Visit: Fall 2022
Project Title: First-person Authority and the Value of Self-knowledge in Aquinas
Matthew Glaser is the Mark and Kathryn Tomasic Fellow at Fordham University for the 2022-2023 school year. His research interests are in philosophy of mind, epistemology, and the history of philosophy (particularly medieval thought). His dissertation research focuses on self-knowledge, specifically on developing a Thomistic account of self-knowledge in dialogue with contemporary theories of self-knowledge. As a visiting graduate student at the University of Notre Dame this fall, he will be working on a two-part project. The first part will investigate Aquinas’s thought in order to develop a Thomistic account of first-person authority about one’s own mental states. While much has been said about how Aquinas's account of self-cognition might handle phenomena associated with self-awareness, little has been said about how it might account for first-person authority about one's own mental states. The second part of the project will investigate Aquinas’s philosophical anthropology to develop an account of the value of self-knowledge. While some contemporary philosophers have written on the value of self-knowledge and the history of philosophy is rich in thought on self-knowledge’s value, Aquinas never explicitly addresses this topic. This part of the project thus aims to develop a contemporary account of self-knowledge’s value broadly grounded in Aquinas's thought.