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Chapter 3 - Attention, Perception, Experience

from Part I - Reflection

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 April 2018

Melissa Merritt
Affiliation:
University of New South Wales, Sydney
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Summary

My aim in this chapter is to explain how the (in some sense) passive exercise of cognitive capacities in sensible experience should in principle be no less the expression of the self-determination proper to a rational mind than overt efforts of deliberation and inquiry. To do this, we need to understand the agency that is engaged in sensible experience. By drawing jointly on the Critique of Pure Reason and the Anthropology, I argue that experience, by Kant’s lights, requires attention; that directed attention is the most basic engagement of the agency we need to have over own minds in order to be knowers at all; and that this agency is realised through taking on the basic epistemic commitments proper to healthy understanding.
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2018

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