Diachronically Unified Consciousness in Augustine and Aquinas

Vivarium 50 (3-4):354-381 (2012)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Medieval accounts of diachronically unified consciousness have been overlooked by contemporary readers, because medieval thinkers have a unique and unexpected way of setting up the problem. This paper examines the approach to diachronically unified consciousness that is found in Augustine’s and Aquinas’s treatments of memory. For Augustine, although the mind is “distended” by time, it remains resilient, stretching across disparate moments to unify past, present, and future in a single personal present. Despite deceptively different phrasing, Aquinas develops a remarkably similar view when, in order to accommodate Aristotle’s view of memory to Augustine’s, he insists that an implicit self-awareness “time-stamps” all intellectual acts. According to their shared approach, diachronic unified consciousness is the result of the curious way in which the mind is both drawn into and transcends the temporal succession of its own acts.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Upload history
Archival date: 2013-08-27
View other versions
Added to PP index

Total views
809 ( #6,666 of 64,134 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
22 ( #30,302 of 64,134 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.