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1.3. Consciousness and Materialism (Consciousness and Materialism on PhilPapers)

See also:
Bates, Jared (2009). A defence of the explanatory argument for physicalism. Philosophical Quarterly 59 (235):315-324.   (Google)
Abstract: One argument for reductive physicalism, the explanatory argument, rests on its ability to explain the vast and growing body of acknowledged psychophysical correlations. Jaegwon Kim has recently levelled four objections against the explanatory argument. I assess all of Kim's objections, showing that none is successful. The result is a defence of the explanatory argument for physicalism
Batthyany, Alexander & Elitzur, Avshalom C. (eds.) (2009). Irreducibly Conscious. Selected Papers on Consciousness. Winter.   (Google)
Rupert, Robert D. (2007). Review of J. T. Ismael, The Situated Self. Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2007 (10).   (Google)

1.3a The Knowledge Argument

Alter, Torin (1998). A limited defense of the knowledge argument. Philosophical Studies 90 (1):35-56.   (Cited by 15 | Google | More links)
Alter, Torin (2006). Does representationalism undermine the knowledge argument? In Torin Alter & Sven Walter (eds.), Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 5 | Google)
Abstract: The knowledge argument aims to refute physicalism, the view that the world is entirely physical. The argument first establishes the existence of facts (or truths or information) about consciousness that are not a priori deducible from the complete physical truth, and then infers the falsity of physicalism from this lack of deducibility. Frank Jackson (1982, 1986) gave the argument its classic formulation. But now he rejects the argument (Jackson 1998b, 2003, chapter 3 of this volume). On his view, it relies on a false conception of sensory experience, which should be replaced with representationalism (also known as intentionalism), the view that phenomenal states are just representational states. And he argues that mental representation is physically explicable
Alter, Torin (2001). Know-how, ability, and the ability hypothesis. Theoria 67 (3):229-39.   (Cited by 7 | Google)
Abstract: David Lewis (1983, 1988) and Laurence Nemirow (1980, 1990) claim that knowing what an experience is like is knowing-how, not knowing-that. They identify this know-how with the abilities to remember, imagine, and recognize experiences, and Lewis labels their view ‘the Ability Hypothesis’. The Ability Hypothesis has intrinsic interest. But Lewis and Nemirow devised it specifically to block certain anti-physicalist arguments due to Thomas Nagel (1974, 1986) and Frank Jackson (1982, 1986). Does it?
Alter, Torin (online). Knowledge argument against physicalism. Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.   (Google)
Alter, Torin (1995). Mary's new perspective. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 73 (4):585-84.   (Cited by 2 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Alter, Torin & Walter, Sven (eds.) (2007). Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract: What is the nature of consciousness? How is consciousness related to brain processes? This volume collects thirteen new papers on these topics: twelve by leading and respected philosophers and one by a leading color-vision scientist. All focus on consciousness in the "phenomenal" sense: on what it's like to have an experience. Consciousness has long been regarded as the biggest stumbling block for physicalism, the view that the mind is physical. The controversy has gained focus over the last few decades, and phenomenal knowledge and phenomenal concepts--knowledge of consciousness and the associated concepts--have come to play increasingly prominent roles in this debate. Consider Frank Jackson's famous case of Mary, the super-scientist who learns all the physical information while confined in a black-and-white room. According to Jackson, if physicalism is true, then Mary's physical knowledge should allow her to deduce what it's like to see in color. Yet it seems intuitively clear that she learns something when she leaves the room. But then how can consciousness be physical? Arguably, whether this sort of reasoning is sound depends on how phenomenal concepts and phenomenal knowledge are construed. For example, some argue that the Mary case reveals something about phenomenal concepts but has no implications for the nature of consciousness itself. Are responses along these lines adequate? Or does the problem arise again at the level of phenomenal concepts? The papers in this volume engage with the latest developments in this debate. The authors' perspectives range widely. For example, Daniel Dennett argues that anti-physicalist arguments such as the knowledge argument are simply confused; David Papineau grants that such arguments at least reveal important features of phenomenal concepts; and David Chalmers defends the anti-physicalist arguments, arguing that the "phenomenal concept strategy" cannot succeed
Alter, Torin (web). Phenomenal knowledge without experience. In E. Wright (ed.), The Case for Qualia. MIT Press.   (Google)
Abstract: Phenomenal knowledge usually comes from experience. But it
need not. For example, one could know what it’s like to see red without
seeing red—indeed, without having any color experiences. Daniel Dennett
(2007) and Pete Mandik (forthcoming) argue that this and related
considerations undermine the knowledge argument against physicalism.
If they are right, then this is not only a problem for anti‐physicalists. Their
argument threatens to undermine any version of phenomenal realism—
the view that there are phenomenal properties, or qualia, that are not
conceptually reducible to physical or functional properties. I will argue
that this threat is illusory. Explaining why will clarify what is and is not at issue in discussions of the knowledge argument and phenomenal realism. This will strengthen the case for physically and functionally irreducible qualia.
Alter, Torin (online). The knowledge argument. A Field Guide to the Philosophy of Mind.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Abstract: Frank Jackson first presented the Knowledge Argument (henceforth KA) in "Epiphenomenal Qualia" 1982). The KA is an argument against physicalism, the doctrine that (very roughly put) everything is physical. The general thrust of the KA is that physicalism errs by misconstruing or denying the existence of the subjective features of experience. Physicalists have given numerous responses, and the debate continues about whether the KA ultimately succeeds in refuting any or all forms of physicalism. Jackson himself has recently
Alter, Torin (2007). The knowledge argument. In Max Velmans & Susan Schneider (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness. Blackwell.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Abstract: The knowledge argument aims to refute physicalism, the doctrine that the world is entirely physical. Physicalism (also known as materialism) is widely accepted in contemporary philosophy. But some doubt that phenomenal consciousness
Anderson, James T. (online). A simple refutation of the knowledge argument against physicalism.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: One of the most persuasive objections to the identity thesis
Aranyosi, István (2008). Review of Torin Alter and Sven Walter (eds.) Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge. Mind 117 (467):665-669.   (Google)
Bachrach, Jay E. (1990). Qualia and theory reduction: A criticism of Paul Churchland. Iyyun 281.   (Annotation | Google)
Balog, Katalin (2008). Review of Torin Alter, Sven wAlter (eds.), Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2008 (5).   (Google)
Abstract: The book under review is a collection of thirteen essays on the nature phenomenal concepts and the ways in which phenomenal concepts figure in debates over physicalism. Phenomenal concepts are of special interest in a number of ways. First, they refer to phenomenal experiences, and the qualitative character of those experiences (aka “qualia”) whose metaphysical status is hotly debated. There are recent arguments, originating in Descartes’ famous conceivability argument, that purport to show that phenomenal experience is irreducibly non-physical. Second, phenomenal concepts are widely thought to be special and unique among concepts. Both the anti-physicalist arguments and physicalist replies to these arguments turn on views about the nature of phenomenal concepts. In this review I survey the many ways in which the essays in this volume are engaged (pro or con) with anti-physicalist arguments and the role phenomenal concepts play in these arguments.
Beaton, Michael (2005). What RoboDennett still doesn't know. Journal Of Consciousness Studies 12 (12):3-25.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The explicit aim of Daniel Dennett’s new paper ‘What RoboMary Knows’ is to show that Mary (the hypothetical colour-blind neuroscientist) will necessarily be able to come to know what it is like to see in colour, if she fully understands all the physical facts about colour vision. I believe we can establish that Dennett’s line of reasoning is flawed, but the flaw is not as simple as an equivocation on ‘knows’. Rather, it goes to the heart of functionalism and hinges on whether or not Dennett is correct to claim that there is ‘no fact of the matter’ about what subjective experience consists in.
Beisecker, David (2000). There's something about Mary: Phenomenal consciousness and its attributions. Southwest Philosophy Review 16 (2):143-152.   (Google)
Berntsen, J. (2004). Why physicalists needn't bother with Perry's recent response to the knowledge argument. Southern Journal of Philosophy 42 (2):135-148.   (Google)
Bigelow, John C. & Pargetter, Robert (1990). Acquaintance with qualia. Theoria 61 (3):129-147.   (Cited by 16 | Annotation | Google)
Bigelow, John C. & Pargetter, Robert (2006). Re-acquaintance with qualia. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 84 (3):353 – 378.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Frank Jackson argued, in an astronomically frequently cited paper on 'Epiphenomenal qualia'[Jackson 1982 that materialism must be mistaken. His argument is called the knowledge argument. Over the years since he published that paper, he gradually came to the conviction that the conclusion of the knowledge argument must be mistaken. Yet he long remained totally unconvinced by any of the very numerous published attempts to explain where his knowledge argument had gone astray. Eventually, Jackson did publish a diagnosis of the reasons why, he now thinks, his knowledge argument against materialism fails to prove the falsity of materialism [Jackson 2005. He argues that you can block the knowledge argument against materialism - but only if you tie yourself to a dubious doctrine called representationalism. We argue that the knowledge argument fails as a refutation of either representational or nonrepresentational materialism. It does, however, furnish both materialists and dualists with a successful argument for the existence of distinctively first-person modes of acquaintance with mental states. Jackson's argument does not refute materialism: but it does bring to the surface significant features of thought and experience, which many dualists have sensed, and most materialists have missed
Byrne, Alex (2006). Review of There's Something About Mary. Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 21.   (Google)
Byrne, Alex (2002). Something about Mary. Grazer Philosophische Studien 63 (1):27-52.   (Cited by 13 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Jackson's black-and-white Mary teaches us that the propositional content of perception cannot be fully expressed in language
Campbell, Neil (2003). An inconsistency in the knowledge argument. Erkenntnis 58 (2):261-266.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Cath, Yuri (2009). The ability hypothesis and the new knowledge-how. Noûs 43 (1):137-156.   (Google | More links)
Chalmers, David J. (2004). Phenomenal concepts and the knowledge argument. In Peter Ludlow, Yujin Nagasawa & Daniel Stoljar (eds.), There's Something About Mary: Essays on Phenomenal Consciousness and Frank Jackson's Knowledge Argument. MIT Press.   (Cited by 16 | Google | More links)
Abstract: *[[This paper is largely based on material in other papers. The first three sections and the appendix are drawn with minor modifications from Chalmers 2002c (which explores issues about phenomenal concepts and beliefs in much more depth, mostly independently of questions about materialism). The main ideas of the last three sections are drawn from Chalmers 1996, 1999, and 2002a, although with considerable revision and elaboration. ]]
Churchland, Paul M. (1989). Knowing qualia: A reply to Jackson. In A Neurocomputational Perspective. MIT Press.   (Cited by 63 | Annotation | Google)
Churchland, Paul M. (1985). Reduction, qualia and the direct introspection of brain states. Journal of Philosophy 82 (January):8-28.   (Cited by 110 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Coleman, Sam (2009). Why the Ability Hypothesis is best forgotten. Journal of Consciousness Studies 16 (2-3):74-97.   (Google)
Abstract: According to the knowledge argument, physicalism fails because when physically omniscient Mary first sees red, her gain in phenomenal knowledge involves a gain in factual knowledge. Thus not all facts are physical facts. According to the ability hypothesis, the knowledge argument fails because Mary only acquires abilities to imagine, remember and recognise redness, and not new factual knowledge. I argue that reducing Mary’s new knowledge to abilities does not affect the issue of whether she also learns factually: I show that gaining specific new phenomenal knowledge is required for acquiring abilities of the relevant kind. Phenomenal knowledge being basic to abilities, and not vice versa, it is left an open question whether someone who acquires such abilities also learns something factual. The answer depends on whether the new phenomenal knowledge involved is factual. But this is the same question we wanted to settle when first considering the knowledge argument. The ability hypothesis, therefore, has offered us no dialectical progress with the knowledge argument, and is best forgotten.
Conee, Earl (1985). Physicalism and phenomenal properties. Philosophical Quarterly 35 (July):296-302.   (Cited by 5 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Conee, Earl (1994). Phenomenal knowledge. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 72 (2):136-150.   (Cited by 23 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Crane, Tim (2003). Subjective facts. In Real Metaphysics: Essays in Honour of D. H. Mellor. New York: Routledge.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: An important theme running through D.H. Mellor’s work is his realism, or as I shall call it, his objectivism: the idea that reality as such is how it is, regardless of the way we represent it, and that philosophical error often arises from confusing aspects of our subjective representation of the world with aspects of the world itself. Thus central to Mellor’s work on time has been the claim that the temporal A-series (previously called ‘tense’) is unreal while the B-series (the series of ‘dates’) is real. The A-series is something which is a product of our representation of the world, but not a feature of reality itself. And in other, less central, areas of his work, this kind of theme has been repeated: ‘Objective decision making’ (1980) argues that the right way to understand decision theory is as a theory of what is the objectively correct decision, the one that will actually as a matter of fact achieve your intended goal, rather than the one that is justified purely in terms of what you believe, regardless of whether the belief is true or false. ‘I and now’ (1989) argues against a substantial subjective conception of the self, using analogies between subjective and objective ways of thinking about time and subjective and objective ways of thinking about the self. And in the paper which shall be the focus of my attention here, ‘Nothing like experience’ (1992), Mellor..
Cummins, Robert E. (1984). The mind of the matter: Comments on Paul Churchland. Philosophy of Science Association 1984.   (Cited by 1 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Dennett, Daniel C. (1991). "Epiphenomenal" qualia? In Consciousness Explained. Little, Brown.   (Annotation | Google | More links)
Dennett, Daniel C. (2006). What robomary knows. In Torin Alter & Sven Walter (eds.), Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 8 | Google)
Deutsch, Max (ms). Subjective physical facts.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Endicott, Ronald P. (1995). The refutation by analogous ectoqualia. Southern Journal of Philosophy 33 (1):19-30.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Fürst, Martina (2004). Qualia and phenomenal concepts as basis of the knowledge argument. Acta Analytica 19 (32):143-152.   (Google)
Abstract: The central attempt of this paper is to explain the underlying intuitions of Frank Jackson’s “Knowledge Argument” that the epistemic gap between phenomenal knowledge and physical knowledge points towards a corresponding ontological gap. The first step of my analysis is the claim that qualia are epistemically special because the acquisition of the phenomenal concept of a quale x requires the experience of x. Arguing what is so special about phenomenal concepts and pointing at the inherence-relation with the qualia they pick out, I give compelling reasons for the existence of ontologically distinct entities. Finally I conclude that phenomenal knowledge is caused by phenomenal properties and the instantiation of these properties is a specific phenomenal fact, which can not be mediated by any form of descriptive information. So it will be shown that phenomenal knowledge must count as the possession of very special information necessarily couched in subjective, phenomenal conceptions
Furash, G. (1989). Frank Jackson's knowledge argument against materialism. Dialogue 32 (October):1-6.   (Cited by 1 | Annotation | Google)
Gava, Giacomo (2004). The Knowledge Argument: A Survey and a Proposal. Padova: Cleup Ed Padova.   (Google)
Gertler, Brie (1999). A defense of the knowledge argument. Philosophical Studies 93 (3):317-336.   (Cited by 13 | Google | More links)
Gertler, Brie (2005). The Knowledge Argument. In The Encyclopedia of Philosophy. MacMillan.   (Google)
Abstract: The definitive statement of the Knowledge Argument was formulated by Frank Jackson, in a paper entitled “Epiphenomenal Qualia” that appeared in The Philosophical Quarterly in 1982. Arguments in the same spirit had appeared earlier (Broad 1925, Robinson 1982), but Jackson’s argument is most often compared with Thomas Nagel’s argument in “What is it Like to be a Bat?” (1974). Jackson, however, takes pains to distinguish his argument from Nagel’s. This entry will follow standard practice in focusing on Jackson’s argument, though I will also describe the main points of alleged similarity and dissimilarity between these two arguments
Gleeson, Andres (1999). Deducing the mind. Inquiry 42 (3-4):385-410.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Frank Jackson has argued that, in principle, all mental truths are deducible from all physical science truths: 'deducibility'. Jackson's defence of deducibility relies upon the method for producing naturalistic definitions of mental states championed in the analytical functionalism of himself, David Lewis, and others. Two arguments are presented. The first contends that the particular naturalistic definitions of analytical functionalism fail because they do not take account of the extraordinary kind of bodily animation displayed by human beings, which I argue is necessary to (at least one kind of) mentality; machines lacking (at least this one kind of) mentality can satisfy the naturalistic definitions of analytical functionalism. So Jackson's defence of deducibility fails as it stands. The second argument contends that no naturalistic conceptual analysis of the mental can be adequate, because understanding (certain) mental concepts requires a special kind of affective reaction here named 'personal response', while understanding naturalistic concepts does not require this- therefore no naturalistic analysis can ever capture our common-sense mental concepts. The upshot is that Jackson's defence of deducibility cannot be repaired. No defence of deducibility will work which relies upon the possibility of naturalistic conceptual analyses of mentality
Graham, George & Horgan, Terence E. (2005). Mary Mary au contraire: Reply to Raffman. Philosophical Studies 122 (2):203-12.   (Google | More links)
Graham, George & Horgan, Terence E. (2000). Mary Mary, quite contrary. Philosophical Studies 99 (1):59-87.   (Cited by 14 | Google | More links)
Harman, Gilbert (1993). Can science understand the mind? In Gilbert Harman (ed.), Conceptions of the Human Mind: Essays on Honor of George A. Miller. Lawrence Erlbaum.   (Cited by 3 | Annotation | Google)
Hellie, Benj (2004). Inexpressible truths and the allure of the knowledge argument. In Yujin Nagasawa, Peter Ludlow & Daniel Stoljar (eds.), There's Something About Mary. The Mit Press.   (Google)
Abstract: I argue on linguistic grounds that when Mary comes to know what it's like to see a red thing, she comes to know a certain inexpressible truth about the character of her own experience. This affords a "no concept" reply to the knowledge argument. The reason the Knowledge Argument has proven so intractable may be that we believe that an inexpressible concept and an expressible concept cannot have the same referent.
