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Intentionality Bifurcated: A Lesson from Early Modern Philosophy?

  • Lionel Shapiro
Chapter
Part of the Studies in History and Philosophy of Science book series (AUST, volume 29)

Abstract

This paper examines the pressures leading two very different Early Modern philosophers, Descartes and Locke, to invoke two ways in which thought is directed at objects. According to both philosophers, I argue, the same idea can simultaneously count as “of” two different objects—in two different senses of the phrase ‘idea of’. One kind of intentional directedness is invoked in answering the question What is it to think that thus-and-so? The other kind is invoked in answering the question What accounts for the success of our proper methods of inquiry? For Descartes as well as Locke, the two kinds of “ofness” come apart as a result of strong rationalist commitments. However, I will suggest that even if we reject such commitments, we go wrong if we assume that a single kind of intentional directedness suffices to address both questions.

Keywords

Natural Kind Complex Idea Rational Reflection Distinct Idea Real Essence 
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 Science+Business Media Dordecht. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Philosophy DepartmentUniversity of ConnecticutStorrsUSA

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