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Véronique Decaix: On categorical constitution

Dietrich of Freiberg

Lecture by Véronique Decaix (Paris) organized by the Department of the History of Philosophy

Kant was not the first philosopher to recognise the role of subjectivity in the constitution of the object of human knowledge. In fact, Dietrich of Freiberg (1250-1310), an important medieval thinker, can be seen as a precursor of such recognition.

A main purpose of his De origine rerum praedicamentalium is to highlight the constitutive role of human mind, Dietrich’s thought has been interpreted as a pre-Copernican turn in the Middle Ages. In this talk, I shall focus on the soul’s constitutive function as regards the categories – the real genera of being. I intend to discuss the transcendental-idealist flavour of Dietrich’s theory from two perspectives: From a historical perspective, I will show that his division of being draws on former accounts on the categories, e.g. by Thomas Aquinas, Albert the Great and Henry of Ghent. From a doctrinal perspective, I shall argue that the intellectual constitution of categories is compatible with a (strong) metaphysical realism.

Véronique Decaix

Véronique Decaix received her PhD in 2013 with a thesis on Dietrich of Freiberg’s theory of intentionality. She is currently a Researcher in the project “Representation and Reality” (University of Gothenburg) and an Associate Professor in Medieval Philosophy at the University Paris 1, Panthéon-Sorbonne. Her research interests lie in Medieval philosophy, particularly in Psychology and Metaphysics, with a focus on intentionality in cognitive embodied processes such as sensation, memory, dreaming and self-motion.

When & where?

Thursday, October 29, 2015, 3.15 - 5 pm
Faculty of Philosophy, Room Alfa

Last modified:12 October 2015 09.52 a.m.