Hershfield, Jeffrey (1998). Lycan on the subjectivity of the mental. Philosophical Psychology 11 (2):229-38.   (Google)
Abstract: The subjectivity of the mental consists in the idea that there are features of our mental states that are perspectival in that they are accessible only from the first-person point of view. This is held to be a problem for materialist theories of mind, since such theories contend that there is nothing about the mind that cannot be fully described from a third-person (objective) point of view. Lycan suggests a notion of “phenomenal information” that is held to be perspectival in the relevant sense but also perfectly objective, since it is explicated in terms of the computational roles of higher-order mental representations. I argue that his project fails because phenomenal information is accessible to observers, and hence it fails to be perspectival in the required sense. That sense demands that there be aspects of our conscious experiences that cannot be intersubjectively compared
Hodgson, David (2008). The knowledge argument: A response to Elizabeth Schier. Journal of Consciousness Studies 15 (4):112-115.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: I much appreciated Elizabeth Schier's paper on Frank Jackson's knowledge argument, published in the January 2008 issue of Journal of Consciousness Studies (Schier, 2008) -- in part, I confess, because of resonances with my gestalt argument for free will (Hodgson, 2001; 2002; 2005; 2007a,b). I would like to offer two comments on this paper
Holman, Emmett L. (2006). Dualism and secondary quality eliminativism: Putting a new spin on the knowledge argument. Philosophical Studies 128 (2):229-56.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Frank Jackson formulated his knowledge argument as an argument for dualism. In this paper I show how the argument can be modified to also establish the irreducibility of the secondary qualities to the properties of physical theory, and ultimately
Horowitz, Amir & Jacobson-Horowitz, Hilla (2005). The knowledge argument and higher-order properties. Ratio 18 (1):48-64.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Howell, Robert J. (2007). The knowledge argument and objectivity. Philosophical Studies 135 (2).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In this paper I argue that Frank Jackson
Jackson, Frank (1982). Epiphenomenal qualia. Philosophical Quarterly 32 (April):127-136.   (Cited by 566 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Jackson, Frank (2003). Mind and illusion. In Anthony O'Hear (ed.), Minds and Persons. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 19 | Google | More links)
Jacquette, Dale (1995). The blue banana trick: Dennett on Jackson's color scientist. Theoria 61 (3):217-30.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Jackson, Frank (2006). The knowledge argument, diaphanousness, representationalism. In Torin Alter & Sven Walter (eds.), Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 4 | Google)
Jackson, Frank (1986). What Mary didn't know. Journal of Philosophy 83 (May):291-5.   (Cited by 227 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Jutronic, Dunja (2004). The knowledge argument--some comments. Croatian Journal of Philosophy 4 (11):193-197.   (Google)
Kahane, Guy (2010). Feeling pain for the very first time: The normative knowledge argument. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 80 (1):20-49.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In this paper I present a new argument against internalist theories of practical reason. My argument is inpired by Frank Jackson's celebrated Knowledge Argument. I ask what will happen when an agent experiences pain for the first time. Such an agent, I argue, will gain new normative knowledge that internalism cannot explain. This argument presents a similar difficulty for other subjectivist and constructivist theories of practical reason and value. I end by suggesting that some debates in meta-ethics and in the philosophy of mind might be more closely intertwined than philosophers in either area would like to believe
Kallestrup, Jesper (2006). Epistemological physicalism and the knowledge argument. American Philosophical Quarterly 43 (1):1-23.   (Google)
Abstract: This paper offers a new solution to the knowledge argument. Both a priori and a posteriori physicalists reject the claim that Mary does not know all the facts, but they do so for different reasons. While the former think that Mary gains no new knowledge of any fact, the latter think that Mary gains new knowledge of an old fact. This paper argues that on a broad understanding of what counts as physical, it is consistent with physicalism that Mary does not know all the physical facts, and that on a narrow understanding, it is consistent with physicalism that Mary knows all the physical facts, but not all the facts. Either way, Mary gains new knowledge of a new fact that is not non-physical. The resultant view
Levin, Janet (1986). Could love be like a heatwave? Physicalism and the subjective character of experience. Philosophical Studies 49 (March):245-61.   (Cited by 14 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Lewis, David (1990). What experience teaches. In William G. Lycan (ed.), Mind and Cognition. Blackwell.   (Cited by 99 | Annotation | Google)
Loar, Brian (1990). Phenomenal states. Philosophical Perspectives 4:81-108.   (Cited by 156 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Ludlow, Peter; Nagasawa, Yujin & Stoljar, Daniel (eds.) (2004). There's Something About Mary: Essays on Phenomenal Consciousness and Frank Jackson's Knowledge Argument. MIT Press.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Abstract: The arguments presented in this comprehensive collection have important implications for the philosophy of mind and the study of consciousness.
Lycan, William G. (1995). A limited defense of phenomenal information. In Thomas Metzinger (ed.), Conscious Experience. Imprint Academic.   (Cited by 17 | Annotation | Google)
Lycan, William G. (1998). Phenomenal information again: It is both real and intrinsically perspectival. Philosophical Psychology 11 (2):239-42.   (Google)
Abstract: In two recent publications I argued against Nemirow and Lewis that there is distinctive, irreducibly phenomenal and perspectival information of the sort alleged by Jackson; but I gave an account of such information that is entirely compatible with a materialist view of human subjects. Hershfield argues that the latter account is inadequate, in that it fails to support the claim that the information it characterizes is irreducibly phenomenal or perspectival. I reply that Hershfield's conclusion does not follow from his argument's premises
Lycan, William G. (2003). Perspectival representation and the knowledge argument. In Quentin Smith & Aleksandar Jokic (eds.), Consciousness: New Philosophical Perspectives. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Someday there will be no more articles written about the
Malatesti, Luca (2004). The Knowledge Argument. Dissertation, University of Stirling   (Google | More links)
Mandik, Pete (2010). Swamp Mary's revenge: Deviant phenomenal knowledge and physicalism. Philosophical Studies 148 (2).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Deviant phenomenal knowledge is knowing what it’s like to have experiences of, e.g., red without actually having had experiences of red. Such a knower is a deviant. Some physicalists have argued and some anti-physicalists have denied that the possibility of deviants undermines anti-physicalism and the Knowledge Argument. The current paper presents new arguments defending the deviant-based attacks on anti-physicalism. Central to my arguments are considerations concerning the psychosemantic underpinnings of deviant phenomenal knowledge. I argue that physicalists are in a superior position to account for the conditions in virtue of which states of deviants constitute representations of phenomenal facts
McConnell, J. (1995). In defense of the knowledge argument. Philosophical Topics 22 (3):157-187.   (Cited by 8 | Annotation | Google)
McGeer, Victoria (2003). The trouble with Mary. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 84 (4):384-393.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Meyer, Ulrich (2001). The knowledge argument, abilities, and metalinguistic beliefs. Erkenntnis 55 (3):325-347.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Montero, Barbara (2007). Physicalism could be true even if Mary learns something new. Philosophical Quarterly 57 (227):176-189.   (Google | More links)
Moreland, James P. (2003). The knowledge argument revisited. International Philosophical Quarterly 43 (2):218-228.   (Google)
Nagasawa, Yujin (online). Knowledge argument.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: The knowledge argument is an argument against physicalism that was first formulated by Frank Jackson in 1982. While Jackson no longer endorses it, it is still regarded as one of the most important arguments in the philosophy of mind. Physicalism is the metaphysical thesis that, roughly speaking, everything in this world—including tables, galaxies, cheese cakes, cars, atoms, and even our sensations— are ultimately physical. The knowledge argument attempts to undermine this thesis by appealing to the following simple imaginary scenario: Mary is confined to a black-and-white room, is educated through black-and-white books and through lectures relayed on black-and white television. In this way she learns everything there is to know about the physical nature of the world. She knows all the physical facts about us and our environment, in a wide sense of ‘physical’ which includes everything in completed physics, chemistry, and neurophysiology, and all there is to know about the causal and relational facts consequent upon all this, including of course functional roles. (Jackson 1986, p. 291) The knowledge argument says that if physicalism is true, Mary knows everything in this world. However, it seems obvious that her knowledge is not yet complete. Suppose that..
Nagasawa, Yujin (2002). The knowledge argument against dualism. Theoria 68 (3):205-223.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Paul Churchland argues that Frank Jackson
Nagasawa, Yujin (2010). The knowledge argument and epiphenomenalism. Erkenntnis 72 (1).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Frank Jackson endorses epiphenomenalism because he thinks that his knowledge argument undermines physicalism. One of the most interesting criticisms of Jackson’s position is what I call the ‘inconsistency objection’. The inconsistency objection says that Jackson’s position is untenable because epiphenomenalism undermines the knowledge argument. The inconsistency objection has been defended by various philosophers independently, including Michael Watkins, Fredrik Stjernberg, and Neil Campbell. Surprisingly enough, while Jackson himself admits explicitly that the inconsistency objection is ‘the most powerful reply to the knowledge argument’ he knows of, it has never been discussed critically. The aim of this paper is to evaluate the objection and to identify and consider its implications. The objection is alleged to be based on a causal theory of knowledge. I argue that the objection fails by showing that any causal theory of knowledge is such that it is either false or does not support the inconsistency objection. In order to defend my argument, I offer a hypothesis concerning phenomenal knowledge
Nanay, Bence (2009). Imagining, recognizing and discriminating: Reconsidering the ability hypothesis. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 79 (3):699-717.   (Google | More links)
Nemirow, Laurence (2006). So this is what it's like: A defense of the ability hypothesis. In Torin Alter & Sven Walter (eds.), Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Nemirow, Laurence (1995). Understanding rules. Journal of Philosophy 92 (1):28-43.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Newton, Natika (1986). Churchland on direct introspection of brain states. Analysis 46 (March):97-102.   (Cited by 2 | Annotation | Google)
Nicholson, Mr D. M. (ms). From a flaw in the knowledge argument to a physicalist account of qualia.   (Google)
Abstract: The Knowledge argument based on the grey Mary thought experiment cannot be claimed as a basis for rejecting physicalism. First, because it is flawed, being so formulated as to predetermine the outcome of the thought experiment in favour of a refutation of physicalism. Second, because, once this is recognised, it becomes clear that there is one - and only one - account of the qualia-physical relationship that will permit physicalism to survive the thought experiment itself. It is suggested that the position in question is worthy of further consideration as a reasonable candidate theory for a physicalist account of qualia
Nicholson, Dennis (ms). Solving the mind-body problem - the real significance of the knowledge argument.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The Knowledge Argument is misconstructed. Knowing that it is ‘just obvious’ that Mary will learn something new on leaving her black and white room, we nevertheless assume she can acquire a complete knowledge of the physical inside it – thereby predetermining the outcome of the thought experiment in favour of a refutation of physicalism. If we reformulate the argument to leave the question of what she can learn in the room open, it becomes clear, not only that physicalism can survive the Knowledge Argument, but also that there is only one perspective on the relationship between qualia and the physical that will permit it to do so. If physicalism is true, this perspective must be the correct view of the qualia-physical relationship – the solution to the mind-body problem, a conclusion supported by its ability to resolve a number of associated difficulties, including Kripke’s problem for proposed identities and Chalmers’ Hard Problem
Nida-Rumelin, Martine (1998). On belief about experiences: An epistemological distinction applied to the knowledge argument against physicalism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 58 (1):51-73.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Nida-Rumelin, Martine (1997). On belief about experiences: An epistemological distinction applied to the knowledge argument. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 58 (1):51-73.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Nida-Rumelin, Martine (online). Qualia: The Knowledge Argument. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.   (Cited by 5 | Google)
Nida-Rumelin, Martine (online). The knowledge argument. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.   (Google)
Nida-Rumelin, Martine (1995). What Mary couldn't know: Belief about phenomenal states. In Thomas Metzinger (ed.), Conscious Experience. Ferdinand Schoningh.   (Cited by 15 | Annotation | Google)
Noordhof, Paul (2003). Something like ability. Australian Journal of Philosophy 81 (1):21-40.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: One diagnosis of what is wrong with the Knowledge Argument rests on the Ability Hypothesis. This couples an ability analysis of knowing what an experience is like together with a denial that phenomenal propositions exist. I argue against both components. I consider three arguments against the existence of phenomenal propositions and find them wanting. Nevertheless I deny that knowing phenomenal propositions is part of knowing what an experience is like. I provide a hybrid account of knowing what an experience is like which is the coherent expression of a single idea: knowing what an experience is like is knowing what it would be like to have the phenomenal content of the experience as the content of an experience one is currently having. I explain how my conclusions indicate that the focus of discussion should be on the alleged explanatory gap between phenomenal facts and physical facts and not on the Knowledge Argument. The latter is a poor expression of the difficulty Physicalists face
Nordby, Knut (1990). Vision in a complete achromat: A personal account. In R. F. Hess, L. T. Sharpe & K. Nordby (eds.), Night Vision: Basic, Clinical and Applied Aspects. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Nordby, Knut (2006). What is this thing you call color? Some thoughts by a totally color-blind person. In Torin Alter & Sven Walter (eds.), Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Onof, Christian (2008). property dualism, epistemic normativity, and the limits of naturalism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 76 (1):60-85.   (Google)
Abstract: This paper examines some consequences of the (quasi-)epiphenomenalism implied by a property dualistic view of phenomenal consciousness. The focus is upon the variation of phenomenal content over time. A thought-experiment is constructed to support two claims. The weaker claim exhibits an incompatibility which arises in certain logically possible situations between a conscious subject’s epistemic norms and the requirement that one be aware of one’s conscious experience. This could be interpreted as providing some epistemic grounds for the postulation of bridging laws between the physical/functional and phenomenal domains. The stronger claim has it that the ontology of property dualism is not properly able to account for the certainty I have of being phenomenally conscious. The problem is viewed as resulting from the neglect of the intensional context involved in a proper representation of the argument for property dualism. It is argued that only a transcendental move can do justice to this certainty I have.
