2011-2016: Brentano's Psychology and the Problem of Intentionality of Sensuous Acts

Project Development

YEAR 2016 (jan. – sept.)

 

  • In 2016 Ion Tănăsescu has written the liaison chapters of his book Seiendes, Empfindung, Phantasie: the chapter on Brentano’s thesis and the catholic science as a link between the section devoted to the polysemy of being in Brentano’s thesis and that devoted to his psychology, the chapter on the role of association in Brentano’s descriptive psychology and his view on fantasy presentation, and the chapter on the criticism on Johannes Müller’s associationism and his view on fantasy presentation. Moreover, the work was rounded off, and it was also updated by addressing the most recent works on the topic.
  • Oana Vasilescu pursued the contemporary debate on the significance nowadays of Brentano’s thought, and updated the bibliography on the topics addressed in the project.

FUNDING: 137.657,62 lei

SUMMARY:

  • Completing the book Seiendes, Empfindung, Phantasie;
  • Attending an international conference.
RESEARCH TOPICS
  • Ion Tănăsescu: Completing the book Seiendes, Empfindung, Phantasie;
  • Oana Vasilescu: Investigating some items of the contemporary reception of Brentano’s thought.

 

YEAR 2015

Scientific Report

  • In 2015 Ion Tănăsescu has analyzed the topic of abstract presentation in comparison with sensory presentation in Brentano’s early writings. The analysis has focused on how the intentional relation of these two presentations may be described. The outcome of this research consists of the following thesis: unlike sensory presentation whose intentional relation consists in the mere containing of a certain physical phenomenon, abstract presentations are characterized by a relation to the immanent object that is distinctive from the mere intentional containing, and may be described as orientation of the act of abstract presentation towards the immanent object, i.e., towards its intrinsic significance.
  • The result of this investigation consisted in a considerable development of the parts devoted to abstract presentation from the next two studies:
    • Ion Tănăsescu, A problem of the intentional relation of presentation in Brentano’s empirical psychology, in Tijdschrift voor Filosofie, 77/2015,p. 251-271 (ISI);
    • Ion Tănăsescu, The two Theories of Intentionality in Brentano 
and the Program of Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint, in Wilhelm Baumgartner, Guillaume Fréchette (eds.), Brentano’s Concept of Intentionality. New Assessments (Brentano Studien, Bd. 13 (2015)), J. H. Röll Verlag, 2015, p. 211-231.
  • Starting from this, the role of abstract presentation and of sensory presentation within the program of Brentano’s early works (EL 80 Logik manuscript from 1869/70) and in Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint (1874) was also analyzed. Unlike EL 80, wherein abstract presentations played a significant part, in the 1874 work they are solely episodically mentioned. On the contrary, sensory presentations and the physical phenomena they contain are consistently addressed in Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint, for Brentano designs his empirical psychology through unfailing reference to natural science.
  • With respect to the issue of the four phases of philosophy in Brentano and to the distinction analytic – continental in contemporary philosophy, Oana Vasilescu has investigated, selected and translated a set of texts that are relevant for the contemporary significance of this topic. The main outcome of this research consists in a set of forthcoming texts on the issue (in Revista de filosofie nr. 6, 2015).

FUNDING: 93.105 lei

SUMMARY:

  • Publishing one article in an ISI indexed journal;
  • Publishing one article in a volume of an international conference;
  • Publishing a set of texts on Brentano’s theory on the four phases of philosophy in Revista de filosofie 6, 2015;
  • Attending 1 research stay at an European University.
RESEARCH TOPICS
  • Ion Tănăsescu: The problem of intentionality of abstract presentation in Brentano;
  • Oana Vasilescu: The four phases of philosophy in Brentano and the distinction analytic – continental in contemporary philosophy;
DISCUSSED ISSUES:
  • Logic as practical discipline and the issue of abstract presentation in Brentano;
  • The role of abstract presentation in Brentano’s empirical and descriptive psychology;
  • Brentano’s theory of the four phases of philosophy and the distinction analytic – continental in contemporary philosophy.

