Date of Award

5-1-2014

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Philosophy

First Advisor

Auxier, Randall

Abstract

John Dewey was a philosopher of experience; if there is a thread that ties his vast literary output together it would be just that--the tracing and understanding of the various forms of experience. Dewey developed and elucidated three distinct kinds of experience throughout his career. If taken "subjectively" one might term these experiences immediate, mediate, and consummate; the corresponding "objects" of each would thus be, in order, events, relations between events, and the work of art (which is itself a sublation of events and their relations). To speak loosely, we might call these unconscious experience, conscious experience, and aesthetic experience. My thesis is that consummate experience is best understood as a kind of dialectical sublation between immediate and mediate experience: I intend to use the work of John Dewey to describe each of these three types of experience and show how consummate experience might be understood as a sublation of the immediate and the mediate.

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