Papineau, David (1993). Physicalism, consciousness, and the antipathetic fallacy. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 71 (2):169-83.   (Cited by 24 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Papineau, David (1995). The antipathetic fallacy and the boundaries of consciousness. In Thomas Metzinger (ed.), Conscious Experience. Ferdinand Schoningh.   (Cited by 10 | Google)
Pelczar, Michael W. (2005). Enlightening the fully informed. Philosophical Studies 126 (1):29-56.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper develops a response to the knowledge argument against physicalism. The response is both austere, in that it does not concede the existence of non-physical information (much less non-physical facts), and natural, in that it acknowledges the alethic character of phenomenal knowledge and learning. I argue that such a response has all the advantages and none of the disadvantages of existing objections to the knowledge argument. Throughout, the goal is to develop a response that is polemically effective in addition to theoretically sound
Pelczar, Michael (2009). The knowledge argument, the open question argument, and the moral problem. Synthese 171 (1).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Someone who knew everything about the world’s physical nature could, apparently, suffer from ignorance about various aspects of conscious experience. Someone who knew everything about the world’s physical and mental nature could, apparently, suffer from moral ignorance. Does it follow that there are ways the world is, over and above the way it is physically or psychophysically? This paper defends a negative answer, based on a distinction between knowing the fact that p and knowing that p. This distinction is made intelligible by reference to criterial connections between the possession of moral or phenomenal knowledge, and the satisfaction of cognitively neutral conditions of desire and experiential history. The existence of such connections in the moral case makes for an efficient dissolution of the so-called moral problem
Pereboom, Derk (1994). Bats, brain scientists, and the limitations of introspection. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 54 (2):315-29.   (Google | More links)
Perry, John (2001). Time, consciousness and the knowledge argument. In The Importance of Time: Proceedings of the Philosophy of Time Society, 1995-2000. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Pub.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Pettit, Philip (2004). Motion blindness and the knowledge argument. In Peter Ludlow, Yujin Nagasawa & Daniel Stoljar (eds.), There's Something About Mary: Essays on Phenomenal Consciousness and Frank Jackson's Knowledge Argument. MIT Press.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In a now famous thought experiment, Frank jackson asked us t0 imagine an omniscient scientist, Mary, who is coniincd in a black-and-white room and then released into the world 0f color (jackson 1982; jackson 1986; cf. Braddon—Mitch<-:11 and Jackson 1996). Assuming that she is omniscicnt in respect of all physical facts—roughiy, all the facts available to physics and all the facts that they in turn Hx or determine-physicalism would suggest that there is no new fact Mary can discover after emancipation; physicalism holds that all facts are physical in the relevant sense (for a fuller statement scc Pettit 1993; jackson 1998). Yet we cannot help but feel that coming out of that room would be an occasion of dramatic enlightenment and, in particular, an occasion for learning facts to do with how red or yellow or blue 100ks or, as it is usually said, with what it is like t0 sec red or yellow or blue. Many in the black-and—whit<—: room knew all the physical facts about the world, where these may be taken to include three sorts of color facts: objcctual facts, as to what surface colors different objects have, assuming as I shall do throughout—that colors are properties of objects; intentional facts, as to which colors different objects 0r apparent objects are represented as having in the subjc-:ct’s experience, rightly or wrongly; and nonintentional facts, about what such color experiences are like in their effects on subiccts—wh<—:ther they are comforting, or arousing, or whatever. But, according to the argument, Mary didn’t know how any color looks or, equivalently, what color experience is like in itself, not just in its effects O1'1 subjects. This particular nonintentional fact about the quality of color c-zxpc-2ri<—:ncc-—this phenomenal fact, as it is often describcd—she did not..
Prinz, Jesse J. (ms). Mental maintenance: A response to the knowledge argument.   (Google)
Raffman, Diana (2005). Even zombies can be surprised: A reply to Graham and Horgan. Philosophical Studies 122 (2):189-202.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Raymont, Paul (1995). Tye's criticism of the knowledge argument. Dialogue 34 (4):713-26.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Raymont, Paul (1999). The know-how response to Jackson's knowledge argument. Journal of Philosophical Research 24 (January):113-26.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Abstract: I defend Frank Jackson's knowledge argument against physicalism in the philosophy of mind from a criticism that has been advanced by Laurence Nemirow and David Lewis. According to their criticism, what Mary lacked when she was in her black and white room was a set of abilities; she did not know how to recognize or imagine certain types of experience from a first-person perspective. Her subsequent discovery of what it is like to experience redness amounts to no more than her acquisition of these abilities. The physicalist can admit this, since it does not commit one to the view that there are any facts of which Mary was ignorant (in spite of her exhaustive knowledge of truths about the physical world). I argue against this view, on the grounds that the knowledge of what an experience is like cannot be equated with the possession of any set of abilities
Robinson, Howard M. (1993). Dennett on the knowledge argument. Analysis 53 (3):174-7.   (Cited by 7 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Robinson, Daniel N. (1993). Epiphenomenalism, laws, and properties. Philosophical Studies 69 (1):1-34.   (Cited by 12 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Robinson, William S. (2002). Jackson's apostasy. Philosophical Studies 111 (3):277-293.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Robinson, Howard M. (1993). The anti-materialist strategy and the "knowledge argument". In Howard M. Robinson (ed.), Objections to Physicalism. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 5 | Google)
Rosenthal, David M. (1983). Reductionism and knowledge. In L.S. Cauman, Isaac Levi, Charles D. Parsons & Robert Schwartz (eds.), How Many Questions? Hacket.   (Google)
Schier, Elizabeth (2008). The knowledge argument and the inadequacy of scientific knowledge. Journal of Consciousness Studies 15 (1):39-62.   (Google)
Abstract: Recently a number of authors have responded to the knowl-edge argument by suggesting that Mary could learn about new physi-cal facts upon release (Flanagan, 1992; Mandik, 2001; Stoljar, 2001; Van Gulick, 1985). A key step in achieving this is a demonstration that there are facts that can be known via colour experience that cannot be learnt scientifically. In this paper I develop an account of scientific and visual knowledge on which there is a difference between the knowledge provided by science and that provided by vision
Shoemaker, Sydney (1984). Churchland on reduction, qualia, and introspection. Philosophy of Science Association 1984.   (Cited by 2 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Skoyles, John R. (ms). The case of Milton: A counter-example to Chalmers' case of Mary.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Chalmers' hard problem confuses within and without-system information. This can be seen in his case of Mary. This neurophysiologist of colour vision raised in a black and white room in an age of a completed neuroscience in spite of her knowing everything about colour vision lacks colour experience. I demonstrate with a counter-example involving Milton, an economist in an age of completed economics, that Chalmers mixes up scientific accountability and accessibility of information processing. There is a profound conceptual difference between the external understanding of information processing in the brain and the internal understanding that participates in it -- as can be illustrated in Aristotles' illusion
Stalnaker, Robert (ms). Knowing where we are, and what it is like.   (Google)
Stemmer, Nathan (1989). Physicalism and the argument from knowledge. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 67 (March):84-91.   (Cited by 7 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Stjernberg, Fredrik (online). Not so epiphenomenal qualia.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Stoljar, Daniel & Nagasawa, Yujin (2003). Introduction to There's Something About Mary. In Peter Ludlow, Daniel Stoljar & Yujin Nagasawa (eds.), There's Something About Mary.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Mary is confined to a black-and-white room, is educated through black-and-white books and through lectures relayed on black-and white television. In this way she learns everything there is to know about the physical nature of the world. She knows all the physical facts about us and our environment, in a wide sense of 'physical' which includes everything in completed physics, chemistry, and neurophysiology, and all there is to know about the causal and relational facts consequent upon all this, including of course functional roles. If physicalism is true, she knows all there is to know. For to suppose otherwise is to suppose that there is more to know than every physical fact, and that is just what physicalis..
Thau, Michael (2007). Thau on perception - response to Jackson. Philosophical Studies 132 (3):607-623.   (Google)
Thomas, Nigel J. T. (online). Mary doesn't know science: On misconceiving a science of consciousness.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Abstract: The so called "Knowledge Argument" of Frank Jackson (1982, 1986) 1 claims to show that there is something about the human mind that must inevitably escape the grasp of physical science: "There are truths about . . . people ( . . . ) which escape the physicalist story" (Jackson, 1986). In effect, materialism is false, and science, as opposed to metaphysics, cannot hope to attain to an understanding of consciousness
Thompson, Evan (1992). Novel colors. Philosophical Studies 68 (3):321-49.   (Cited by 10 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Thompson, David L. (online). On naturalizing intentionality.   (Google)
Abstract: Outline by Section: INTRODUCTION HUSSERL'S TRANSCENDENTAL POSITION Brentano's Notion of Intentionality Frege's Notion of Sinn Husserl's Transcendental Position Intentional Relations are not Causal. Realism is Wrong, Objects must be Meaningful Psychological States are Empirical. Meanings cannot be In-Themselves, but always for an Ego SEARLE'S THEORY OF INTENTIONALITY CONFRONTATION OF SEARLE'S THEORY WITH THE FOUR THESES Searle Intentionalizes or Trivializes Causation Searle is still a Realist Visual Experience is a Thing-In-Itself Intentional States Presented as Stopping Points CONCLUSION
Tye, Michael (2000). Knowing what it is like: The ability hypothesis and the knowledge argument. In Consciousness, Color, and Content. MIT Press.   (Cited by 5 | Google)
Unknown, Unknown (online). The know-how response to Jackson's knowledge argument.   (Google)
van Gulick, Robert (forthcoming). Jackson's change of mind: Representationalism, a priorism, and the knowledge argument. In Ian Ravenscroft (ed.), Minds, Worlds & Conditionals: Themes From the Philosophy of Frank Jackson. Oup.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
van Gulick, Robert (2004). So many ways of saying no to Mary. In Peter Ludlow, Yujin Nagasawa & Daniel Stoljar (eds.), There's Something About Mary: Essays on Phenomenal Consciousness and Frank Jackson's Knowledge Argument. MIT Press.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Vierkant, Tillmann (2002). Zombie Mary and the blue banana. On the compatibility of the 'knowledge argument' with the argument from modality. Psyche 8 (19).   (Google)
Walter, Sven (2002). Terry, Terry, quite contrary. Grazer Philosophische Studien 63 (1):103-22.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In 'Jackson on physical information and qualia'(1984) Terry Horgan defended physicalism against Frank Jackson's Knowledge Argument by raising what later has been called the 'mode of presentation reply'- arguingthatthe Knowledge Argumentis fallacious because itsubtly equivocates on two different readings of 'physical information'. In 'Mary, Mary, quite contrary' (2000) however, George Graham and Terry Horgan maintain that none of the replies against Jackson has yet been successful, not even Horgan's own 1984 rejoinder.Tosubstantiate their claim, they present an allegedly improved version of the Knowledge Argument, the 'Mary Mary Argument' whose default moral is property-dualism. In section 1, I will set the scene by making some clarifying remarks regarding Jackson's original argument. In section 2, I will consider several objections to the most promising physicalist rejoinder to the Knowledge Argument, the mode of presentation reply. In section 3 I will discuss the Mary Mary Argument and propose the indexical account of consciousness that, as it happens, is based on Horgan's own 1984 account as a possible solution. Finally,in section 4, I will argue that to the extent that the Mary Mary Argument exceeds the force of Jackson's original challenge it coincides with Joe Levine's Explanatory Gap Argument
Warner, Richard (1986). A challenge to physicalism. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 64 (September):249-65.   (Cited by 6 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Watkins, Michael (1989). The knowledge argument against the knowledge argument. Analysis 49 (June):158-60.   (Cited by 4 | Annotation | Google)
Wilson, Jessica M. (2002). Review of John Perry's Knowledge, Possibility, and Consciousness. Philosophical Review 111:598-601.   (Google)
Abstract: Perry, in this lucid, deep, and entertaining book (based on his 1999 Jean Nicod lectures), supposes that type-identity physicalism is antecedently plausible, and that rejecting this thesis requires good reason (this is
Witonsky, Abe (2003). A defense of Michael Lockwood's anti-physicalist argument. Journal of Philosophical Research 28:415-419.   (Google)
Zemach, Eddy M. (1990). Churchland, introspection, and dualism. Philosophia 20 (December):3-13.   (Google | More links)

1.3b Zombies and the Conceivability Argument

Alter, Torin (online). Garrett on causal essentialism and zombies.   (Google)
Alter, Torin (2007). Imagining subjective absence: Marcus on zombies. Disputatio 2:91-101.   (Google)
Abstract: Many philosophers accept the conceivability of zombies: creatures that lack consciousness but are physically and functionally identical to conscious human beings. Many also believe that the conceivability of zombies supports their metaphysical possibility. And most agree that if zombies are metaphysically possible, then physicalism is false. So, the claim that zombies are conceivable may have considerable significance.1
Alter, Torin, Reply to Sawyer 2005 central division apa.   (Google)
Abstract: Sawyer characterizes the zombie intuition as the claim that zombies are metaphysically possible. That’s not what I mean by the phrase. On my usage, ‘the zombie intuition’ refers to a conceivability claim: the claim that there’s no a priori incoherence in the hypothesis of a minimal physical/functional duplicate of the actual world but without consciousness, i.e., that PT&~Q is conceivable. The claim is the first step of a two-step argument, the second step of which is to infer the corresponding metaphysical possibility. The inference is controversial, but that’s not my concern here. By ‘the zombie intuition’, I mean the first step, which is a claim of conceivability, not metaphysical possibility
Aranyosi, István (forthcoming). A new argument for mind-brain identity. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science.   (Google)
Abstract: In this paper I undertake the tasks of reconsidering Feigl’s notion of a ‘nomological dangler’ in light of recent discussion about the viability of accommodating phenomenal properties, or qualia, within a physicalist picture of reality, and of constructing an argument to the effect that nomological danglers, including the way qualia are understood to be related to brain states by contemporary dualists, are extremely unlikely. I offer a probabilistic argument to the effect that merely nomological danglers are extremely unlikely, the only probabilistically coherent candidates being ‘anomic danglers’ (not even nomically correlated) and ‘necessary danglers’ (more than merely nomically correlated). After I show, based on similar probabilistic reasoning, that the first disjunct (anomic danglers) is very unlikely, I conclude that the identity thesis is the only remaining candidate for the mental/physical connection. The novelty of the argument is that it brings probabilistic considerations in favour of physicalism, a move that has been neglected in the recent burgeoning literature on the subject.
