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The Reflexivity of Incorporeal Acts as Source of Freedom and Subjectivity in Aquinas

  • Therese Scarpelli CoryEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Studies in the History of Philosophy of Mind book series (SHPM, volume 16)

Abstract

Although Aquinas is often believed to approach the human person from a purely metaphysical perspective, I argue that he actually has a keen awareness of the phenomena associated with subjectivity. I propose that in his theory of reflexivity as a metaphysical property of incorporeal beings and the necessary condition for self-awareness and free judgment, we can find his efforts to accommodate the experience of the human being as self or subject. The paper begins by examining what it means to be reflexive for Aquinas, and why he thinks something is completely reflexive if and only if it is incorporeal (the Reflexivity Premise). It then studies how reflexivity affects the “self-possessed” character of our experience, in implicit self-awareness and the freedom of our judgments about what is to be done.

Keywords

Alternative Possibility Human Subjectivity Proper Object Practical Judgment Corporeal Organ 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Notre Dame UniversityNotre DameUSA

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