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Colin McLear
University of Nebraska, Lincoln
  1. Kant on Perceptual Content.Colin McLear - 2016 - Mind 125 (497):95-144.
    Call the idea that states of perceptual awareness have intentional content, and in virtue of that aim at or represent ways the world might be, the ‘Content View.’ I argue that though Kant is widely interpreted as endorsing the Content View there are significant problems for any such interpretation. I further argue that given the problems associated with attributing the Content View to Kant, interpreters should instead consider him as endorsing a form of acquaintance theory. Though perceptual acquaintance is controversial (...)
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  2. Two Kinds of Unity in the Critique of Pure Reason.Colin McLear - 2015 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 53 (1):79-110.
    I argue that Kant’s distinction between the cognitive roles of sensibility and understanding raises a question concerning the conditions necessary for objective representation. I distinguish two opposing interpretive positions—viz. Intellectualism and Sensibilism. According to Intellectualism all objective representation depends, at least in part, on the unifying synthetic activity of the mind. In contrast, Sensibilism argues that at least some forms of objective representation, specifically intuitions, do not require synthesis. I argue that there are deep reasons for thinking that Intellectualism is (...)
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  3. The Kantian (Non)‐Conceptualism Debate.Colin McLear - 2014 - Philosophy Compass 9 (11):769-790.
    One of the central debates in contemporary Kant scholarship concerns whether Kant endorses a “conceptualist” account of the nature of sensory experience. Understanding the debate is crucial for getting a full grasp of Kant's theory of mind, cognition, perception, and epistemology. This paper situates the debate in the context of Kant's broader theory of cognition and surveys some of the major arguments for conceptualist and non-conceptualist interpretations of his critical philosophy.
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  4. Kant on Animal Consciousness.Colin McLear - 2011 - Philosophers' Imprint 11.
    Kant is often considered to have argued that perceptual awareness of objects in one's environment depends on the subject's possession of conceptual capacities. This conceptualist interpretation raises an immediate problem concerning the nature of perceptual awareness in non-rational, non-concept using animals. In this paper I argue that Kant’s claims concerning animal representation and consciousness do not foreclose the possibility of attributing to animals the capacity for objective perceptual consciousness, and that a non-conceptualist interpretation of Kant’s position concerning perceptual awareness can (...)
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  5. On the Transcendental Freedom of the Intellect.Colin McLear - 2020 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 7 (2):35-104.
    Kant holds that the applicability of the moral ‘ought’ depends on a kind of agent-causal freedom that is incompatible with the deterministic structure of phenomenal nature. I argue that Kant understands this determinism to threaten not just morality but the very possibility of our status as rational beings. Rational beings exemplify “cognitive control” in all of their actions, including not just rational willing and the formation of doxastic attitudes, but also more basic cognitive acts such as judging, conceptualizing, and synthesizing.
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  6. “I Am the Original of All Objects”: Apperception and the Substantial Subject.Colin McLear - 2020 - Philosophers' Imprint 20 (26):1-38.
    Kant’s conception of the centrality of intellectual self-consciousness, or “pure apperception”, for scientific knowledge of nature is well known, if still obscure. Here I argue that, for Kant, at least one central role for such self-consciousness lies in the acquisition of the content of concepts central to metaphysical theorizing. I focus on one important concept, that of <substance>. I argue that, for Kant, the representational content of the concept <substance> depends not just on the capacity for apperception, but on the (...)
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  7. Intuition and Presence.Colin McLear - 2017 - In Andrew Stephenson & Anil Gomes (eds.), Kant and the Mind. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 86-103.
    In this paper I explicate the notion of “presence” [Gegenwart] as it pertains to intuition. Specifically, I examine two central problems for the position that an empirical intuition is an immediate relation to an existing particular in one’s environment. The first stems from Kant’s description of the faculty of imagination, while the second stems from Kant’s discussion of hallucination. I shall suggest that Kant’s writings indicate at least one possible means of reconciling our two problems with a conception of “presence” (...)
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  8. The Mind's "I". [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2019 - European Journal of Philosophy 27 (1):255-265.
  9. Getting Acquainted with Kant.Colin McLear - 2016 - In Dennis Schulting (ed.), Kantian Nonconceptualism. London: Palgrave-Macmillan. pp. 171-97.