Aranyosi, Istvan A. (2005). Chalmers' zombie argument. In Type-A Dualism: A Novel Theory of the Mental-Physical Nexus. Dissertation, Central European University.   (Google)
Aranyosi, István (2010). Powers and the mind–body problem. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 18 (1):57 – 72.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper proposes a new line of attack on the conceivability argument for mind-body property dualism, based on the causal account of properties, according to which properties have their conditional powers essentially. It is argued that the epistemic possibility of physical but not phenomenal duplicates of actuality is identical to a metaphysical (understood as broadly logical) possibility, but irrelevant for establishing the falsity of physicalism. The proposed attack is in many ways inspired by a standard, broadly Kripkean approach to epistemic and metaphysical modality
Aydede, Murat, Are phenomenal zombies really conceivable?   (Google)
Abstract: Zombies, as conceived by philosophers these days, are supposed to be creatures that are physically indistinguishable from normal people that nevertheless completely lack phenomenal consciousness. The kind of zombie I want to focus on is one that is molecule- by-molecule identical to a healthy, normal, adult human being living in a world physically like ours — indeed this might be our own actual world. To make things more concrete, pick any such person that you actually know. Let this be John. John is not a zombie. Now consider an exact, perfect, physical replica of John, call him Zhon. Note that because John and Zhon are physically alike, they are also behaviorally and functionally alike. So if you were to encounter Zhon, you could not distinguish him from John. Under the imagined circumstances so far, you would normally expect Zhon to be conscious as well. But let’s stipulate that Zhon has no conscious experiences whatsoever — he’s never had them, nor will he ever have them. So Zhon, according to this stipulation, doesn’t know — indeed cannot know — what it is like to have conscious experiences of any kind. There is nothing it is like to be Zhon. Zhon lacks conscious phenomenology altogether. If Zhon were to be a metaphysically possible creature, he would be a zombie.1 So this is the notion of zombie I would like to focus on. According to many philosophers, Zhon is a possible creature, and that is because Zhon is a conceivable creature. This gives us the argument from zombies against physicalism. Physicalism is the doctrine that says: all that exist is physical through and through, including conscious minds and their conscious experiences. The zombie argument, as we might call it, is a species of conceivability arguments: 1. If Zhon is conceivable, then Zhon is possible. 2. Zhon is conceivable. 3. Hence, Zhon is possible. Now since the choice of Zhon was arbitrary, we can, of course, generalize the argument to all zombies like Zhon — that is, to zombies that are physically indistinguishable, in relevant respects, to healthy, normal, adult human beings..
Aydede, Murat & Guzeldere, Guven (2004). Cognitive architecture, concepts, and introspection: An information-theoretic solution to the problem of phenomenal consciousness. [Journal (on-Line/Unpaginated)] (in Press) 39 (2):197--255.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This essay is a sustained attempt to bring new light to some of the perennial problems in philosophy of mind surrounding phenomenal consciousness and introspection through developing an account of sensory and phenomenal concepts. Building on the information-theoretic framework of Dretske (1981), we present an informational psychosemantics as it applies to what we call sensory concepts, concepts that apply, roughly, to so-called secondary qualities of objects. We show that these concepts have a special informational character and semantic structure that closely tie them to the brain states realizing conscious qualitative experiences. We then develop an account of introspection which exploits this special nature of sensory concepts. The result is a new class of concepts, which, following recent terminology, we call phenomenal concepts: these concepts refer to phenomenal experience itself and are the vehicles used in introspection. On our account, the connection between sensory and phenomenal concepts is very tight: it consists in different semantic uses of the same cognitive structures underlying the sensory concepts, such as the concept of red. Contrary to widespread opinion, we show that information theory contains all the resources to satisfy internalist intuitions about phenomenal consciousness, while not offending externalist ones. A consequence of this account is that it explains and predicts the so-called conceivability arguments against physicalism on the basis of the special nature of sensory and phenomenal concepts. Thus we not only show why physicalism is not threatened by such arguments, but also demonstrate its strength in virtue of its ability to predict and explain away such arguments in a principled way. However, we take the main contribution of this work to be what it provides in addition to a response to those conceivability arguments, namely, a substantive account of the interface between sensory and conceptual systems and the mechanisms of introspection as based on the special nature of the information flow between them
Aydede, Murat & Guzeldere, Guven (2001). Consciousness, conceivability arguments, and perspectivalism: The dialectics of the debate. Communication and Cognition 34 (1-2):99-122.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Aydede, Murat (online). On the conceivability of phenomenal zombies with "sensory-perceptual" systems that are informationally identical to ours.   (Google)
Abstract: The spokesperson in the Pentagon press room announces the availability of a breakthrough new technology. She says it is the first brain-implantable product of a larger project for developing cybernetic organisms (cyborgs) with new and enhanced sensory capabilities that will also have civilian uses. On the screen we see a device fitted on the forehead of a cyborg that appears to have hardwired connections to the brain on several points on the skull. The spokesperson calls the device
Bailey, Andrew R. (ms). Physicalism and the preposterousness of zombies.   (Google)
Bailey, Andrew R. (ms). The unsoundness of arguments from conceivability.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: It is widely suspected that arguments from conceivability, at least in some of their more notorious instances, are unsound. However, the reasons for the failure of conceivability arguments are less well agreed upon, and it remains unclear how to distinguish between sound and unsound instances of the form. In this paper I provide an analysis of the form of arguments from conceivability, and use this analysis to diagnose a systematic weakness in the argument form which reveals all its instances to be, roughly, either uninformative or unsound. I illustrate this conclusion through a consideration of David Chalmers
Bailey, Andrew R., Zombies and epiphenomenalism.   (Google)
Abstract: RÉSUMÉ: Cette étude examine la relation entre la demande que les zombies sont logiquement/métaphysiquement possible et de la position que la conscience phénoménal est epiphenomenal. Il est souvent présumé que la première entraîne ce dernier, et que, par conséquent, toute implausibility dans la notion de conscience epiphenomenalism remet en question la possibilité réelle de zombies. Quatre façons dont les zombist pourrait répondre sont examinées, et je soutiens que les deux les plus fréquemment rencontrés sont insuffisantes, mais les autres—dont l’un est rarement formulés et l’autre nouveaux—sont plus persuasif. Le résultat, cependant, est que le zombist pourraient en effet être confronté à un engagement indésirables à l’epiphenomenalism de conscience
Bailey, Andrew R. (2006). Zombies, epiphenomenalism, and physicalist theories of consciousness. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 36 (4).   (Google)
Bailey, Andrew R. (ms). Zombies support biological theories of consciousness.   (Google)
Balog, Katalin (forthcoming). Acquaintance and the mind-body problem. In Christopher Hill & Simone Gozzano (eds.), Identity Theory. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: In this paper I begin to develop an account of the acquaintance that each of us has with our own conscious states and processes. The account is a speculative proposal about human mental architecture and specifically about the nature of the concepts via which we think in first personish ways about our qualia. In a certain sense my account is neutral between physicalist and dualist accounts of consciousness. As will be clear, a dualist could adopt the account I will offer while maintaining that qualia themselves are non-physical properties. In this case the non-physical nature of qualia may play no role in accounting for the features of acquaintance. But although the account could be used by a dualist, its existence provides enormous support for physicalism. In particular it provides the makings of a positive refutation (i.e., a refutation by construction) of the conceivability arguments and the Mary argument for dualism.
Balog, Katalin (1999). Conceivability, possibility, and the mind-body problem. Philosophical Review 108 (4):497-528.   (Cited by 31 | Google)
Abstract: This paper was chosen by The Philosopher’s Annual as one of the ten best articles appearing in print in 2000. Reprinted in Volume XXIII of The Philosopher’s Annual. In his very influential book David Chalmers argues that if physicalism is true then every positive truth is a priori entailed by the full physical description – this is called “the a priori entailment thesis – but ascriptions of phenomenal consciousness are not so entailed and he concludes that Physicalism is false. As he puts it, “zombies” are metaphysically possible. I attempt to show (I think successfully) that this argument is refuted by considering an analogous argument in the mouth of a zombie. The conclusion of this argument is false so one of the premises is false. I argue at length that this shows that the original conceivability argument also has a false premise and so is invalid.
Balog, Katalin (forthcoming). In Defense of the Phenomenal Concept Strategy. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.   (Google)
Abstract: During the last two decades, several different anti-physicalist arguments based on an epistemic or conceptual gap between the phenomenal and the physical have been proposed. The most promising physicalist line of defense in the face of these arguments – the Phenomenal Concept Strategy – is based on the idea that these epistemic and conceptual gaps can be explained by appeal to the nature of phenomenal concepts rather than the nature of non-physical phenomenal properties. Phenomenal concepts, on this proposal, involve unique cognitive mechanisms, but none that could not be fully physically implemented. David Chalmers has recently presented a Master Argument to show that the Phenomenal Concept Strategy – not just this or that version of it, but any version of it – fails. Chalmers argues that the phenomenal concepts posited by such theories are either not physicalistically explicable, or they cannot explain our epistemic situation with regard to qualia. I argue that it is his Master Argument that fails. My claim is his argument does not provide any new reasons to reject the Phenomenal Concept Strategy. I also argue that, although the Phenomenal Concept Strategy is successful in showing that the physicalist is not rationally compelled to give up physicalism in the light of the anti-physicalist arguments, the anti-physicalist is not rationally compelled to give up the anti-physicalist argument in the light of the Phenomenal Concept Strategy either.
Balog, Katalin, Illuminati, zombies and metaphysical gridlock.   (Google)
Abstract: In this paper I survey the landscape of anti-physicalist arguments and physicalist responses to them. The anti-physicalist arguments I discuss start from a premise about a conceptual, epistemic, or explanatory gap between physical and phenomenal descriptions and conclude from this – on a priori grounds – that physicalism is false. My primary aim is to develop a master argument to counter these arguments. With this master argument in place, it is apparent that there is a puzzling symmetry between dualist attacks on physicalism and physicalist replies. Each position can be developed in a way to defend itself from attacks from the other position. Therefore the debate comes down to which metaphysical framework provides the better overall explanatory/theoretical framework.
Barnes, Gerald W. (2002). Conceivability, explanation, and defeat. Philosophical Studies 108 (3):327-338.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Hill and Levine offer alternative explanations of these conceivabilities, concluding that these conceivabilities are thereby defeated as evidence. However, this strategy fails because their explanations generalize to all conceivability judgments concerning phenomenal states. Consequently, one could defend absolutely any theory of phenomenal states against conceivability arguments in just this way. This result conflicts with too many of our common sense beliefs about the evidential value of conceivability with respect to phenomenal states. The general moral is that the application of such principles of explanatory defeat is neither simple nor straightforward
Bealer, George (2002). Modal epistemology and the rationalist renaissance. In Tamar S. Gendler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Conceivability and Possibility. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 21 | Google)
Abstract: The paper begins with a clarification of the notions of intuition (and, in particular, modal intuition), modal error, conceivability, metaphysical possibility, and epistemic possibility. It is argued that two-dimensionalism is the wrong framework for modal epistemology and that a certain nonreductionist approach to the theory of concepts and propositions is required instead. Finally, there is an examination of moderate rationalism
Bealer, George (1987). The philosophical limits of scientific essentialism. Philosophical Perspectives 1:289-365.   (Cited by 44 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Scientific essentialism is the view that some necessities (e.g., water = H2O) can be known only with the aid of empirical science. The thesis of the paper is that scientific essentialism does not extend to the central questions of philosophy and that these questions can be answered a priori. The argument is that the evidence required for the defense of scientific essentialism (e.g., twin earth intuitions) is reliable only if the intuitions required by philosophy to answer its central questions is also reliable. Included is an outline of a modal reliabilist theory of basic evidence and a concept-possession account of the reliability of a priori intuition
Bennett, Karen (online). Zombies everywhere!   (Google)
Bokulich, Peter (ms). Putting zombies to rest: The role of dynamics in reduction.   (Google)
Abstract: I argue that property dualism is not supported by the purported logical possibility of qualitative zombies. Chalmers
Botterell, Andrew (2001). Conceiving what is not there. Journal of Consciousness Studies 8 (8):21-42.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Braddon-Mitchell, David (2003). Qualia and analytical conditionals. Journal of Philosophy 100 (3):111-135.   (Cited by 12 | Google | More links)
Bringsjord, Selmer (1995). In defense of impenetrable zombies. Journal of Consciousness Studies 2 (4):348-351.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Bringsjord, Selmer (1999). The zombie attack on the computational conception of mind. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (1):41-69.   (Cited by 14 | Google | More links)
Brown, Richard (2010). Deprioritizing the A Priori Arguments against Physicalism. Journal of Consciousness Studies 17 (4-5).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In this paper I argue that a priori arguments fail to present any real problem for physicalism. They beg the question against physicalism in the sense that the argument will only seem compelling if one is already assuming that qualitative properties are nonphysical. To show this I will present the reverse-zombie and reverse-knowledge arguments. The only evidence against physicalism is a priori arguments, but there are also a priori arguments against dualism of exactly the same variety. Each of these parity arguments has premises that are just as intuitively plausible, and it cannot be the case that both the traditional scenarios and the reverse-scenarios are all ideally conceivable. Given this one set must be merely prima facie conceivable and only empirical methods will tell us which is which. So, by the time a priori methodology will be of any use it will be too late.
Brown, Richard (2007). Review of Zombies and consciousness by Robert Kirk. Philosophical Psychology 20 (3):12-15.   (Google)
Abstract: This book covers a vast amount of material in the philosophy of mind, which makes it difficult to do justice to its tightly argued and nuanced details. It does, however, have two overarching goals that are visible, so to speak, from space. In the first half of the book Kirk aims to show that, contra his former self, philosophical zombies are not conceivable. By this he means that the zombie scenario as usually constructed contains an unnoticed contradiction, and explaining the contradiction reveals a radical misconception about the nature of phenomenal consciousness. His second aim of the book is to construct a theory of perceptual-phenomenal consciousness that avoids this contradiction. The anti-zombie argument can be stated rather easily. According to the ‘zombist’ there can be a creature that is a molecule-for-molecule-duplicate of me and yet lacks phenomenal consciousness. At the same time they want to hold that we have ‘epistemic access’ to our phenomenal consciousness. These two claims are not consistent with each other. To see why, imagine a zombie world that is identical to ours except in respect of phenomenal consciousness. Since that world is just like ours we can assume that it is causally closed under the physical. Now, continues Kirk, it should be possible to add to that world whatever it is that the zombist thinks will transform it into a world that does have phenomenal consciousness. But since whatever we added would have to be nonphysical, since their world is identical to ours (excepting consciousness), and so could not interact causally with the physical world (which is closed under the physical), it follows that we could not know anything about these ‘e-qualia’. Therefore, we could not have ‘epistemic access’ to them. To make this vivid he offers what he calls the ‘sole-pictures’ argument. Again, consider our zombie world. Let’s add whatever it is that the zombist thinks will transform it into a world like ours. Now let’s imagine that by a “strange shift in the natural laws” of the zombie world the visual processes that in me cause e-qualia instead cause....
