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Title: Mental Gaze and Presence
Subtitle: Hervaeus Natalis, Peter Auriol, and John Buridan on Objects of Cognition
Author(s): KLEIN, Martin
Journal: Recherches de Théologie et Philosophie Médiévales
Volume: 87    Issue: 2   Date: 2020   
Pages: 371-392
DOI: 10.2143/RTPM.87.2.3289009

Abstract :
In fourteenth-century scholasticism, one frequently finds the claim that a crucial characteristic of cognition is the object’s being or appearing in the gaze of the cognizer (esse in prospectu cognoscentis). But what is the nature of the object as it appears in the gaze? And what sorts of cognition involve a mental gaze and how does it come about? This paper describes how the explanatory function of the mental gaze varied significantly in the fourteenth century, and how the meaning of the presence of the object of cognition was reversed completely from Hervaeus Natalis through Peter Auriol and on to John Buridan: from universal cognition of an intramental object to singular cognition of an extramental object.

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