    My question here concerns whether Kant claims that experience has nonconceptual content, or whether, on his view, experience is essentially conceptual. However there is a sense in which this debate concerning the content of intuition is ill-conceived. Part of this has to do with the terms in which the debate is set, and part to do with confusion over the connection between Kant’s own views and contemporary concerns in epistemology and the philosophy of mind. However, I think much of the (...)
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  10. Comments on Stefanie Grüne's *Blinde Anschauung*. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2014 - Critique.
  11. Motion and the Affection Argument.Colin McLear - 2018 - Synthese 195 (11):4979-4995.
    In the Metaphysical Foundations of Natural Science, Kant presents an argument for the centrality of <motion> to our concept <matter>. This argument has long been considered either irredeemably obscure or otherwise defective. In this paper I provide an interpretation which defends the argument’s validity and clarifies the sense in which it aims to show that <motion> is fundamental to our conception of matter.
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  12. Kant: Philosophy of Mind.Colin McLear - 2015 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Kant: Philosophy of Mind Immanuel Kant was one of the most important philosophers of the Enlightenment Period in Western European history. This encyclopedia article focuses on Kant’s views in the philosophy of mind, which undergird much of his epistemology and metaphysics. In particular, it focuses on metaphysical and epistemological doctrines forming the … Continue reading Kant: Philosophy of Mind →.
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  13. Three Skeptics and the Critique: Review of Michael Forster's Kant and Skepticism.Andrew Chignell & Colin Mclear - 2010 - Philosophical Books 51 (4):228-244.
    A long critical notice of Michael Forster's recent book, "Kant and Skepticism." We argue that Forster's characterization of Kant's response to skepticism is both textually dubious and philosophically flawed. -/- .
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  14. Animals and Objectivity.Colin McLear - 2020 - In Lucy Allais & John Callanan (eds.), Kant and Animals. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 42-65.
    Starting from the assumption that Kant allows for the possible existence of conscious sensory states in non-rational animals, I examine the textual and philosophical grounds for his acceptance of the possibility that such states are also 'objective'. I elucidate different senses of what might be meant in crediting a cognitive state as objective. I then put forward and defend an interpretation according to which the cognitive states of animals, though extremely limited on Kant's view, are nevertheless minimally objective.
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  15. Kant and the Demands of Reflection. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2019 - SGIR Review 2 (1):42-59.
    From an author meets critics session on Melissa Merritt's *Kant on Reflection and Virtue*.
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  16. Brandom, Robert. From Empiricism to Expressivism: Brandom Reads Sellars.Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2015. Pp. 289. $35.00. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2016 - Ethics 126 (3):808-816.
    One of the better known of the many bons mots of the Sellarsian corpus concerns his definition of philosophy: it is the attempt to understand “how things in the broadest possible sense of the term hang together in the broadest possible sense of the term.” When applied to Sellars’s philosophy in particular, one might be forgiven for doubting the possible success of such an endeavor. Richard Rorty once quipped of Sellars’s followers that they were either “left-wing” or “right-wing,” emphasizing one (...)
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  17. Comments on Lucy Allais, Manifest Reality. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2016 - Critique.
    Extended critical discussion of Lucy Allais, *Manifest Reality*.
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  18. Fellow Creatures, by Christine Korsgaard. Oxford University Press, 2018. ISBN 0198753853. 272 Pp. $24.95. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2020 - European Journal of Philosophy 28 (1):258-262.
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    Kantian Conceptualism/Nonconceptualism.Colin McLear - 2020 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Overview of the (non)conceptualism debate in Kant studies.
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  20. Nicholas Stang, Kant's Modal Metaphysics. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2018 - Philosophical Review 127 (4):523-528.
  21. Kant's Transcendental Deduction: An Analytical‐Historical Commentary, by Henry Allison. Oxford University Press, 2015, 496 Pp. ISBN 13: 978‐0‐19‐872485‐8 Hb £75.00. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2017 - European Journal of Philosophy 25 (2):546-554.
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    Review of Lanier Anderson, The Poverty of Conceptual Truth. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2015 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews.
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    Waxman on Intuition and Apperception. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2018 - Critique:NA.
    A critical discussion of Waxman's recent book, Kant's Anatomy of the Intelligent Mind.
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