Brueckner, Anthony L. (2001). Chalmers' conceivability argument for dualism. Analysis 61 (3):187-193.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In The Conscious Mind, D. Chalmers appeals to his semantic framework in order to show that conceivability, as employed in his "zombie" argument for dualism, is sufficient for genuine possibility. I criticize this attempt
Chalmers, David J. (1996). Can consciousness be reductively explained? In The Conscious Mind. Oxford University Press.   (Annotation | Google)
Chalmers, David J. (2002). Does conceivability entail possibility? In Tamar S. Gendler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Conceivability and Possibility. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 70 | Google | More links)
Abstract: There is a long tradition in philosophy of using a priori methods to draw conclusions about what is possible and what is necessary, and often in turn to draw conclusions about matters of substantive metaphysics. Arguments like this typically have three steps: first an epistemic claim (about what can be known or conceived), from there to a modal claim (about what is possible or necessary), and from there to a metaphysical claim (about the nature of things in the world)
Chalmers, David J. (2004). Imagination, indexicality, and intensions. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (1):182-90.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract: John Perry's book Knowledge, Possibility, and Consciousness is a lucid and engaging defense of a physicalist view of consciousness against various anti-physicalist arguments. In what follows, I will address Perry's responses to the three main anti-physicalist arguments he discusses: the zombie argument (focusing on imagination), the knowledge argument (focusing on indexicals), and the modal argument (focusing on intensions)
Chalmers, David J. (manuscript). Mind and modality. .   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: What follows are compressed versions of three lectures on the subject of "Mind and Modality", given at Princeton University the week of October 12-16, 1998. The first two form a series; the third stands alone to some extent. All are philosophically technical, and probably of interest mainly to philosophers. I hope that they make sense, at least to those familiar with my book _The Conscious Mind_ . Lecture 1 recapitulates some of the material in the book in a somewhat different form, and adds some further material on conditionals and on Kripke. Note that section has a more or less definitive formalization of the anti-materialist argument from the book (lots of people have asked for this). Lecture 2 pushes deeper into the heart of modality, further investigating the conceivability/possibility relationship and the epistemology of modality (with some material on the scrutability of truth in general), and arguing for a sort of modal rationalism. Lecture 3 gives an analysis of the content of beliefs about experiences, and applies this to a number of epistemological issues, including incorrigibility and the dialectic on "The Myth of the Given"
Chalmers, David J. (1999). Materialism and the metaphysics of modality. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (2):473-96.   (Cited by 55 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This appeared in Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59:473-93, as a response to four papers in a symposium on my book The Conscious Mind . Most of it should be comprehensible without having read the papers in question. This paper is for an audience of philosophers and so is relatively technical. It will probably also help to have read some of the book. (There is a corresponding precis of the book, written for the symposium.) The papers I'm responding to are: Chris Hill & Brian McLaughlin, There are fewer things in reality than are dreamt of in Chalmers' philosophy Brian Loar, David Chalmers' The Conscious Mind Sydney Shoemaker, On David Chalmers' The Conscious Mind Stephen Yablo, Concepts and consciousness Contents
Chalmers, David J. (1996). Naturalistic dualism. In The Conscious Mind. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 2 | Annotation | Google)
Chalmers, David J. (1993). Self-ascription without qualia: A case-study. Behavioral And Brain Sciences 16 (1):35-36.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In Section 5 of his interesting article, Goldman suggests that the consideration of imaginary cases can be valuable in the analysis of our psychological concepts. In particular, he argues that we can imagine a system that is isomorphic to us under any functional description, but which lacks qualitative mental states, such as pains and color sensations. Whether or not such a being is empirically possible, it certainly seems to be logically possible, or conceptually coherent. Goldman argues from this possibility to the conclusion that our concepts of qualitative mental states cannot be analyzed entirely in functional terms
Chalmers, David J. (forthcoming). The two-dimensional argument against materialism. In Brian P. McLaughlin & Sven Walter (eds.), Oxford Handbook to the Philosophy of Mind. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 11 | Google | More links)
Abstract: A number of popular arguments for dualism start from a premise about an epistemic gap between physical truths about truths about consciousness, and infer an ontological gap between physical processes and consciousness. Arguments of this sort include the conceivability argument, the knowledge argument, the explanatory-gap argument, and the property dualism argument. Such arguments are often resisted on the grounds that epistemic premises do not entail ontological conclusion. My view is that one can legitimately infer ontological conclusions from epistemic premises, if one is very careful about how one reasons. To do so, the best way is to reason first from epistemic premises to modal conclusions (about necessity and possibility), and from there to ontological conclusions. Here, the crucial issue is the link between the epistemic and modal domains. How can one reason from theses about what is knowable or conceivable to theses about what is necessary or possible? To bridge the epistemic and modal domains, the framework of two-dimensional semantics can play a central role. I have used this framework in earlier work (Chalmers 1996) to mount an argument against materialism. Here, I want to revisit the argument, laying it out in a more explicit and careful form, and responding to a number of objections. In what follows I will concentrate mostly on the conceivability argument. I think that very similar considerations apply to the other arguments mentioned above, however. In the final section of the paper, I show how this analysis might yield a unified treatment of a number of anti-materialist arguments
Chalmers, David (unknown). Zombies on the web. .   (Google)
Abstract: Zombies are hypothetical creatures of the sort that philosophers have been known to cherish. A zombie is physically identical to a normal human being, but completely lacks conscious experience. Zombies look and behave like the conscious beings that we know and love, but "all is dark inside." There is nothing it is like to be a zombie
Churchland, Paul M. (2004). Philosophy of mind meets logical theory: Perry on neo-dualism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (1):199-206.   (Google | More links)
Cohnitz, Daniel (online). The logic of negative conceivability.   (Google)
Abstract: Analytic epistemology is traditionally interested in rational reconstructions of cognitive pro- cesses. The purpose of these rational reconstructions is to make plain how a certain cognitive process might eventually result in knowledge or justi?ed beliefs, etc., if we pre-theoretically think that we have such knowledge or such justi?ed beliefs. Typically a rational reconstruction assumes some (more or less) unproblematic basis of knowledge and some justi?cation-preserving inference pattern and then goes on to show how these two su ce to generate the explicandum
Cottrell, Allin (1999). Sniffing the camembert: On the conceivability of zombies. Journal of Consciousness Studies 6:4-12.   (Cited by 13 | Google)
Dennett, Daniel C. (1995). The unimagined preposterousness of zombies. Journal of Consciousness Studies 2 (4):322-26.   (Cited by 37 | Google)
Abstract: Knock-down refutations are rare in philosophy, and unambiguous self-refutations are even rarer, for obvious reasons, but sometimes we get lucky. Sometimes philosophers clutch an insupportable hypothesis to their bosoms and run headlong over the cliff edge. Then, like cartoon characters, they hang there in mid-air, until they notice what they have done and gravity takes over. Just such a boon is the philosophers' concept of a zombie, a strangely attractive notion that sums up, in one leaden lump, almost everything that I think is wrong with current thinking about consciousness. Philosophers ought to have dropped the zombie like a hot potato, but since they persist in their embrace, this gives me a golden opportunity to focus attention on the most seductive error in current thinking
Dennett, Daniel C. (2001). The zombic hunch: Extinction of an intuition? In Anthony O'Hear (ed.), Philosophy at the New Millennium. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 14 | Google | More links)
de Quincey, Christian (2000). Conceiving the 'inconceivable'? Journal of Consciousness Studies 7 (4):67-81.   (Cited by 4 | Google)
Diaz-Leon, Esa (2008). Defending the phenomenal concept strategy. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 86 (4):597 – 610.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: One of the main strategies against conceivability arguments is the so-called phenomenal concept strategy, which aims to explain the epistemic gap between physical and phenomenal truths in terms of the special features of phenomenal concepts. Daniel Stoljar has recently argued that the phenomenal concept strategy has failed to provide a successful explanation of this epistemic gap. In this paper my aim is to defend the phenomenal concept strategy from his criticisms. I argue that Stoljar has misrepresented the resources of the strategy, which can indeed accomplish the required explanatory task, once it is properly understood
Diaz-Leon, Esa, The conceivability argument against behaviourism and the phenomenal concept strategy.   (Google)
Abstract: The phenomenal concept strategy is one of the most attractive responses to the so-called conceivability arguments. A crucial step in these arguments is the inference from conceivability to possibility. The phenomenal concept strategy attacks this inference from conceivability to possibility: they argue that there is an alternative explanation of the conceivability of zombies, which does not involve the possibility of zombies. This alternative explanation appeals to special features of phenomenal concepts in order to explain the conceivability of zombies. Daniel Stoljar has recently argued that if the phenomenal concept strategy was a good strategy against the conceivability argument against physicalism, it would also be a good strategy against the conceivability argument against behaviourism. But he claims that the latter conceivability argument is sound, and therefore the phenomenal concept strategy cannot be correct. In this paper I show how the phenomenal concept strategy can respond to this objection
Dietrich, Eric & Gillies, Anthony S. (2001). Consciousness and the limits of our imaginations. Synthese 126 (3):361-381.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Dietrich, Eric (1998). It only seems as if zombies are logically possible, or how consciousness hides the truth of materialism: A critical review of The Conscious Mind. Minds and Machines 8 (3).   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Fiocco, M. Oreste (2007). Conceivability and epistemic possibility. Erkenntnis 67 (3).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: The notion of conceivability has traditionally been regarded as crucial to an account of modal knowledge. Despite its importance to modal epistemology, there is no received explication of conceivability. In recent discussions, some have attempted to explicate the notion in terms of epistemic possibility. There are, however, two notions of epistemic possibility, a more familiar one and a novel one. I argue that these two notions are independent of one another. Both are irrelevant to an account of modal knowledge on the predominant view of modal reality. Only the novel notion is relevant and apt on the competing view of modal reality; but this latter view is problematic in light of compelling counterexamples. Insufficient care regarding the independent notions of epistemic possibility can lead to two problems: a gross problem of conflation and a more subtle problem of obscuring a crucial fact of modal epistemology. Either problem needlessly hampers efforts to develop an adequate account of modal knowledge. I conclude that the familiar notion of epistemic possibility (and the very term ‘epistemic possibility’) should be eschewed in the context of modal epistemology
Fish, William C. (1999). Problems with actual-sequence incompatibilism. Philosophical Writings 12:47-52.   (Google)
Frankish, Keith (2007). The anti-zombie argument. Philosophical Quarterly 57 (229):650–666.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In recent years the 'zombie argument' has come to occupy a central role in the case against physicalist views of consciousness, in large part because of the powerful advocacy it has received from David Chalmers.1 In this paper I seek to neutralize it by showing that a parallel argument can be run for physicalism, an argument turning on the conceivability of what I shall call anti-zombies. I shall argue that the result is a stand-off, and that the zombie argument offers no independent reason to reject physicalism
Garrett, Brian Jonathan (2009). Causal essentialism versus the zombie worlds. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 39 (1):pp. 93-112.   (Google)
Geirsson, Heimir (2005). Conceivability and defeasible modal justification. Philosophical Studies 122 (3):279-304.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper advances the thesis that we can justifiably believe philosophically interesting possibility statements. The first part of the paper critically discusses van Inwagens skeptical arguments while at the same time laying some of the foundation for a positive view. The second part of the paper advances a view of conceivability in terms of imaginability, where imaginging can be propositional, pictorial, or a combination of the two, and argues that conceivability can, and often does, provide us with justified beliefs of what is metaphysically possible. The notion of scenarios is developed, as is an account of how filling out scenarios can uncover a defeater or, in many cases, strengthen the justification for the relevant possibility statement
Gendler, Tamar S. & Hawthorne, John (eds.) (2002). Conceivability and Possibility. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 40 | Google)
Abstract: The capacity to represent things to ourselves as possible plays a crucial role both in everyday thinking and in philosophical reasoning; this volume offers much-needed philosophical illumination of conceivability, possibility, and the relations between them
Gendler, Tamar S. & Hawthorne, John (2002). Introduction: Conceivability and possibility. In T. Genler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Conceivability and Possibility. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 5 | Google)
Abstract: To what extent and how is conceivability a guide to possibility? This essay explores general philosophical issues raised by this question, and critically surveys responses to it by Descartes, Hume, Kripke and "two-dimensionalists."
Gertler, Brie (2002). Explanatory reduction, conceptual analysis, and conceivability arguments about the mind. Noûs 36 (1):22-49.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The current stand-off between reductionists and anti-reductionists about the mental has sparked a long-overdue reexamination of key issues in philosophi- cal methodology.1 The resulting debate promises to advance our understand- ing of how empirical discoveries bear on the numerous philosophical problems which involve the analysis or reduction of kinds. The parties to this debate disagree about how, and to what extent, conceptual facts contribute to justify- ing explanatory reductions
Goff, Philip (2010). Ghosts and sparse properties: Why physicalists have more to fear from ghosts than zombies. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81 (1):119-139.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Zombies are bodies without minds: creatures that are physically identical to actual human beings, but which have no conscious experience. Much of the consciousness literature focuses on considering how threatening philosophical reflection on such creatures is to physicalism. There is not much attention given to the converse possibility, the possibility of minds without bodies, that is, creatures who are conscious but whose nature is exhausted by their being conscious. We can call such a ‘purely conscious’ creature a ghost
Goff, Philip (2007). Kirk on empirical physicalism - discussion. Ratio 20 (1):122-129.   (Google | More links)
Guzeldere, Guven (1995). Varieties of zombiehood. Journal of Consciousness Studies 2 (4):326-33.   (Cited by 10 | Google)
Hanrahan, Rebecca Roman (2009). Consciousness and modal empiricism. Philosophia 37 (2).   (Google)
Abstract: David Chalmers supports his contention that there is a possible world populated by our zombie twins by arguing for the assumption that conceivability entails possibility. But, I argue, the modal epistemology he sets forth, ‘modal rationalism,’ ignores the problem of incompleteness and relies on an idealized notion of conceivability. As a consequence, this epistemology can’t justify our quotidian judgments of possibility, let alone those judgments that concern the mind/body connection. Working from the analogy that the imagination is to the possible as perception is to the actual, I set forth a competing epistemology, ‘modal empiricism.’ This epistemology survives the incompleteness objection and allows some of our everyday modal judgments to be justified. But this epistemology can’t justify the claim that Zombie World is possible, which leaves Chalmers’s property dualism without the support it needs
Handrahan, Rebecca (2005). Epistemology and possibility. Dialogue 44 (4):627-652.   (Google)
Harnad, Stevan (1994). Guest editorial: Why and how we are not zombies. Journal of Consciousness Studies 1 (2):164-167.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Harnad, Stevan (1994). Why and how we are not zombies. Journal of Consciousness Studies 1:164-67.   (Cited by 65 | Google | More links)
Abstract: A robot that is functionally indistinguishable from us may or may not be a mindless Zombie. There will never be any way to know, yet its functional principles will be as close as we can ever get to explaining the mind
Harnad, Stevan (1995). Why and how we are not zombies. [Journal (Paginated)].   (Google | More links)
Abstract: A robot that is functionally indistinguishable from us may or may not be a mindless Zombie. There will never be any way to know, yet its functional principles will be as close as we can ever get to explaining the mind
Hauser, Larry (online). Revenge of the zombies.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: Zombies recently conjured by Searle and others threaten civilized (i.e., materialistic) philosophy of mind and scientific psychology as we know it. Humanoid beings that behave like us and may share our functional organizations and even, perhaps, our neurophysiological makeups without qualetative conscious experiences, zombies seem to meet every materialist condition for thought on offer and yet -- the wonted intuitions go -- are still disqualefied (disqualified for lack of qualia) from being thinking things. I have a plan. Other zombies -- good (qualia eating) zombies -- can battle their evil (behavior eating) cousins to a standoff. Perhaps even defeat them. Familiar zombies and supersmart zombies resist disqualefication, making the world safe, again, for materialism. Behavioristic materialism. Alas for functionalism, good zombies still eat programs. Alas for identity theory, all zombies -- every B movie fan knows -- eat brains
Havel, Ivan (1999). Living in conceivable worlds. Foundations of Science 3 (2):375-394.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Certain cognitive and philosophical aspects of the concept of conceivability with intended or established diversion from (putative) reality are discussed. The “coherence gap problem” arises when certain fragments of the real world are replaced with imaginary situations while most details are (intentionally or not) ignored. Another issue, “the spectator problem”, concerns the participation of the conceiver himself in the world conceived. Three different examples of conceivability are used to illustrate our points, namely thought experiments in physics, a hypothetical world devoid of consciousness (zombie world), and virtual reality
Hawthorne, John (2002). Advice for physicalists. Philosophical Studies 109 (1):17-52.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Hill, Christopher S. (1998). Chalmers on the apriority of modal knowledge. Analysis 58 (1):20-26.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Hill, Christopher S. (1997). Imaginability, conceivability, possibility, and the mind-body problem. Philosophical Studies 87 (1):61-85.   (Cited by 62 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Hill, Christopher S. & Mclaughlin, Brian P. (1999). There are fewer things in reality than are dreamt of in Chalmers's philosophy. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (2):445-454.   (Cited by 43 | Google | More links)
Hodges, Donald C. (1965). Minding, minds and bodies. Pacific Philosophy Forum 3 (February):74-86.   (Google)
Horowitz, Amir (2009). Turning the zombie on its head. Synthese 170 (1).   (Google)
Abstract: This paper suggests a critique of the zombie argument that bypasses the need to decide on the truth of its main premises, and specifically, avoids the need to enter the battlefield of whether conceivability entails metaphysical possibility. It is argued that if we accept, as the zombie argument’s supporters would urge us, the assumption that an ideal reasoner can conceive of a complete physical description of the world without conceiving of qualia, the general principle that conceivability entails metaphysical possibility, and the general principle that for any s and t the metaphysical possibility of s &  − t entails that s does not necessitate t, we have to conclude not that materialism is false but rather that either materialism or the “mental paint” (or “phenomenist”) conception of phenomenality is false. And further, given the initial advantages of materialism, the fact that proponents of the zombie argument are not allowed to rely on arguments against materialism in confronting this dilemma, and difficulties with arguments in favor of phenomenism, we find ourselves pushed to reject the mental paint conception rather than materialism. Or at any rate, it is hard to see how the proponent of the zombie argument can carry the burden of proof that lies with her. Thus, whether or not those premises of the zombie argument are true, the argument fails to refute materialism
Huenemann, Charles (2004). The Sage meets the zombie: Spinoza's wise man and Chalmers' The Conscious Mind. Studia Spinozana 14:21-33.   (Google)
Jacobson-Horowitz, Hilla & Horowitz, Amir (2008). Conceivability, higher order patterns, and physicalism. Acta Analytica 23 (4).   (Google)
Johnston, Mark (ms). It necessarily ain't so.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Kallestrup, Jesper (2006). Physicalism, conceivability and strong necessities. Synthese 151 (2):273-295.   (Google | More links)
Kartik, Navin (2000). In the hands of zombies. The Dualist 7 (1):5-19.   (Google)
Kearns, Mike (online). Could Daniel Dennett be a zombie?   (Google)
Kirk, Robert E. (1977). Reply to Don Locke on zombies and materialism. Mind 86 (April):262-4.   (Cited by 1 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Kirk, Robert E. (1974). Sentience and behaviour. Mind 81 (January):43-60.   (Cited by 15 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Kirk, Robert (1999). The inaugural address: Why there couldn't be zombies. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 73 (1):1–16.   (Google | More links)
Kirk, Robert (2008). The inconceivability of zombies. Philosophical Studies 139 (1).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: If zombies were conceivable in the sense relevant to the ‘conceivability argument’ against physicalism, a certain epiphenomenalistic conception of consciousness—the ‘e-qualia story’—would also be conceivable. But (it is argued) the e-qualia story is not conceivable because it involves a contradiction. The non-physical ‘e-qualia’ supposedly involved could not perform cognitive processing, which would therefore have to be performed by physical processes; and these could not put anyone into ‘epistemic contact’ with e-qualia, contrary to the e-qualia story. Interactionism does not enable zombists to escape these conclusions
Kirk, Robert E. (1999). Why there couldn't be zombies. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 73:1-16.   (Google)
Kirk, Robert E. (online). Zombies. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.   (Cited by 5 | Google)
Kirk, Robert E. (2006). Zombies and Consciousness. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Zombies and minimal physicalism -- The case for zombies -- Zapping the zombie idea -- What has to be done -- Deciders -- Decision, control, and integration -- De-sophisticating the framework -- Direct activity -- Gap? What gap? -- Survival of the fittest.
