Stephen Brock, Holy Cross University – “Thomas Aquinas, the Bearer of Practical Truth, and the Rationality of Action” at the workshop Practical Truth: Reflections on the Aristotelian Tradition, April 21-22, 2017.
Interpreters of what Aristotle calls practical truth differ about what its bearer is or what it is properly said of. As a result, they also differ about the distinction between practical and theoretical truth. It is generally agreed that the bearer of theoretical truth is an assertion or a judgment about some matter, and that such truth consists in the judgment’s describing the matter correctly. But while some hold that the same account applies to practical truth, others hold that its bearer is an action, and that what it consists in is the action’s conformity with right desire. Thomas Aquinas thinks the bearer of practical truth is a judgment. In this paper I present his position, consider some objections on behalf of the opposing view, and suggest what he would think is at stake the issue.