Willem A. deVries University of New Hampshire, Durham
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About me
What would you like to know? I'm principally interested in the mind and its relation to the world, and I find a tradition that extends from Kant through Hegel and Peirce to Sellars the most fruitful context in which to think about these issues.
My works
36 items found.
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  1. Willem A. Devries (2013). All in the Family. In Dan Ryder, Justine Kingsbury & Kenneth Williford (eds.), Millikan and Her Critics. John Wiley & Sons. 259--280.
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  2. Willem deVries (2012). Ontology and the Completeness of Sellars’s Two Images. Humana.Mente - Journal of Philosophical Studies 21:1-18.
    Sellars claims completeness for both the “manifest” and the “scientific images” in a way that tempts one to assume that they are independent of each other, while, in fact, they must share at least one common element: the language of individual and community intentions. I argue that this significantly muddies the waters concerning his claim of ontological primacy for the scientific image, though not in favor of the ontological primacy of the manifest image. The lesson I draw is that we (...)
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  3. Willem deVries, WSS Interview #1: Willem deVries. Wilfrid Sellars Society Interviews.
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  4. Willem A. deVries, Sellars, Realism, and Kantian Thinking. Normative Functionalism and the Pittsburgh School.
    This essay is a response to Patrick Reider’s essay “Sellars on Perception, Science and Realism: A Critical Response.” Reider is correct that Sellars’s realism is in tension with his generally Kantian approach to issues of knowledge and mind, but I do not think Reider’s analysis correctly locates the sources of that tension or how Sellars himself hoped to be able to resolve it. Reider’s own account of idealism and the reasons supporting it are rooted in the epistemological tradition that informed (...)
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  5. Willem deVries, Wilfrid Sellars. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Overview of Wilfrid Sellars's philosophy.
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  6. Willem deVries (2011). Sellars Vs. McDowell on the Structure of Sensory Consciousness. Diametros 27 (27):47-63.
    I argue that John McDowell’s attempt to refute Wilfrid Sellars’s two-component analysis of perceptual experience and substitute for it a conception according to which perceptual experience is the “conceptual shaping of sensory consciousness” fails. McDowell does not recognize the subtle dialectic in Sellars’s thought between transcendental and empirical considerations in favor of a substantive conception of sense impressions, and McDowell’s own proposal seems to empty the notion of sensory consciousness of any real significance.
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  7. Willem A. deVries (2011). Naturalism, the Autonomy of Reason, and Pictures. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 18 (3):395-413.
    Sellars was committed to the irreducibility of the semantic, the intentional, and the normative. Nevertheless, he was also committed to naturalism, which is prima facie at odds with his other theses. This paper argues that Sellars maintained his naturalism by being linguistically pluralistic but ontologically monistic . There are irreducibly distinct forms of discourse, because there is an array of distinguishable functions that language and thought perform, but we are not ontologically committed to the array of apparently non-natural entities or (...)
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  8. Willem A. deVries (2011). Sellars and the Myth of the Given. In Michael Bruce & Steven Barbone (eds.), Just the Arguments: 100 of the Most Important Arguments in Western Philosophy. Wiley-Blackwell.
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  9. Willem A. deVries (2011). Sellars' "Rylean Myth". In Michael Bruce & Steven Barbone (eds.), Just the Arguments: 100 of the Most Important Arguments in Western Philosophy. Wiley-Blackwell.
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  10. Willem deVries (2010). Kant, Rosenberg, and the Mirror of Philosophy. In James O'Shea & Eric Rubenstein (eds.), Self, Language, and World: Problems from Kant, Sellars, and Rosenberg. Ridgeview.
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  11. Willem A. DeVries (ed.) (2009). Empiricism, Perceptual Knowledge, Normativity, and Realism: Essays on Wilfrid Sellars. Oxford University Press.
    The ten essays in this collection were written to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the lectures which became Wilfrid Sellars's Empiricism and the Philosophy of ...
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  12. Willem A. deVries (2009). Getting Beyond Idealisms. In Willem A. DeVries (ed.), Empiricism, Perceptual Knowledge, Normativity, and Realism: Essays on Wilfrid Sellars. Oxford University Press.
    This paper investigates Sellars's complex attitude towards idealism. It distinguishes between the epistemologically-based arguments that led many empiricists to idealism and a different set of more purely metaphysical arguments that came to dominate in German Idealism. Sellars resolutely rejects all of the epistemological arguments for idealism, but shows much greater sympathy with the metaphysical arguments. It is then argued that Sellars introduced his notion of picturing to avoid falling into such an idealism.
     
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  13. Willem A. deVries (2009). Review: McDowell, The Engaged Intellect: Philosophical Essays and Having the World in View: Essays on Kant, Hegel, and Sellars. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2009 (8).
  14. Willem A. deVries & Paul Coates (2009). Brandom's Two-Ply Error. In Willem A. DeVries (ed.), Empiricism, Perceptual Knowledge, Normativity, and Realism: Essays on Wilfrid Sellars. Oxford University Press.
    Robert Brandom makes several mistakes in his discussion of Sellars's "Two-Ply" account of observation. Brandom does not recognize the difference in "level" between observation reports concerning physical objects and 'looks'-statements. He also denies that 'looks'-statements are reports or even make claims. They then demonstrate a more correct reading of Sellars on 'looks'-statements.
     