Kirk, Robert E. (1974). Zombies vs materialists. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 48:135-52.   (Cited by 27 | Annotation | Google)
Koch, Christof & Crick, Francis (2001). On the zombie within. Nature 411 (6840):893-893.   (Cited by 22 | Google | More links)
Kraemer, Eric Russert (1980). Imitation-man and the 'new' epiphenomenalism. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 10 (September):479-487.   (Annotation | Google)
Kriegel, Uriah (2008). Review of D. Stoljar, Ignorance and Imagination. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 86:515-519.   (Google)
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Latham, Noa (1998). Chalmers on the addition of consciousness to the physical world. Philosophical Studies 98 (1):71-97.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Levine, Joseph (1998). Conceivability and the metaphysics of mind. Noûs 32 (4):449-480.   (Cited by 33 | Google | More links)
Levin, Janet (2004). The evidential status of philosophical intuition. Philosophical Studies 121 (3):193-224.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Philosophers have traditionally held that claims about necessities and possibilities are to be evaluated by consulting our philosophical intuitions; that is, those peculiarly compelling deliverances about possibilities that arise from a serious and reflective attempt to conceive of counterexamples to these claims. But many contemporary philosophers, particularly naturalists, argue that intuitions of this sort are unreliable, citing examples of once-intuitive, but now abandoned, philosophical theses, as well as recent psychological studies that seem to establish the general fallibility of intuition.In the first two sections of this paper, I evaluate these arguments, and also the counter-arguments of contemporary defenders of tradition. In the next two sections, I sketch an alternative account of the role of philosophical intuitions that incorporates elements of traditionalism and naturalism - and defend it against other such views. In the final section, however, I discuss intuitions about conscious experience, and acknowledge that my view may not extend comfortably to this case. This may seem unfortunate, since so much contemporary discussion of the epistemology of modality seems motivated by worries about the mind-body problem, and informed by the position one wishes to endorse. But, as I argue, if conscious experience is indeed an exception to the view I suggest in this paper, it is an exception that proves - and can illuminate - the rule
Lloyd, Dan (online). Twilight of the zombies.   (Google)
Abstract: A philosophical zombie is a being indistinguishable from an ordinary human in every observable respect, but lacking subjective consciousness. Zombiehood implies *linguistic indiscriminability*, the zombie tendency to talk and even do philosophy of mind in language indiscriminable from ordinary discourse. Zombies thus speak *Zombish*, indistinguishable from English but radically distinct in reference for mental terms. The fate of zombies ultimately depends on whether Zombish can be consistently interpreted. If it can be interpreted consistently, then zombies remain possible, but no test could ever reveal whether anyone (oneself included) is speaking Zombish. Any materialist theory of consciousness is therefore already a theory in Zombish, and is equally confirmable in its human language edition (applicable to humans) and its zombie-language edition (applicable to zombies). On the other hand, if Zombish cannot be consistently interpreted, then the zombies described in Zombish are logically impossible. Either way, the search for a materialistic theory of consciousness should be untroubled by the (possible) zombies among us
Loar, Brian (2003). Qualia, properties, modality. Philosophical Issues 1 (1):113-29.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Locke, Don (1976). Zombies, schizophrenics, and purely physical objects. Mind 83 (January):97-99.   (Cited by 2 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Luis Bermúdez, José (2007). Zombies and consciousness – Robert Kirk. Philosophical Quarterly 57 (227):306–308.   (Google | More links)
Lycan, William G. (2007). Stalnaker on zombies. Philosophical Studies 133 (3):473-479.   (Google | More links)
Lycan, William G. (2003). Vs. a new a priorist argument for dualism. Philosophical Issues 13 (1):130-47.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Back in the late 1950s, a wonderful thing happened to metaphysics
Lynch, Michael P. (2006). Zombies and the case of the phenomenal pickpocket. Synthese 149 (1):37-58.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: A prevailing view in contemporary philosophy of mind is that zombies are logically possible. I argue, via a thought experiment, that if this prevailing view is correct, then I could be transformed into a zombie. If I could be transformed into a zombie, then surprisingly, I am not certain that I am conscious. Regrettably, this is not just an idiosyncratic fact about my psychology; I think you are in the same position. This means that we must revise or replace some important positions in the philosophy of mind. We could embrace radical skepticism about our own consciousness, or maintain the complete and total infallibility of our beliefs about our own phenomenal experiences. I argue that we should actually reject the logical possibility of zombies
Mandik, Pete (ms). Transcending zombies.   (Google)
Abstract: I develop advice to the reductionist about consciousness in the form of a transcendental argument that depends crucially on the sorts of knowledge claims concerning consciousness that, as crucial elements in the anti-reductionists’ epistemicgap arguments, the anti-reductionist will readily concede. The argument that I develop goes as follows. P1. If I know that I am not a zombie, then phenomenal character is (a certain kind of) conceptualized egocentric content. P2. I know that I am not a zombie. P3. Phenomenal character is (a certain kind of) conceptualized egocentric content. P4. Fixing my physical properties fixes my conceptualized egocentric contents. C. Fixing my physical properties fixes my phenomenal properties
Marton, Peter (2000). The murderer returns: A reply on zombies to Jamie Phillips. Southwest Philosophy Review 16 (2):195-200.   (Google)
Marcus, Eric (2004). Why zombies are inconceivable. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (3):477-90.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Abstract: I argue that zombies are inconceivable. More precisely, I argue that the conceivability-intuition that is used to demonstrate their possibility has been misconstrued. Thought experiments alleged to feature zombies founder on the fact that, on the one hand, they _must_ involve first-person imagining, and yet, on the other hand, _cannot_. Philosophers who take themselves to have imagined zombies have unwittingly conflated imagining a creature who lacks consciousness with imagining a creature without also imagining the consciousness it may or may not possess
Marton, Peter (1998). Zombies versus materialists: The battle for conceivability. Southwest Philosophy Review 14 (1):131-138.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Matson, Wallace I. (ms). Logical possibility, laws of nature, and mind in the history of philosophy.   (Google)
Mathieson, Chris (2000). Reining in Chalmers: On the logical possibility of zombies. Canadian Undergraduate Journal of Philosophy.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Matson, Wallace I. (2003). Zombies begone! Against Chalmers' mind/brain dualism. Graduate Faculty Philosophy Journal 24 (1):123-136.   (Google)
McCarthy, John (1995). Todd Moody's zombies. Journal Of Consciousness Studies 2 (4):345-347.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: From the AI point of view, consciousness must be regarded as a collection of interacting processes rather than the unitary object of much philosophical speculation. We ask what kinds of propositions and other entities need to be designed for consciousness to be useful to an animal or a machine. We thereby assert that human consciousness is useful to human functioning and not just and epiphenomenon. Zombies in the sense of Todd Moody's article are merely the victims of Moody's prejudices. To behave like humans, zombies will need what Moody might call pseudo-consciousness, but useful pseudo-consciousness will share all the observable qualities of human consciousness including what the zombie will be able to report. Robots will require a pseudo-consciousness with many of the intellectual qualities of human consciousness but will function successfully with few if any human emotional conscious qualities if that is how we choose to build them
Melnyk, Andrew (2001). Physicalism unfalsified: Chalmers' inconclusive argument for dualism. In Carl Gillett & Barry M. Loewer (eds.), Physicalism and its Discontents. Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Melnyk, Andrew (2001). Physicalism unfalsified, chalmer's inconclusive conceivability argument. In Carl Gillett & Barry M. Loewer (eds.), Physicalism and its Discontents. Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Menzies, Peter (1998). Possibility and conceivability: A response-dependent account of their connections. In Roberto Casati (ed.), European Review of Philosophy, Volume 3: Response-Dependence. Stanford: CSLI Publications.   (Cited by 7 | Google)
Abstract: In the history of modern philosophy systematic connections were assumed to hold between the modal concepts of logical possibility and necessity and the concept of conceivability. However, in the eyes of many contemporary philosophers, insuperable objections face any attempt to analyze the modal concepts in terms of conceivability. It is important to keep in mind that a philosophical explanation of modality does not have to take the form of a reductive analysis. In this paper I attempt to provide a response-dependent account of the modal concepts in terms of conceivability along the lines of a nonreductive model of explanation
Moody, Todd C. (1994). Conversations with zombies. Journal of Consciousness Studies 1 (2):196-200.   (Cited by 31 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Moody, Todd C. (1995). Why zombies won't stay dead. Journal of Consciousness Studies 2 (4):365-372.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Murphy, Peter (2006). Reliability connections between conceivability and inconceivability. Dialectica 60 (2):195-205.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Nagel, Thomas (1998). Conceiving the impossible and the mind-body problem. Philosophy 73 (285):337-52.   (Cited by 22 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Intuitions based on the first-person perspective can easily mislead us about what is and is not conceivable.1 This point is usually made in support of familiar reductionist positions on the mind-body problem, but I believe it can be detached from that approach. It seems to me that the powerful appearance of contingency in the relation between the functioning of the physical organism and the conscious mind -- an appearance that depends directly or indirectly on the first- person perspective -- must be an illusion. But the denial of this contingency should not take the form of a reductionist account of consciousness of the usual type, whereby the logical gap between the mental and the physical is closed by conceptual analysis -- in effect, by analyzing the mental in terms of the physical (however elaborately this is done -- and I count functionalism as such a theory, along with the topic-neutral causal role analyses of mental concepts from which it descends)
Nagasawa, Yujin (2008). Zombies and consciousness - by Robert Kirk. Philosophical Books 49 (2):170-171.   (Google)
Onof, Christian J. (2008). Property dualism, epistemic normativity and the limits of naturalism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 76 (1):60-85.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper examines some consequences of the (quasi-)epiphenomenalism implied by a property dualistic view of phenomenal consciousness. The focus is upon the variation of phenomenal content over time. A thought-experiment is constructed to support two claims. The weaker claim exhibits an incompatibility which arises in certain logically possible situations between a conscious subjecfs epistemicnorms and the requirement that one be aware of one’s conscious experience. This could be interpreted as providing some epistemic grounds for the postulation of bridging laws between the physical/functional and phenomenal domains. The stronger claim has it that the ontology of property dualism is not properly able to account for the certainty I have of being phenomenally conscious. The problem is viewed as resulting from the neglect of the intensional context involved in a proper representation of the argument for property dualism. It is argued that only a transcendental move can do justice to this certainty I have
Pereboom, Derk (web). Consciousness and introspective inaccuracy. In L. M. Jorgensen & S. Newlands (eds.), Appearance, Reality, and the Good: Themes From the Philosophy of Robert M. Adams. Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Perkins, Moreland (1970). Matter, sensation, and understanding. American Philosophical Quarterly 8:1-12.   (Cited by 3 | Annotation | Google)
Perkins, Moreland (1971). Sentience. Journal of Philosophy 68 (June):329-37.   (Annotation | Google | More links)
Perry, John (2001). The zombie argument. In Knowledge, Possibility, and Consciousness. MIT Press.   (Google)
Phillips, Jamie L. (1998). A problem with Marton's zombies vs. materialists: The battle for conceivability. Southwest Philosophy Review 14 (2):175-178.   (Google)
Phillips, Jamie L. (1999). Can imagination provide prima facie justification for possibility? A problem for Tye. Southwest Philosophy Review 15 (1):149-156.   (Google)
Phillips, Matthew (ms). Why positive and negative conceivability can't save the conceivability-possibility link.   (Google)
Phillips, Jamie L. (2003). Why you shouldn't believe in zombies (or their friends!). Southwest Philosophy Review 19 (1):231-238.   (Google)
Piccinini, Gualtiero (2008). Access denied to zombies. unpublished.   (Google)
Abstract: According to the zombie conceivability argument, phenomenal zombies are conceivable, and hence possible, and hence physicalism is false. Critics of the conceivability argument have responded by denying either that zombies are conceivable or that they are possible. Much of the controversy hinges on how to establish and understand what is conceivable, what is possible, and the link between the two—matters that are at least as obscure and controversial as whether consciousness is physical. Because of this, the debate over physicalism is unlikely to be resolved by thinking about zombies—or at least, zombies as discussed by philosophers to date.



In this paper, I explore an alternative strategy against the zombie conceivability argument. I accept the possibility of zombies and ask whether that possibility is accessible (in the sense of ‘accessible’ used in possible world semantics) to our world. It turns out that the question of whether zombie worlds are accessible to our world is equivalent to the question of whether physicalism is true. By assuming that zombie worlds are accessible to our world, supporters of the zombie conceivability argument beg the question against physicalists. I will then consider what happens if a supporter of the zombie conceivability argument should insist that zombie worlds are accessible to our world. I will argue that the same ingredients used in the zombie conceivability argument—whatever they might be—can be used to construct an argument to the opposite conclusion. If that is correct, we reach a stalemate between physicalism and property dualism: while the possibility of some zombies entails property dualism, the possibility of other creatures entails physicalism. Since these two possibilities are inconsistent, one of them is not genuine. To resolve this stalemate, we need more than thought experiments.
