Augustine on Active Perception, Awareness, and Representation

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It is widely thought that Augustine thinks perception is, in some distinctive sense, an active process and that he takes conscious awareness to be constitutive of perception. I argue that conscious awareness is not straightforwardly constitutive of perception and that Augustine is best understood as an indirect realist. I then clarify Augustine’s views concerning the nature and role of diachronically unified conscious awareness and mental representation in perception, the nature of the soul’s intentio, and the precise sense(s) in which perception is an active process.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-110
Number of pages27
Issue number1
Early online date23-Dec-2020
Publication statusPublished - Feb-2021


  • Augustine
  • perceptual experience
  • consciousness
  • mental representation
  • memory

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