Non-Conceptual Content and the Subjectivity of Consciousness

International Journal of Philosophical Studies 19 (3):491 - 520 (2011)
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Abstract The subjectivity of conscious experience is a central feature of our mental life that puzzles philosophers of mind. Conscious mental representations are presented to me as mine, others remain unconscious. How can we make sense of the difference between them? Some representationalists (e.g. Tye) attempt to explain it in terms of non-conceptual intentional content, i.e. content for which one need not possess the relevant concept required in order to describe it. Hanna claims that Kant purports to explain the subjectivity of conscious experience in this way. This paper examines this claim in some detail in the context of a more general criticism of this kind of attempt to explain subjectivity and proposes a different reading of Kant that also leads to an alternative account of subjectivity independent from content

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Tobias Schlicht
Ruhr-Universit├Ąt Bochum


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