Year 2014

Scientific report

  • In 2014, Ion Tănăsescu explored the topic of the intentionality of sensory acts in Brentano’s psychology, namely the intentionality of sensory presentation and of fantasy presentation and the topic of the intentionality of perception. The research started from the hypothesis that in his Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint (1874) Brentano emphasizes three aspects of the distinction between the mental and the physical phenomenon:
    • the intentional inexistence or the immanence of the object in the mental act;
    • the relation to the immanent object;
    • the direction of the mental act towards an object.
  • After investigating how these features apply to the subclasses of mental acts of sensation and perception, we have reached the conclusion that sensory acts do not have the direction towards an object, we have defined two concepts of mental phenomenon in Brentano’s psychology, and we have explored how Brentano’s view on this issue had developed in his subsequent works (Deskriptive Psychologie, 1890/91 și Von der Natur der Vorstellung, 1903). The outcome of this research materialized in two papers:
    • „The Problem of the Intentional Relation of Presentation in Brentano’s Empirical Psychology” (18 p., forthcoming in 2015 in Tijdschrift voor Filosofie (ISI))
    • „The Intentionality of Sensation and the Brentanian Psychology” (25 p.; submitted for evaluation at Axiomathes (ISI))
  • With respect to the topic of fantasy presentation, Ion Tănăsescu has investigated its specific intentional relation and the role of the presentation of creative fantasy in the work of geniuses, and Oana Vasilescu (4. 04. 2014 – 31. 12. 2014) has investigated „The Topic of Fantasy in Franz Brentano”. The outcome of this research materialized in Ion Tănăsescu, Brentano on Genius and Fantasy (8 p.), paper translated into English by Oana Vasilescu, and forthcoming in U. Kriegel (ed.), Routledge Handbook of Brentano and the Brentano School, Routledge, London, 2017. This year, also have issued the following:
    • Ion Tănăsescu, „Categorial Relations as Truth-makers in Franz Brentano’s Dissertation” (Tijdschrift voor Filosofie, 76/2014, p. 247-260 (ISI))
    • The set of papers Psihologia descriptivă brentaniană (Brentano’s Descriptive Psychology) in Revista de filosofie, 2014, LXI, 4, p. 367-402 (set of papers designed by the team members Silvia-Heliana Bogdan and Oana Vasilescu, and constituted of one of Roderick M. Chisholm’s fundamental texts: „Brentano on Descriptive Psychology and the Intentional” and of other two texts devoted to Brentano’s psychology and aesthetics).
  • Also, this year Ion Tănăsescu had a research stay at the Husserl Archives, in Leuven (01. 09. – 30.09.2014). The outcomes of the project were and will be presented at the following international conferences:
    • Ion Tănăsescu, Das Programm der deskriptiven Psychologie bei Brentano und Marty, at “The Philosophy of Anton Marty“, Einsiedeln, Elvetia, 11-13. XII. 2014.
    • Ion Tănăsescu, The two Theories of Intentionality in Brentano and Chisholm’s Ontological and Psychological Theses, at “The Eighth European Congress of Analytic Philosophy“, University of Bucharest, 28. VIII- 02. IX. 2014;
    • Ion Tănăsescu, The Intentional Relation of Sensory Presentations in Brentano’s and Marty’s Descriptive Psychology, at “Mind and Language – Franz Brentano’s Legacy in Prague. Commemorating the Centenary of Anton Marty’s Death Prague”, Prague, Academy of Sciences, Vila Lanna, May 14–16, 2014;
    • Ion Tănăsescu, Brentano and Husserl on phantasy presentation, at Fictions, an international conference organized by the Faculty of Political Science, National School of Political Studies and Administration, Bucharest, 11-12 April 2014 (text translated into English by Oana Vasilescu).