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  15. Willem A. deVries (2008). In the Space of Reasons. Review of Metaphysics 61 (4):860-862.
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  16. Willem A. deVries (2008). Review of Jay F. Rosenberg, Wilfrid Sellars: Fusing the Images. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2008 (6).
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  17. Willem A. deVries (2008). Review of Paul Redding, Analytic Philosophy and the Return of Hegelian Thought. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2008 (4).
  18. Willem A. Devries (2008). Sense-Certainty and the 'This-Such'. In Dean Moyar & Michael Quante (eds.), Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit: A Critical Guide. Cambridge University Press.
    This article shows how Hegel's 'Sense-Certainty' chapter fills in a gap in Kant's and Sellars's critique of empiricism by supplying an argument that even indexical reference presupposes and is mediated by a larger conceptual framework.
     
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  19. Timm Triplett & Willem A. deVries (2007). Does Observational Knowledge Require Metaknowledge? A Dialogue on Sellars. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 15 (1):23 – 51.
    In the following dialogue between TT - a foundationalist - and WdeV - a Sellarsian, we offer our differing assessments of the principle for observational knowledge proposed in Wilfrid Sellars's 'Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind'. Sellars writes: 'For a Konstatierung "This is green" to "express observational knowledge", not only must it be a symptom or sign of the presence of a green object in standard conditions, but the perceiver must know that tokens of "This is green" are symptoms of (...)
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  20. Willem DeVries (2006). Folk Psychology, Theories, and the Sellarsian Roots. In Michael P. Wolf (ed.), The Self-Correcting Enterprise: Essays on Wilfrid Sellars (Poznan Studies in the Philosophy of the Sciences and the Humanities, Volume 9. Rodopi. 53-84.
    Wilfrid Sellars has often be proclaimed the father of the "theory theory" of psychological knowledge. This article exposes what is true and and what is false in this claim.
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  21. Willem A. deVries (2006). Hegel's Concept of Action, by Michael Quante. [REVIEW] The Owl of Minerva 38 (1-2):190-194.
  22. Willem A. deVries (2006). McDowell, Sellars, and Sense Impressions. European Journal of Philosophy 14 (2):182–201.
  23. Willem deVries & Timm Triplett (2006). Is Sellars'a Rylean Hypothesis Plausible? A Dialogue. In The Self-Correcting Enterprise: Essays on Wilfrid Sellars. 85-114.
    A dialogue between someone who finds Sellars's Rylean myth in "Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind" quite implausible and another who defends it.
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  24. Timm Triplett & Willem A. DeVries (2006). Is Sellars's Rylean Hypothesis Plausible? A Dialogue. In Michael P. Wolf & Mark Norris Lance (eds.), The Self-Correcting Enterprise: Essays on Wilfrid Sellars. Rodopi. 85-114.
    A dialogue between someone who finds Sellars's Rylean myth in "Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind" quite implausible and another who defends it.
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  25. Willem A. deVries (2005). Wilfrid Sellars. Acumen/McGill-Queens University Press.
    This is a critical survey of Wilfrid Sellars's philosophy.
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  26. Willem A. deVries & Timm Triplett (2000). Knowledge, Mind, and the Given: A Reading of Sellars’ “Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind”. Hackett.
    This is a careful explication of and commentary on Wilfrid Sellars's classic essay "Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind" [EPM]. It is appropriate for upper-level undergraduates and beyond. The full text of EPM is included in the volume.
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  27. Willem A. DeVries (1993). Who Sees with Equal Eye,... Atoms or Systems Into Ruin Hurl'd? Philosophical Studies 71 (2):191-200.
    A comment the paper by Brian McLaughlin in the same volume, this paper raises questions about whether the classicism/connectionism debate is really well-formed.
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  28. Willem deVries (1992). The Metaphysics of Mind. Idealistic Studies 22 (3):236-238.
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  29. Willem A. deVries (1991). The Dialectic of Teleology. Philosophical Topics 19 (2):51-70.
  30. Willem A. deVries (1991). The Dialectic of Teleology. Philosophical Topics 19 (2):51-70.
    An analysis of Hegel's chapter on teleology in the Science of Logic. Hegel argues that the 'intentional model' of teleology assumed by Kant actually presupposes a natural or organic teleology more like along Aristotelian lines.
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  31. Willem A. deVries (1990). Burgeoning Skepticism. Erkenntnis 33 (2):141-164.
    This paper shows that the resources mobilized by recent arguments against individualism in the philosophy of mind also suffice to construct a good argument against a Humean-style skepticism about our knowledge of extra-mental reality. The argument constructed, however, will not suffice to lay to rest the attacks of a truly global skeptic who rejects the idea that we usually know what our occurrent mental states are.
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  32. Willem A. DeVries (1988). Hegel on Reference and Knowledge. Journal of the History of Philosophy 26 (2):297-307.
    A refutation of claims by, e.g., Hamlyn or Soll, that Hegel denies our ability to refer to or knowledge individual objects.
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  33. Willem A. DeVries (1988). Hegel's Theory of Mental Activity: An Introduction to Theoretical Spirit. Cornell University Press.
    An interpretation of Hegel's Philosophy of Subjective Spirit showing its continued relevance to contemporary issues in the philosophy of mind.
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  34. Willem A. deVries (1988). On Sophist 255b-E. History of Philosophy Quarterly 5 (4):385-394.
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  35. Willem A. deVries (1987). Hegel on Representation and Thought. Idealistic Studies 17 (2):123-132.
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  36. Willem deVries, Sellars, Animals, and Thought. Problems From Sellars.
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