Précis of Brentano’s Philosophical System


Authors
Uriah Kriegel
Institut Jean Nicod
Abstract
Here is a rather difficult two-part question: How may we grasp (a) the nature of reality and (b) the nature of value? As I understand the man, answering this question was the principal, overarching aim of Franz Brentano’s philosophical work. More specifically, he wanted to provide an answer that respected a self-imposed theoretical constraint, namely, that our grasp of a thing’s status as real or as valuable be ultimately grounded in direct encounter with certain aspects of our conscious experience. The purpose of my book Brentano’s Philosophical System: Mind, Being, Value (henceforth, BPS) is to reconstruct Brentano’s attempt to answer his question, present a partial defense of the answer, offer some potential improvements on it, and also point to persistent difficulties it faces. Here I (a) speed-explain Brentano’s self-imposed constraint and its motivation, (b) reconstruct Brentano’s account of the real in light of it, and (c) reconstruct Brentano’s corresponding account of the valuable. These three tasks correspond roughly to BPS’s three parts: ‘Mind,’ ‘Being,’ and ‘Value.’
Keywords Brentano  fitting attitude  reality  value  philosophical system
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