FUNDING: 95.670,87 lei

Summary:

  • Publishing one article in an ISI indexed journal
  • Publishing a set of texts on Brentano’s Descriptive Psychology in Revista de filosofie, LXI, no. 4, 2014, p. 367-401
  • Attending 3 international conferences
  • Attending 1 research stay at an European University
Research topics
  • Ion Tănăsescu: The problem of intentionality of sensuous acts in Brentano;
  • Oana Vasilescu: The Topic of Fantasy in Franz Brentano (04. – 12.2014).
Discussed issues:
  • The interpretation of Brentano’s theory of intentionality from the philosophy of mind contemporary perspective;
  • Brentano’s two theories of intentionality;
  • The problem of the intentionality of sensuous acts and the criteria of mental phenomena classification;
  • Brentano’s two concepts of the mental phenomenon;
  • Brentano’s problem of  abstract presentation and fantasy presentation;
  • The problem of genre determination of mental acts.

Year 2013

Scientific Report

During 10. 2011 12. 2013 the following objectives were accomplished:

  • Ion Tănăsescu provided an interpretation to Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint that clarifies its relationship to the physiological psychology. With respect to this clarification, Brentano’s intentionality not only serves to explain how mental phenomena relate to inexistent objects, but chiefly to distinguish between the realm of physiological psychology and the realm of empirical psychology. In this context, the topic of the physical phenomenon in his 1874 paper acquires a different meaning, for the physical phenomenon appears not only as a content of the mental act of sensation, but as a research topic of the natural science.
  • Elena Băltuță (team member between 10. 2011 – 4. 2013) has highlighted the complexity of the Thomist background of Brentano’s intentionality by analyzing the issue of intentional inexistence at all the levels of the cognitive process, and showed that Thomist esse intentionale cannot be used as such as interpretative key to Brentano’s intentional object, for this object is the mark of a subject capable of knowledge, while the mere Thomist esse intentionale does not have this feature.
  • Silvia-Heliana Bogdan, team member between 05. 2013 – 12. 2013, has translated three of Roderick M. Chisholm’s studies on Brentano’s intentionality and psychology.

With respect to previous reports, in 2013 the following results were obtained:

Ion Tănăsescu:

  • The study „Das reelle und das rationelle Sein – über die mannigfache/n Bedeutung/en des Seienden bei dem jungen Brentano” (20 p.), in W. Baumgarnter, K. Hedwig (ed): Brentanos frühe Publikationen (1862–1874). Seine Quellen und die Entwicklung seiner philosophischen Positionen, Dettelbach, J. H. Röll Verlag (forthcoming);
  • The study „Categorial Relations as Truth-Makers in Franz Brentano’s Dissertation” (11 p.), (Tijdschrift voor Filosofie, Jaahrgang 2014, Nr. 3), (ISI), (forthcoming);
  • The lecture The manifold meaning of the term intentionality in Brentano’s empirical Psychology, (international conference „Consciousness and Intentionality. Franz Brentano’s Heritage in Philosophy of Mind”, University of Salzburg, 7-9 February, 2013);
  • The lecture Intenționalitate și etică la Franz Brentano (Intentionality and Ethics at Franz Brentano), at the summer school „Science, Religion, and Philosophy” (3rd edition), Department of Philosophy, University of Bucharest, September 5th 2013;

Elena Băltuţă:

Dr. Wojciech Starzyński, visiting researcher (the Polish Academy of Sciences):

  • The lecture La voie cartésienne en phénoménologie, doit-elle faire recours à l’intentionnalité? Remarques sur la position de Michel Henry et celle de Jean-Luc Marion (18, 06, 2013, Casa Lovinescu, Bucharest).

