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Profile: Carl Sachs (University of Alabama, Birmingham)
Profile: Carl Sachs
  1. Carl B. Sachs (2014). Discursive and Somatic Intentionality: Merleau-Ponty Contra 'McDowell or Sellars'. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 22 (2):199-227.
    Here I show that Sellars’ radicalization of the Kantian distinction between concepts and intuitions is vulnerable to a challenge grounded in Merleau-Ponty’s phenomenology of embodiment. Sellars argues that Kant’s concept of ‘intuition’ is ambiguous between singular demonstrative phrases and sense-impressions. In light of the critique of the Myth of the Given, Sellars argues, in the ‘Myth of Jones’, that sense-impression are theoretical posits. I argue that Merleau-Ponty offers a way of understanding perceptual activity which successfully avoids both the Myth of (...)
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  2. Carl B. Sachs (2013). Rorty's Debt to Sellarsian Metaphysics. Metaphilosophy 44 (5):682-707.
    Rorty regards himself as furthering the project of the Enlightenment by separating Enlightenment liberalism from Enlightenment rationalism. To do so, he rejects the very need for explicit metaphysical theorizing. Yet his commitments to naturalism, nominalism, and the irreducibility of the normative come from the metaphysics of Wilfrid Sellars. Rorty's debt to Sellars is concealed by his use of Davidsonian arguments against the scheme/content distinction and the nonsemantic concept of truth. The Davidsonian arguments are used for Deweyan ends: to advance secularization (...)
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  3. Carl B. Sachs (2012). Resisting the Disenchantment of Nature: McDowell and the Question of Animal Minds. Inquiry 55 (2):131-147.
    Abstract McDowell's contributions to epistemology and philosophy of mind turn centrally on his defense of the Aristotelian concept of a ?rational animal?. I argue here that a clarification of how McDowell uses this concept can make more explicit his distance from Davidson regarding the nature of the minds of non-rational animals. Close examination of his responses to Davidson and to Dennett shows that McDowell is implicitly committed to avoiding the following ?false trichotomy?: that animals are not bearers of semantic content (...)
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  4. Carl B. Sachs (2011). The Shape of a Good Question: McDowell, Evolution, and Transcendental Philosophy. Philosophical Forum 42 (1):61-78.
    I examine John McDowell's attitude towards naturalism in general, and evolutionary theory in particular, by distinguishing between "transcendental descriptions" and "empirical explanations". With this distinction in view we can understand why McDowell holds that there is both continuity and discontinuity between humans qua rational animals and other animals -- there is continuity with regards to empirical explanations and discontinuity with regards to transcendental descriptions. The result of this examination is a clearer assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of McDowell's contribution (...)
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  5. Carl B. Sachs (2008). Nietzsche's Daybreak. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy 13 (1):81-100.
    Any interpretation of Nietzsche’s criticisms of morality must show whether or not Nietzsche is entitled both to deny free will and to be concerned with furtheringhuman freedom. Here I will show that Nietzsche is entitled to both claims if his theory of freedom is set in the context of a naturalistic drive-psychology. The drive-psychology allows Nietzsche to develop a modified but recognizable account of freedom as autonomy. I situate this development in Nietzsche’s thought through a close reading of Daybreak (Morgenröte). (...)
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  6. Carl B. Sachs (2007). Adorno: The Recovery of Experience (Review). Journal of Speculative Philosophy 21 (4):330-332.
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