Brentano and the Direct Attribution Theory

Brentano Studien 1:189-197 (1988)

Abstract
According to Brentano, what is characteristic of every mental act is the reference to something as an object. The exact nature of an object of our mental acts has, however, been first the subject of steady discussion in Brentano's writings and consecutively gave rise to controversy for contemporary philosophers of mind; e.g. Chisholm, Castañeda. What follows is an elucidation of the relationship between Brentano's final theory of sensation and its interpretation in Chisholm's Direct Attribution theory as a consideration of a recent challenge by Castañeda: that while the Brentanian-Chisholmian account is exemplary in dealing with tacit self-reference at the level of unreflective consciousness, this theory needs to be developed even further to be adequate to those cases of self-reference involved in reflective consciousness.
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