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In the Light of ExperienceNew Essays on Perception and Reasons$
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Johan Gersel, Rasmus Thybo Jensen, Morten S. Thaning, and Søren Overgaard

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198809630

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198809630.001.0001

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Travis on Frege, Kant, and the Given

Travis on Frege, Kant, and the Given

Comments on ‘Unlocking the Outer World’1

Chapter:
(p.23) 1 Travis on Frege, Kant, and the Given
Source:
In the Light of Experience
Author(s):

John McDowell

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198809630.003.0003

Travis thinks my view that there is a myth, the Myth of the Given, to be avoided is based on a conception that would entail that our conceptual capacities cannot make contact with the non-conceptual. I explain why he is mistaken. I explain why he is wrong to connect the supposed Myth with an idea he finds in Kant, the idea that there must be a match in form between our thoughts and what we think about. I take issue with his suggestion that something fundamental to Kant is contradicted by Frege’s insistence that thoughts are not put together out of self-standing building-blocks. And I argue that he misreads Frege about how something non-sensible ‘unlocks the outer world’ for us, about the relation between the conceptual and the non-conceptual, and about the possibility of conceiving thoughts as, not objects, but contents of sensory consciousness.

Keywords:   Charles Travis, conceptual and non-conceptual, Kant, Frege, Myth of the Given, thoughts

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