Polcyn, Karol (2006). Conceivability, possibility, and a posteriori necessity: On Chalmers' argument for dualism. Diametros 7 (March):37-55.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Chalmers argues that zombies are possible and that therefore consciousness does not supervene on physical facts, which shows the falsity of materialism. The crucial step in this argument – that zombies are possible – follows from their conceivability and hence depends on assuming that conceivability implies possibility. But while Chalmers’s defense of this assumption – call it the conceivability principle – is the key part of his argument, it has not been well understood. As I see it, Chalmers’s defense of the conceivability principle comes in his response to the so-called objection from a posteriori necessity. The defense aims at showing that there is no gap between conceivability and possibility since no such gap can be generated by necessary a posteriori truths. I will argue that while Chalmers is right to the extent that there is no gap between conceivability and possibility within the standard Kripkean model of a posteriori necessity, his general conclusion is not justified. This is because the conceivability principle might be inconsistent with a posteriori necessity understood in some non-Kripkean way and Chalmers has not shown that no such alternative understanding of a posteriori necessity is available.
Polcyn, Karol (ms). Chalmers' two-dimensional argument against materialism.   (Google)
Polger, Thomas W. (online). Zombies. A Field Guide to the Philosophy of Mind.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Polger, Thomas W. (2000). Zombies explained. In Andrew Brook, Don Ross & David L. Thompson (eds.), Dennett's Philosophy: A Comprehensive Assessment. MIT Press.   (Cited by 8 | Google)
Prudovsky, Gad (1995). Arguments from conceivability. Ratio 8 (1):63-69.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: What can be inferred from the fact that something is, or is not, conceivable? In this paper I argue, contrary to some deflationary remarks in recent literature, that arguments which use such facts as their starting point may have significant philosophical import. I use Strawson's results from the first chapter of "Individuals" in order to show that Galileo's arguments in favor of the distinction between primary and secondary qualities, which are based on premises concerning conceivability, should not be dismissed: they are the first step towards recognizing an important conceptual truth
Raymore, Paul (ms). A materialist response to David Chalmers' The Conscious Mind.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Robinson, Howard M. (1976). The mind-body problem in contemporary philosophy. Zygon 11 (December):346-360.   (Cited by 3 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Robb, David (2008). Zombies from Below. In Simone Gozzano Francesco Orilia (ed.), Tropes, Universals, and the Philosophy of Mind: Essays at the Boundary of Ontology and Philosophical Psychology. Ontos Verlag.   (Google)
Abstract: A zombie is a creature just like a conscious being in certain respects, but wholly lacking in consciousness. In this paper, I look at zombies from the perspective of basic ontology (“from below”), taking as my starting point a trope ontology I have defended elsewhere. The consequences of this ontology for zombies are mixed. Viewed from below, one sort of zombie—the exact dispositional zombie—is impossible. A similar argument can be wielded against another sort—the exact physical zombie—but here supplementary principles are needed to get to the impossibility result. Finally, at least two sorts of zombie—the behavioural and functional zombies—escape these arguments from below.
Rosenthal, David M. (1968). Intentionality: A study of the views of Chisholm and Sellars. Philosophy.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Abstract: Edited in hypertext by Andrew Chrucky. Reprinted with the permission of Professor David Rosenthal. Editor's Note: Due to the limitation of current hypertext, the following conventions have been used. In general, if an expression has some mark over it, that mark is placed as a prefix to the expression. All Greek characters (except phi) are rendered by their names. Subscripts are placed in parentheses as concatenated suffixes: thus, e.g., H(2)O is the chemical formula for water. Sellars' dot quotes are expressed by bold periods
Rosenthal, David M. & Sellars, Wilfrid S. (1972). The Rosenthal-Sellars correspondence on intentionality. In Ausonio Marras (ed.), Intentionality, Mind and Language. University of Illinois Press.   (Google)
Abstract: In response to your kind offer to read through portions of the typescript of my thesis pertaining to your views on intentionality, I am sending you a copy of an introductory section to such a chapter.{1} The enclosed typescript represents a first draft, for which I apologize, but I thought it might be useful to get any comments you might have in at the ground floor, so to speak
Seager, William E. (ms). Are zombies logically possible? -- And why it matters.   (Google)
Abstract: A philosophical zombie is a being physically indistinguishable from an actual or possible human being, inhabiting a possible world where the _physical_ laws are identical to the laws of the actual world, but which completely lacks consciousness. For zombies, all is dark within, and hence they are, at the most fundamental level, utterly different from us. But, given their definition, this singular fact has no direct implications about the kind of motion, or other physical processes, the zombie will undergo within its own world. Under quite standard physicalist assumptions, such as certain assumptions about the 'initial conditions' of the zombie's world and that of the causal closure of the physical
Shoemaker, Sydney (1999). On David Chalmers's The Conscious Mind. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (2):439-444.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Shrader, Warren (online). Assessing the case against a posteriori physicalism.   (Google)
Skokowski, Paul G. (2002). I, zombie. Consciousness and Cognition 11 (1):1-9.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Certain recent philosophical theories offer the prospect that zombies are possible. These theories argue that experiential contents, or qualia, are nonphysical properties. The arguments are based on the conceivability of alternate worlds in which physical laws and properties remain the same, but in which qualia either differ or are absent altogether. This article maintains that qualia are, on the contrary, physical properties in the world. It is shown how, under the burden of the a posteriori identification of qualia with physical properties, a reasoned choice can be made between the two types of theories which ultimately favors materialism and rejects zombies
Sleutels, Jan (2006). Greek zombies. Philosophical Psychology 19 (2):177-197.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper explores the possibility that the human mind underwent substantial changes in recent history. Assuming that consciousness is a substantial trait of the mind, the paper focuses on the suggestion made by Julian Jaynes that the Mycenean Greeks had a "bicameral" mind instead of a conscious one. The suggestion is commonly dismissed as patently absurd, for instance by critics such as Ned Block. A closer examination of the intuitions involved, considered from different theoretical angles (social constructivism, idealism, eliminativism, realism), reveals that the idea of 'Greek zombies' should be taken more seriously than is commonly assumed
Sommers, Tamler (2002). Of zombies, color scientists, and floating iron bars. Psyche 8.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Abstract: a logically possible world physically identical to ours, in which the positive facts about consciousness do not hold." First, I analyze the move from conceivability to logical possibility. Following George Seddon, I consider the case of a floating iron bar and argue that even this seemingly conceivable event has implicit logical contradictions in its description. I then show that the distinctions Chalmers employs between primary and secondary intensions, and a priori and a posteriori entailment, break down upon close examination-with iron bars and with consciousness it is impossible to know where primary intensions end and secondary intensions begin. I extend this analysis of logical possibility to the famous zombie thought experiment and conclude not that a zombie world is logically _im_possible, but rather that, at present, the question is open. Finally, I show how a similar line of argument may be used to undermine the "Mary the color scientist" thought experiment as well
Squires, Roger (1974). Zombies vs materialists II. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 48:153-63.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Stalnaker, Robert (2007). Stalnaker on zombies (response to lycan). Philosophical Studies 133 (3):481-491.   (Google)
Stalnaker, Robert (2002). What is it like to be a zombie? In Tamar S. Gendler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Conceivability and Possibility. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 12 | Google)
Stoljar, Daniel (2006). Actors and zombies. In Alex Byrne & J. Thomson (eds.), Content and Modalities: Themes From the Philosophy of Robert Stalnaker. Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Abstract: 1. Much of contemporary philosophy of mind is dominated by the intersection of three topics: physicalism, the conceivability argument, and the necessary a posteriori. I will be concerned here (i) to describe (what I take to be) the consensus view of these topics; (ii) to explain why I think this account is mistaken; and (iii) to briefly sketch an alternative
Stoljar, Daniel (forthcoming). Review of Perry's Knowledge, Possibility, and Consciousness. Philosophical Quarterly.   (Google)
Abstract: _the subject matter assumption_ . Perry suggests that the subject matter assumption is false
Stoljar, Daniel (2001). The conceivability argument and two conceptions of the physical. Philosophical Perspectives 15:393-413.   (Cited by 9 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The conceivability argument (CA) against physicalism1 starts from the prem- ises that: (1) It is conceivable that I have a zombie-twin, i.e., that there is someone who is physically identical to me and yet who lacks phenomenal con- sciousness; and (2) If it is conceivable that I have a zombie-twin, then it is possible that I have a zombie-twin. These premises entail that physicalism is false, for physicalism is the claim—or can be assumed for our purposes to be the claim2—that
Stoljar, Daniel (2007). Two conceivability arguments compared. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 107.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: The conclusion of this argument (hereafter ZA) entails the falsity of physicalism because, technical details aside, physicalism is or entails the thesis that every psychological truth is entailed by some physical truth. If it is possible that I have a zombie duplicate however, then it is possible that the physical truths are as they are and some psychological truth is different. Hence 3 entails that physicalism is false. The second conceivability argument is one that is almost as famous, though perhaps it is less famous for being a conceivability argument: the perfect actor argument against behaviorism (see, e.g., Putnam 1963, 1975). In a version that is both familiar and relatively clear, it goes like this
Tanney, Julia (2004). On the conceptual, psychological, and moral status of zombies, swamp-beings, and other 'behaviourally indistinguishable' creatures. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 69 (1):173-186.   (Google | More links)
Thomas, Nigel J. T. (1998). Zombie killer. In Stuart R. Hameroff, Alfred W. Kaszniak & A. C. Scott (eds.), Toward a Science of Consciousness II. MIT Press.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Philosopher's zombies are hypothetical beings behaviorally, functionally, and perhaps even physically indistinguishable from normal humans, but who lack our consciousness. Many people seem to be convinced that such zombies are a real conceptual possibility, and that this bare possibility entails that understanding human consciousness must remain forever beyond the reach of science. However, the conceptual entailments of zombiehood have not been sufficiently examined. This brief article shows that any way of understanding the behavior of zombies that does in fact support the suggested entailment, leads to contradictions and absurdities. Zombies are _not_ conceptually possible
Unwin, Nicholas (ms). Expressivism and the Metaphysics of Consciousness.   (Google)
Abstract: An expressivist theory of consciousness is outlined. The suggestion that attributions of consciousness involve an essentially projective element is carefully examined, as is the view that ‘zombism’, defined as the thought that certain people are unconscious although physically normal, is a largely affective and not wholly cognitive (hypothetical) disorder. A comparison is drawn between ‘zombism’ and the Capgras delusion. The notion of supervenience is shown to be deeply problematic when applied to projected properties, as is the distinction between weak and strong varieties. It is concluded that, contrary to most received opinion, consciousness and values are not all that different as far as these modal considerations are concerned.
Vahid, Hamid (2006). Conceivability and possibility: Chalmers on modal epistemology. Philosophical Explorations 9 (3):243-260.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: We often decide whether a state of affairs is possible (impossible) by trying to mentally depict a scenario (using words, images, etc.) where the state in question obtains (or fails to obtain). These mental acts (broadly thought of as 'conceiving') seem to provide us with an epistemic route to the space of possibilities. The problem this raises is whether conceivability judgments provide justification-conferring grounds for the ensuing possibility-claims (call this the 'conceivability thesis'). Although the question has a long history, contemporary interest in it was, to a large extent, prompted by Kripke's utilization of modal intuitions in the course of propounding certain influential theses in the philosophy of language and mind. The interest has been given a further boost by the recent two-dimensional approach to the Kripkean framework. In this paper, I begin by providing a detailed examination of a most recent attempt (due to Chalmers) to defend the thesis and argue that it is unsuccessful. This is followed by presenting my own gloss on Kripke's explanation of the illusions of contingency and I close by raising a general problem intended to undermine the prospects for a successful defense of the thesis.
van Gulick, Robert (1999). Conceiving beyond our means: The limits of thought experiments. In Stuart R. Hameroff, Alfred W. Kaszniak & David J. Chalmers (eds.), Toward a Science of Consciousness III. MIT Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Vierkant, Tillmann (2002). Zombie Mary and the blue banana. On the compatibility of the 'knowledge argument' with the argument from modality. Psyche 8 (19).   (Google)
Walde, Bettina (2005). On epistemic and ontological aspects of consciousness: Modal arguments and their possible implications. Mind and Matter 3 (2):103-115.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Anti-materialist thought experiments as, e.g., zombie arguments, have posed some of the most vexing problems for materialist accounts of phenomenal consciousness. I doubt, however, that arguments of this kind can refute the core thesis of materialism. Although I do not question that there is something very special about an adequate explanation of phenomenal consciousness, and although I accept the epistemic irreducibility of phenomenal consciousness, I deny that modal arguments reach far enough to establish essentialism about consciousness. I will draw upon a relativistic conception of modal space and suggest to strictly separate between varieties of metaphysical possibility - depending on which world is considered as actual, and depending on accessibility relations. It is shown that the modal argument cannot endanger the reductive explanation of the mind-brain relation if one distinguishes carefully between possibility according to primary intensions (epistemic possibility) and possibility according to secondary intensions (meta-physical possibility). Modal arguments are strong enough to make an epistemological point but not an ontological one
Weatherson, Brian (ms). Morality in fiction and consciousness in imagination.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Webster, W. R. (2006). Human zombies are metaphysically impossible. Synthese 151 (2):297-310.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Chalmers (The Conscious Mind, Oxford Unversity Press, Oxford 1996) has argued for a form of property dualism on the basis of the concept of a zombie (which is physically identical to normals), and the concept of the inverted spectrum. He asserts that these concepts show that the facts about consciousness, such as experience or qualia, are really further facts about our world, over and above the physical facts. He claims that they are the hard part of the mind-body issue. He also claims that consciousness is a fundamental feature of the world like mass, charge, etc. He says that consciousness does not logically supervene on the physical and all current attempts to assert an identity between consciousness and the physical are just as non-reductive as his dualism. They are simply correlations and are part of the problem of the explanatory gap. In this paper, three examples of strong identities between a sensation or a quale and a physiological process are presented, which overcome these problems. They explain the identity in an a priori manner and they show that consciousness or sensations (Q) logically supervene on the physical (P), in that it is logically impossible to have P and not to have Q. In each case, the sensation was predicted and entailed by the physical. The inverted spectrum problem for consciousness is overcome and explained by a striking asymmetry in colour space. It is concluded that as some physical properties realize some sensations or qualia that human zombies are not metaphysically possible and the explanatory gap is bridged in these cases. Thus, the hard problem is overcome in these instances
Worley, Sara (2003). Conceivability, possibility and physicalism. Analysis 63 (1):15-23.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Yablo, Stephen (1999). Concepts and consciousness. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (2):455-463.   (Cited by 30 | Google | More links)
Yablo, Stephen (2002). Coulda, woulda, shoulda. In Tamar S. Gendler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Conceivability and Possibility. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 24 | Google | More links)
Yablo, Stephen (ms). No Fool's Cold: Notes on Illusions of Possibility.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Yablo, Stephen (online). Modal rationalism and logical empiricism: Some similarities.   (Google)
Yablo, Stephen (1998). Textbook kripkeanism and the open texture of language. Philosophical Quarterly 48 (1):98-122.   (Cited by 2 | Google)

1.3c Kripke's Modal Argument

Barnette, R. L. (1977). Kripke's pains. Southern Journal of Philosophy 15:3-14.   (Annotation | Google)
Bayne, Steven R. (1988). Kripke's cartesian argument. Philosophia 18 (July):265-270.   (Annotation | Google | More links)
Bealer, George (1994). Mental properties. Journal of Philosophy 91 (4):185-208.   (Cited by 21 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Abstract: It is argued that, because of scientific essentialism, two currently popular arguments against the mind-body identity thesis -- the multiple-realizability argument and the Nagel-Jackson knowledge argument -- are unsatisfactory as they stand and that their problems are incurable. It is then argued that a refutation of the identity thesis in its full generality can be achieved by weaving together two traditional Cartesian arguments -- the modal argument and the certainty argument. This argument establishes, not just the falsity of the identity thesis, but also the metaphysical possibility of disembodiment
Bealer, George (2004). The origins of modal error. Dialectica 58 (1):11-42.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Modal intuitions are the primary source of modal knowledge but also of modal error. According to the theory of modal error in this paper, modal intuitions retain their evidential force in spite of their fallibility, and erroneous modal intuitions are in principle identifiable and eliminable by subjecting our intuitions to a priori dialectic. After an inventory of standard sources of modal error, two further sources are examined in detail. The first source - namely, the failure to distinguish between metaphysical possibility and various kinds of epistemic possibility - turns out to be comparatively easy to untangle and poses little threat to intuition-driven philosophical investigation. The second source is the local (i.e., temporary) misunderstanding of one's concepts (as opposed to outright Burgean misunderstanding). This pathology may be understood on analogy with a patient who is given a clean bill of health at his annual check-up, despite his having a cold at the time of the check-up: although the patient's health is locally (temporarily) disrupted, his overall health is sufficiently good to enable him to overcome the cold without external intervention. Even when our understanding of certain pivotal concepts has lapsed locally, our larger body of intuitions is sufficiently reliable to allow us, without intervention, to ferret out the modal errors resulting from this lapse of understanding by means of dialectic and/or a process of a priori reflection. This source of modal error, and our capacity to overcome it, has wide-ranging implications for philosophical method - including, in particular, its promise for disarming skepticism about the classical method of intuition-driven investigation itself. Indeed, it is shown that skeptical accounts of modal error (e.g., the accounts given by Hill, Levin, and several others) are ultimately self-defeating
Blum, Alex (1989). Bayne on Kripke. Philosophia 19 (4):455-456.   (Google | More links)
Blumenfeld, J-B. (1975). Kripke's refutation of materialism. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 53 (April):151-6.   (Annotation | Google | More links)
Boyd, Robert (1980). Materialism without reductionism: What physicalism does not entail. In Ned Block (ed.), Readings in the Philosophy of Psychology. , Vol 1.   (Cited by 43 | Annotation | Google)
Byrne, Alex (2007). Possibility and imagination. Philosophical Perspectives 21 (1):125–144.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: forthcoming in Philosophical Perspectives
Carney, James D. (1975). Kripke and materialism. Philosophical Studies 27 (April):279-282.   (Cited by 2 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Carney, James D. & von Bretzel, P. (1973). Modern materialism and essentialism. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 51 (May):78-81.   (Annotation | Google | More links)
Double, Richard (1981). On a Wittgensteinian objection to Kripke's dualism argument. Philosophy Research Archives 1414.   (Google)
Double, Richard (1976). The inconclusiveness of Kripke's argument against the identity theory. Auslegung 3 (June):156-65.   (Google)
Feldman, Fred (1980). Identity, necessity, and events. In Ned Block (ed.), Readings in the Philosophy of Psychology. , Vol.   (Cited by 4 | Annotation | Google)
Feldman, Fred (1973). Kripke's argument against materialism. Philosophical Studies 24 (November):416-19.   (Cited by 3 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Feldman, Fred (1974). Kripke on the identity theory. Journal of Philosophy 71 (October):665-76.   (Cited by 6 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Gjelsvik, Olav (1988). A Kripkean objection to Kripke's arguments against the identity-theories. Inquiry 30 (December):435-50.   (Cited by 1 | Annotation | Google)
Hanks, Peter, Conceiving of pain.   (Google)
Abstract: Kripke’s modal argument against the mind-body identity thesis is by now familiar (Kripke 1980): 1. It is possible for there to be pain without C-fiber stimulation, and vice versa.1 2. If pain = C-fiber stimulation, then it is not possible for there to be pain without..
