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Rationality in Perception: Transformations of Mind and Cognition 1250-1550

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "RiP" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: 14

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Finland [FI]
 Project website
 Total cost 1˙415˙627 €
 EC max contribution 1˙415˙627 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2014-STG
 Funding Scheme ERC-STG
 Starting year 2015
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2015-04-01   to  2020-03-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

The project RiP aims to provide a groundbreaking new interpretation of late medieval theories of mind and cognition by focusing on the influence higher cognitive (rational) powers exert on lower (sensory) ones in the neglected tradition of Augustinian philosophy of perception.

Due to increasing difficulties in explaining the unity and objectivity of perceptual experience, late medieval authors came to question the dominant Aristotelian theory, with its passive account of perception and emphatic separation between sensory and intellectual functions. This led to a resurfacing of the Augustinian tradition, which is characterized by an emphasis on activity and top-down processing, built around the notions of intentionality and self-awareness.

The project investigates the hypothesis that perception changes from being explained on the basis of a model of the soul that is metaphysically composite of really distinct clusters of functions to a model in which rationality permeates the functions previously attributed to lower cognitive capacities. It is the 'flow of reason', an expression found in a late sixteenth-century textbook.

The project has therefore two main objectives: (1) to offer the first systematic study of late medieval theories of perception, focusing on the relation between the senses and intellect (2) to retrace the shift in late medieval philosophy of perception that led to (a) a progressive questioning of direct realism in cognition and (b) the incremental reduction of all psychological functions to the mind.

The results of the project will allow a better understanding of the philosophical assumptions of late medieval theories of cognition, shedding new light on the historical background of early modern and contemporary conceptions of rationality.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2018 Anselm Oelze
Geschichte der Tierethik: Mittelalter
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
Erschienen in: Handbuch Tierethik. Grundlagen - Kontexte - Perspektiven 2019-11-22
2018 Anselm Oelze
Konnen Tiere irren? Philosophische Antworten aus dem 13. und 14. Jahrhundert.
published pages: 179-194, ISSN: , DOI:
Irrtum – Error – Erreur. Miscellanea Mediaevalia 2019-11-22
2018 Annemieke Verboon
La perception sensorielle et la physiologie du savoir. Manuel du fin XVe siecle MS Wurzburg, UB, M ch f. 118
published pages: 29, ISSN: 0335-5985, DOI:
Archives de sciences sociales des religions 2019-11-13
2017 José Filipe Silva
Notule libri Priorum
published pages: 388-390, ISSN: 0144-5340, DOI: 10.1080/01445340.2017.1362760
History and Philosophy of Logic 38/4 2019-11-13
2019 José Filipe Silva and Christina Thornqvist
Introduction: Assimilation and Representation in Medieval Theories of Cognition
published pages: 223-243, ISSN: 0042-7543, DOI:
Vivarium 57, 3-4 2019-11-13
2018 José Filipe Silva
Intentionality in Medieval Augustinianism
published pages: 25-43, ISSN: 0342-8117, DOI:
Phänomenologische Forschungen 2019-11-13
2019 José Filipe Silva
Robert Kilwardby on Negative Judgement
published pages: , ISSN: 0167-7411, DOI: 10.1007/s11245-018-9577-x
Topoi 2019-11-13
2018 Christian Kny and José Filipe Silva
Nicholas of Cusa on Rational Perception
published pages: 177-213, ISSN: 0068-4023, DOI:
Bulletin de philosophie médiévale 59 2019-11-13
2017 Juhana Toivanen & José Filipe Silva
Internalismi, eksternalismi ja keskiaikainen havaintofilosofia
published pages: , ISSN: 1237-1645, DOI:
Niin & Näin 2019-05-29
2017 José Filipe Silva
published pages: 43-61, ISSN: 0309-7013, DOI: 10.1093/arisup/akw019
Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 91/1 2019-05-29
2016 Anselm Oelze
Theories of Animal Rationality in the Later Middle Ages
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
2017 Vili Lähteenmäki
L\'Attention dans la Philosophie de l\'Esprit de John Locke
published pages: 73-86, ISSN: 0014-2166, DOI:
Les Études Philosophiques 2019-05-29
2015 José Filipe Silva
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
Tahiti: Taidehistoria tieteenä 4 per year 2019-05-29

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