The Mind’s Presence to Itself: In Search of Non‐intentional Awareness

Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 104 (3):659-675 (2021)
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According to some philosophers, the mind enjoys a form of presence to itself. That is to say, in addition to being aware of whatever objects it is aware of, it is also (co-presently) aware of itself. This paper explores the proposal that we should think about this kind of experiential-presence in terms of a form of non-intentional awareness. Various candidates for the relevant form of awareness, as constituting supposed non-intentional experiential-presence, are considered and are shown to encounter significant problems. The fact that a plausible account of the non-intentional awareness which experience putatively has of itself cannot be framed with reference to such forms of awareness is grounds for scepticism concerning the cogency of non-intentional experiential presence.

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Jonathan Mitchell
Cardiff University


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