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This volume collects essays which are thematically connected through the work of Kent Emery Jr., to whom the volume is dedicated. A main focus lies on the attempts to bridge the gap between mysticism and a systematic approach to medieval philosophical thought. The essays address a wide range of topics concerning (a) the nature of the human soul (in philosophical and theological discourse); (b) medieval theories of cognition (natural and supernatural), self-knowledge and knowledge of God; (c) the human soul’s contemplation of, and union with, God; (d) the tradition of “the modes of theology” in the Middle Ages; (e) the relation between philosophy and theology. Various articles are dedicated to major figures of the 13th and 14th century philosophy, others display new material based on critical editions. Contributors are Jan A. Aertsen, Stephen Brown, Bernardo Carlos Bazán, William J. Courtenay, Alfredo Santiago Culleton, Silvia Donati, Bernd Goehring, Guy Guldentops, Daniel Hobbins, Roberto Hofmeister Pich, Georgi Kapriev, Steven P. Marrone, Stephen M. Metzger, Timothy B. Noone, Mikolaj Olszewski, Alessandro Palazzo, Garrett R. Smith, Andreas Speer, Carlos Steel, Loris Sturlese, Chris Schabel, Christian Trottmann, and Gordon A. Wilson.
The scholarly purpose of the volume is to restate and describe the historical reception of John Duns Scotus’ meta-physics, which, by taking the real concept of “being as being” as the first object of first philosophy, laid the ground-work for what scholars have called “the second beginning of metaphysics” in Western philosophy.
Scotus outlined a theory of transcendental concepts that includes an analysis of the concept of being and its prop-erties, and a general analysis of modalities and intrinsic modes, paving the way for a view of metaphysics as a sci-ence of “possible being.” From the fourteenth to the eighteenth century Scotists invented and developed special concepts that could embrace both real being and the being of reason. The investigation of the metaphysics of the transcendentals by subsequent thinkers who were guided by Scotus is the central focus of the present collective book.