History of Philosophy Works-in-Progress Luncheon: Therese Cory, "Aquinas and Freud: Imagination and the Unconscious"


Location: Maritain Library (437 Geddes Hall) (View on map.nd.edu)

Please join us for the first History of Philosophy Works-in-Progress Luncheon of the fall semester! Our presenter is Prof. Therese Cory, who will speak on "Aquinas and Freud: Imagination and the Unconscious."

Each meeting consists of a presentation by a graduate student or faculty member on a project that they are working on in the history of philosophy, followed by a period of comments/questions from other participants. The workshop is designed to give contributors the opportunity to develop ideas and receive helpful feedback on projects/papers in a friendly and low stakes environment. 

Lunch is provided for registered attendees. Sign up here!

Abstract: This paper considers the case of “hidden motivations,” in which one could make sense of a certain human behavior if the agent had a certain motive—but the agent claims that she does not have that motive, and even when she reflects, she simply cannot discover within herself, from a first-person perspective, any sort of corresponding desire or belief. Freud drew our cultural attention to these cases, which he attributed to the Unconscious. But can these cases be accounted for without recourse to an Unconscious? In this paper, I consider a thinker who holds that all occurrent mental states are conscious, Thomas Aquinas. Some of his intriguing and neglected remarks about imagination, I suggest, can provide resources for analyzing the phenomenon of hidden motivation.

Originally published at historyofphilosophy.nd.edu.