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A Kantian solution to the problem of hypochondria

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Title: A Kantian solution to the problem of hypochondria
Author: Dennedy, Kyla G.
Degree Master of Arts - MA
Program Philosophy
Copyright Date: 2006
Abstract: The thesis explores Kant’s views on the operations of the mind from the perspective of mental infirmity, particularly hypochondria. It argues hypochondria’s public prominence plays a role in the theories of the mind of several philosophers, including Kant. and in turn, Kant’s theory of the operations of the mind helps further the shift to understanding hypochondria as primarily a mental disorder. Kant was a self-proclaimed hypochondriac, and yet was unusual amongst sufferers of the disorder in that he claimed to be able to control his hypochondria by way of regimen and reason. If Kant truly was able to mitigate the deleterious aspects of hypochondria merely by strictly adhering to a regimen which made reason the ruler of the mind, this may have benefit for current sufferers of hypochondria. The thesis argues that Kant hoped his account of the operations of the mind would have empirical consequences for the understanding and amelioration of mental illness in humans. In doing so, it aims to show, contra Strawson and others, that not only are transcendental idealism and the transcendental subject necessary to Kant’s overall philosophy, but removing them, as Strawson does, leaves Kant’s theory unable to account for the empirical . consequences of the faculties of the mind - consequences which are evident when one considers Kant’s own struggle with hypochondria.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2429/17886
Series/Report no. UBC Retrospective Theses Digitization Project [http://www.library.ubc.ca/archives/retro_theses/]

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