means for breaking down the Cartesian vestiges still operative in much contemporary philosophy of mind.

Furthermore, Sara Heinämaa argues in her “Selfhood, Consciousness and Embodiment” that Husserl’s phenomenology includes a viable non-Cartesian account of the transcendental conditions of selfhood, personhood and personal existence. As has been pointed out already, several philosophers agree that we cannot think of conscious subjects in the same way as objects. This argument occurs in many different variations in the twentieth century, but the basic idea refers back to the works of Kierkegaard, the German Idealists, Hegel and Kant.

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