FUNDING: 110.872,38 lei

Summary:

  • Publishing an author volume on Thomas Aquinas’ intentionality;
  • Publishing one article in a ISI indexed journal’
  • Summited two articles to two ISI indexed journals’
  • Translated an article of Klaus Hedwig and three studies of Roderick M. Chisholm on Brentano;
  • Attending 1 international and 1 national conference;
  • Inviting one international esteemed phenomenological scholar to give one lecture on intentionality.
Research topics
  • Ion Tănăsescu: The Aristotelianism of young Brentano;
  • Elena Băltuţă: The Thomistic influence on Brentano’s habilitation (01.2013 – 04. 2013)
  • Silvia-Heliana Bogdan: The Problem of Intentionality in Brentano’s Empirical Psychology and its Reception by  Roderick M. Chisholm (05. 2013 – 12. 2013)
Discussed issues:
  • The Aristotelian view on truth and its interpretation in the contintental tradition and contemporary analytic philosophy: the correspondence theory of truth and the notion of truth as grasping of non-composite;
  • The problem of being in the mind and of the being outside the mind at Aristotle, in the medieval tradition and in Franz Brentano’s philosophy;
  • The third Aristotelian notion of truth in Brentano: the emphatic notion of truth and its application on the being in the mind from the dissertation;
  • The role of the being in the mind in the genesis of the notion of intentionality as can be found in the philosophy of Brentano and Husserl;
  • The notion of the fantasy presentation as can be found in Brentano’s philosophy and its Aristotelian background;
  • The contemporary interpretation of intentional inexistence in Brentano’s traditional perspective –  R. M. Chisholm’s reception of the problem of intentional inexistence.

Year 2012

Scientific report

In 2012 the following objectives were accomplished:

  • Ion Tănăsescu investigated the program of Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint (1874) in its relationship to the habilitation treatise Brentano’s The psychology of Aristotle, in particular his doctrine of the active intellect (1867); he also analysed the distinction between the genetic and descriptive psychology in the lectures on descriptive psychology (1887-1891);
  • Elena Băltuță continuated the investigation of the Thomist influence on Brentano’s dissertation with respect to the topic of being as truth and of the deduction of Aristotle’s categories, and started to explore the Thomist influence on Brentano’s view on intentionality in his work of 1874.

Our research had the following outcomes:

Ion Tănăsescu:

  • The study „Die Asymmetrie des Intentionalen bei Brentano“, (Revue Roumaine de Philosophie, 56, 1, 2012, pp. 97–112, ISI);
  • The volume Franz Brentano´s Metaphysics and Psychology. Upon the Sesquicentennial of Franz Brentano’s Dissertation (Zeta Books 2012, 513 p.; 24 issues in KVK; reviewed in Grazer Philosophische Studien (ERIH – INT2), 88, 2013);
  • „Foreword” in Franz Brentano´s Metaphysics and Psychology, pp. 7-11;
  • The study „Franz Brentano’s Dissertation and the Problem of Intentionality” in Franz Brentano´s Metaphysics and Psychology, pp. 154-179;
  • The study „Hat Aristoteles drei Auffassungen von der Wahrheit vertreten? Zu den unterschiedlichen Bedeutungen des veritativen Seienden in Brentanos Dissertation” (34 p., submitted for evaluation at Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie, ISI);
  • The lecture „Franz Brentano’s Dissertation on Aristotle and Phenomenology” (The 7th Central and Eastern European Conference on Phenomenology (CEECOP) on Phenomenology and Aristotle; St. Petersburg, Russian Federation, June 02-June 03, 2012);
  • The lecture Die Intentionalität der Empfindung bei Brentano, (Seminar of Husserl-Archief te Leuven, Leuven, Belgium, 12 September 2012);
  • The lecture Psychologie vom empirischen Standpunkte Brentanos und das Problem des Leibes, (international conference „Phénomènes psychiques et corps”, Lovinescu’s House, Bucharest,  28-29 November 2012);
  • Research stay at Husserl Archives, Leuven (01. 09. – 30.09.2012).

