•  14
    Ens Primum Cognitum in Thomas Aquinas and the Tradition presents a reading of Thomas Aquinas' claim that "being" is the first object of the human intellect. Blending the insights of both the early Thomistic tradition (c.1380--1637AD) and the Leonine Thomistic revival (1879--present), Brian Kemple examines how this claim of Aquinas has been traditionally understood, and what is lacking in that understanding. While the recent tradition has emphasized the primacy of the real (so-called ens reale) i…Read more
  •  8
    Elaboration of the Intellectual Sign
    American Journal of Semiotics 34 (1): 87-130. 2018.
    Human beings cannot bear very much discontinuity: we innately desire resolution of our experiences, no matter how disparate they are from one another, into a common whole, into a life which “makes sense.” We desire to be persons with identities resolved into coherent wholes. But the socio-cultural world of everyday activity often presents a fragmentary and irresoluble array of experience which seemingly prevents this resolution. At the root of this fragmentation is not, however, the experiences …Read more
  •  7
    Elaboration of the Intellectual Sign in advance
    American Journal of Semiotics. forthcoming.
  •  6
    Evaluating the Metaphysical Realism of Étienne Gilson
    Studia Gilsoniana 4 (4): 363-380. 2015.
    While there is an absence of treatises devoted to the question of ens ut primum cognitum, there is no shortage of brief and implicit treatments; indeed, nearly every Thomist of the past seven centuries seems to have at least something to say about the notion that being is the first of our intellectual conceptions. Most recent Thomist thinkers—including Gilson—assume this ens to be nothing other than the ens reale of things entitatively considered, operating as they do out of a framework within w…Read more
  •  6
    The preeminent necessity of prudence
    Studia Gilsoniana 6 (4): 549-572. 2017.
    Thomas Aquinas holds not only that prudence, the virtue of right practical reasoning, is necessary for living well, but emphatically asserts that it “is the virtue most necessary to human life.” This essay argues that the force of Thomas’ assertion should not be understood as simply contradicting the objection—that “it seems that prudence is not a virtue necessary to living a good life”—with vigor, but rather, as we intend to show, that although all the moral virtues are necessary for the good l…Read more
  •  6
    The Consolation of a Christian
    International Philosophical Quarterly 58 (4): 423-435. 2018.
    If the desire to see God in Himself belongs to human nature, but the attainment of that vision can be affected only by supernatural grace, how is it that this desire remaining unfulfilled is not a frustration of the nature? How is it that nature is aiming at a good in vain, at an object that it cannot achieve? Even though the elicited natural desire to see God is not fulfilled in this life, and even though there is no demonstrative proof that can be provided by natural reason alone of its being …Read more
  •  2
    The Consolation of a Christian in advance
    International Philosophical Quarterly. forthcoming.