Elena Băltuță:

  • The study „Thomas Aquinas on Bridging the Gap between Mind and Reality”, (Revue roumaine de philosophie, 56, 1, 2012, pp. 147-161, ISI);
  • The lecture Aquinas on Intellectual Cognition: the Case of Intelligible Species (“Analytical Approaches to Thomas Aquinas”, Krakow, Poland, 26-27 May 2012);
  • The lecture Aquinas on Mental Content: the Debate between Direct Realism and Representationalism (Trinity College,  University of Cambridge, UK, 27 November 2012);
  • Research stay at the University of Konstanz, Germany (01.06. – 28.06.2012).

Johannes Brandl, Visiting Professor (University of Salzburg):

  • The lecture: The Expressivist Nature of Immediate Self-Knowledge (31.10.2012, Department of Philosophy, University of Bucharest);
  • The lecture: Brentano on the Impact of Psychology on Philosophy (01.11.2012, 2 p.m., Department of Philosophy, University of Bucharest).

Funding: 274.440,50 lei

Summary:

  • Publishing an international multi-authored volume on Brentano’s psychology and metaphysics;
  • Publishing two articles in a ISI indexed journal;
  • Attending 3 international conferences;
  • Attending 2 research stays at European universities;
  • Inviting one international esteemed Brentano scholar to give two lectures on Brentano’s psychology and intentionality.
Research topics
  • Ion Tănăsescu, project director – Empiric and descriptive in the accomplishment of the psychology as a science in Brentano;
  • Elena Băltuță, team member – The Thomistic influence on Brentano’s dissertation.
Discussed issues:
  • Brentano’s empirical psychology and the physiological or the scientific psychology;
  • The role of distinction genetic-descriptive in the descriptive psychology lectures;
  • The traditional, Aristotelian-thomistic dimension of Brentano’s psychology;
  • Thomas Aquinas’ influence on Brentano’s dissertation on the problem of being as truth and on the deduction of Aristotelian categories.

Year 2011 (oct. – dec.)

Scientific Report

During 05. 10. 2011 – 31. 12. 2011 the following objectives were accomplished:

  • There have been set out in detail the steps required in order to meet the final and the intermediate objectives at the end of 2012: rendering for publication at a prestigious publisher of a collective volume with international participation on Brentano’s metaphysics and psychology (project director), rendering for publication at a prestigious publisher of a volume devoted to Thomas Aquinas’ intentionality (team member);
  • Ion Tănăsescu, project director, has started investigating the young Brentano’s Aristotelianism;
  • Elena Băltuță, team member, has started investigating the Thomist influence on Brentano’s dissertation;
  • The site of the Alexandru Dragomir Institute of Philosophy (the host of the project development) was initiated;
  • Ion Tănăsescu has rendered a study in German „Die Asymmetrie des Intentionalen bei Brentano” (18 p.) to Revue roumaine de philosophie (ISI);
  • Elena Băltuță has rendered a study in English „Thomas Aquinas on Bridging the Gap between Mind and Reality” (14 p.) to Revue roumaine de philosophie (ISI).

FUNDING: 98.891,50 LEI

Summary:

  • Scheduling of project meetings; systematization of necessary bibliographical material and the compiling of a specialist bibliography; creating a site for the project;
  • Summited two articles to two ISI indexed journals.
Research topics
  • Ion Tănăsescu – Empiric and descriptive in the accomplishment of the psychology as a science in Brentano;
  • Elena Băltuță  – The Thomistic influence on Brentano’s dissertation.
Discussed issues:
  • Brentano’s empirical psychology and the physiological or the scientific psychology;
  • The role of distinction genetic-descriptive in the descriptive psychology lectures;
  • The traditional, Aristotelian-thomistic dimension of Brentano’s psychology;
  • Thomas Aquinas’ influence on Brentano’s dissertation on the problem of being as truth and on the deduction of Aristotelian categories.