Hill, Christopher S. (1981). Why cartesian intuitions are compatible with the identity thesis. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 42 (December):254-65.   (Annotation | Google | More links)
Holman, Emmett L. (1988). Qualia, Kripkean arguments, and subjectivity. Philosophy Research Archives 13:411-29.   (Annotation | Google)
Jackson, Frank (1980). A note on physicalism and heat. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 58 (March):26-34.   (Cited by 5 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Jacquette, Dale (1987). Kripke and the mind-body problem. Dialectica 41:293-300.   (Cited by 1 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Kripke, Saul A. (1971). Identity and necessity. In Milton K. Munitz (ed.), Identity and Individuation. New York University Press.   (Cited by 136 | Annotation | Google)
Kripke, Saul A. (1980). Naming and Necessity. Harvard University Press.   (Cited by 2621 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Leplin, Jarrett (1979). Theoretical identification and the mind-body problem. Philosophia 8 (October):673-88.   (Annotation | Google | More links)
Levin, Michael E. (1975). Kripke's argument against the identity thesis. Journal of Philosophy 72 (March):149-67.   (Cited by 7 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Levin, Michael E. (1995). Tortuous dualism. Journal of Philosophy 92 (6):313-22.   (Cited by 4 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Ludwig, Pascal (ms). Kripke's conceivability argument reconsidered.   (Google)
Lycan, William G. (1987). Functionalism and essence. In William G. Lycan (ed.), Consciousness. MIT Press.   (Annotation | Google)
Lycan, William G. (1974). Kripke and the materialists. Journal of Philosophy 71 (October):677-89.   (Cited by 4 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Malcolm, Norman (1980). Kripke on heat and sensations of heat. Philosophical Investigations 3:12-20.   (Google)
Maxwell, Grover (1979). Rigid designators and mind-brain identity. Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science 9.   (Cited by 20 | Annotation | Google)
McGinn, Colin (1977). Anomalous monism and Kripke's cartesian intuitions. Analysis 2 (January):78-80.   (Cited by 11 | Annotation | Google)
McGinn, Colin (1978). Reply to Woodfield's identity theories and the argument from epistemic counterparts. Analysis 38 (June):144-146.   (Google)
McMullen, C. (1984). An argument against the identity theory. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 65:277-87.   (Annotation | Google)
Merrell, Don A. (2006). Theoretical identity, reference fixing, and Boyd's defense of type materialism. Philosophia 34 (2).   (Google | More links)
Merrell, Don A. (2005). Token physicalism is not immune to Kripke's essentialist anti-physicalist argument. Philosophia 32 (1-4):383-388.   (Google | More links)
Mucciolo, Laurence F. (1975). On Kripke's argument against the identity thesis. Philosophia 5 (October):499-506.   (Annotation | Google | More links)
Nogaret, T.; Robertson, C. & Rodney, D. (2007). Atomic-scale plasticity in the presence of Frank loops. Philosophical Magazine 87 (6):945-966.   (Google)
Papineau, David (2007). Kripke's proof is ad hominem not two-dimensional. Philosophical Perspectives 21 (1):475–494.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Identity theorists make claims like ‘pain = C-fibre stimulation’. These claims must be necessary if true, given that terms like ‘pain’ and ‘C-fibre stimulation’ are rigid. Yet there is no doubt that such claims appear contingent. It certainly seems that there could have been C-fibre stimulation without pains or vice versa. So identity theorists owe us an explanation of why such claims should appear contingent if they are in fact necessary
Papineau, David (online). Kripke's proof that we are all intuitive dualists.   (Google)
Perry, John (2001). The modal argument. In Knowledge, Possibility, and Consciousness. MIT Press.   (Google)
Polger, Thomas W. (online). Kripke and the illusion of contingent identity.   (Google | More links)
Rocca Della, M. (1993). Kripke's essentialist arguments against the identity theory. Philosophical Studies 69 (1):101-112.   (Annotation | Google)
Sher, George A. (1977). Kripke, cartesian intuitions, and materialism. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 7:227-38.   (Annotation | Google)
Taylor, Paul (1983). McGinn, token physicalism, and a rejoinder of Woodfield. Analysis 43 (March):80-83.   (Google)
Woodfield, Andrew (1978). Identity theories and the argument from epistemic counterparts. Analysis 38 (June):140-3.   (Annotation | Google)
Woodfield, Andrew (1978). Rejoinder to McGinn. Analysis 38 (October):201-203.   (Google)
Wright, C. (2002). The conceivability of naturalism. In Tamar S. Gendler (ed.), Conceivability and Possibility. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 4 | Google)

1.3d Arguments from Disembodiment

Almog, J. (2005). 'What am I?' Descartes and the mind-body problem - reply. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 70 (3):717-734.   (Google)
Alston, William P. & Smythe, Thomas W. (1994). Swinburne's argument for dualism. Faith and Philosophy 11 (1):127-33.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Blose, B. L. (1981). Materialism and disembodied minds. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 42 (September):59-74.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Burwood, Stephen (2008). The apparent truth of dualism and the uncanny body. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 7 (2).   (Google)
Abstract: It has been suggested that our experiences of embodiment in general appear to constitute an experiential ground for dualist philosophy and that this is particularly so with experiences of dissociation, in which one feels estranged from one’s body. Thus, Drew Leder argues that these play “a crucial role in encouraging and supporting Cartesian dualism” as they “seem to support the doctrine of an immaterial mind trapped inside an alien body”. In this paper I argue that as dualism does not capture the character of such experiences there is not even an apparent separation of self and body revealed here and that one’s body is experienced as uncanny rather than alien. The general relationship between our philosophical theorizing and the phenomenology of lived experience is also considered
Carrier, L. (1974). Definitions and disembodied minds. Personalist Forum 55:334-43.   (Google)
Cole, David J. & Foelber, F. (1984). Contingent materialism. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 65:74-85.   (Cited by 9 | Annotation | Google)
Corcoran, Kevin J. (1998). Persons and bodies. Faith and Philosophy 15 (3):324-340.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Englebretsen, George F. (1972). Armstrong on disembodied minds. Dialogue 11 (December):576-579.   (Google)
Englebretsen, George F. (1974). More on disembodied minds. Philosophical Papers 3 (May):48-50.   (Google)
Estes, David (2006). Evidence for early dualism and a more direct path to afterlife beliefs. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 29 (5):470-+.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Ample evidence for dualism in early childhood already exists. Young children have explicit knowledge of the distinction between mental and physical phenomena, which provides the foundation for a rapidly developing theory of mind. Belief in psychological immortality might then follow naturally from this mentalistic conception of human existence and thus require no organized cognitive system dedicated to producing it
Everitt, Nicholas (2000). Substance dualism and disembodied existence. Faith and Philosophy 17 (3):333-347.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Gillett, Grant R. (1986). Disembodied persons. Philosophy 61 (July):377-386.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Goetz, Stewart C. (2001). Modal dualism: A critique. In Kevin J. Corcoran (ed.), Soul, Body, and Survival: Essays on the Metaphysics of Human Persons. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Goff, Philip (2010). Ghosts and sparse properties: Why physicalists have more to fear from ghosts than zombies. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81 (1):119-139.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Zombies are bodies without minds: creatures that are physically identical to actual human beings, but which have no conscious experience. Much of the consciousness literature focuses on considering how threatening philosophical reflection on such creatures is to physicalism. There is not much attention given to the converse possibility, the possibility of minds without bodies, that is, creatures who are conscious but whose nature is exhausted by their being conscious. We can call such a ‘purely conscious’ creature a ghost
Hart, William D. (1988). The Engines of the Soul. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 26 | Google)
Hocutt, Max O. (1974). Armstrong and Strawson on 'disembodied existence'. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 35 (September):46-59.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Jaeger, Robert A. (1978). Brain/body dualism. Philosophical Studies 34 (November):427-435.   (Google | More links)
Jones, J. (2004). Cartesian conceivings. Metaphysica 5 (1):135-50.   (Google)
Lewy, C. (1943). Is the notion of disembodied existence self-contradictory? Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 43:59-78.   (Google)
Long, Douglas C. (1969). Descartes' argument for mind-body dualism. Philosophical Forum 1:259-273.   (Google)
Abstract: [p. 259] After establishing his own existence by the Cogito argument, Descartes inquires into the nature of the self that he claims to know with certainty to exist. He concludes that he is a res cogitans, an unextended entity whose essence is to be conscious. Although a considerable amount of critical effort has been expended in attempts to show how he thought he could move to this important conclusion, his reasoning has remained quite unconvincing. In particular, his critics have insisted, and I think quite rightly, that his claim to be "entirely and absolutely distinct"[i] from his body is not justified by the reasoning which he offers in its support.[ii] Nevertheless, I also believe that the proffered criticisms of Descartes
Long, Douglas C. (1977). Disembodied existence, physicalism, and the mind-body problem. Philosophical Studies 31 (May):307-316.   (Google | More links)
Merricks, Trenton (1994). A new objection to A Priori arguments for dualism. American Philosophical Quarterly 31 (1):81-85.   (Cited by 1 | Annotation | Google)
Odegard, Douglas (1970). Disembodied existence and central state materialism. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 48 (August):256-60.   (Google | More links)
Pecnjak, D. (1995). Remarks on disembodied existence. Acta Analytica 10 (13):209-13.   (Google)
Plantinga, Alvin (2006). Against materialism. Faith and Philosophy 23 (1):3-32.   (Google)
Shoemaker, Sydney (1983). On an argument for dualism. In Carl A. Ginet & Sydney Shoemaker (eds.), Knowledge and Mind: Philosophical Essays. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 5 | Google)
Smart, Brian J. (1971). Can disembodied persons be spatially located? Analysis 31 (March):133-138.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Smythe, Thomas W. (1989). Disembodied minds and personal identity. Philosophy Research Archives 14:415-423.   (Google)
Spieler, David A. (1974). Central state materialism, dualism, and disembodied existence. Personalist 55:354-355.   (Google)
Strawson, Galen (2006). Panpsychism? Reply to commentators with a celebration of Descartes. Journal of Consciousness Studies 13 (10-11):184-280.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Stump, Eleonore & Kretzmann, Norman (1996). An objection to Swinburne's argument for dualism. Faith and Philosophy 13 (3):405-412.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Swinburne, Richard (1997). The modal argument for substance dualism. In The Evolution of the Soul. (Revised Edition).   (Google)
Taliaferro, Charles (1986). A modal argument for dualism. Southern Journal of Philosophy 24:95-108.   (Google)
Taliaferro, Charles (1997). Possibilities in the philosophy of mind. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 57 (1):127-37.   (Google | More links)
Tidman, Paul (1994). Conceivability as a test for possibility. American Philosophical Quarterly 31 (4):297-309.   (Cited by 13 | Google)
Tye, Michael (1983). On the possibility of disembodied existence. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 61 (September):275-282.   (Cited by 2 | Annotation | Google | More links)
van Cleve, James (1983). Conceivability and the cartesian argument for dualism. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 64 (January):35-45.   (Cited by 13 | Google)
Yablo, Stephen (1993). Is conceivability a guide to possibility? Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 53 (1):1-42.   (Cited by 66 | Google | More links)
Zimmerman, D. (1991). Two cartesian arguments for the simplicity of the soul. American Philosophical Quarterly 28 (July):127-37.   (Cited by 3 | Google)

1.3e Other Anti-Materialist Arguments

Bealer, George (1994). The rejection of the identity thesis. In The Mind-Body Problem: A Guide to the Current Debate. Cambridge: Blackwell.   (Cited by 4 | Google)
Block, Ned (2006). Max Black's objection to mind-body identity. Oxford Review of Metaphysics 3.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract: considered an objection (Objection 3) that he says he thought was first put to him by Max Black. He says
Botterell, Andrew (2003). The property dualism argument against physicalism. Journal of Philosophical Research 28:223-242.   (Google)
Clapp, Leonard J. (1997). Senses, sensations and brain processes: A criticism of the property dualism argument. Southwest Philosophy Review 14 (1):139-148.   (Google)
Double, Richard (1983). Nagel's argument that mental properties are nonphysical. Philosophy Research Archives 9:217-22.   (Google)
Göcke, Benedikt Paul (2008). Physicalism quaerens intellectum. Philosophical Forum 39 (4):463-468.   (Google)
Gertler, Brie (2006). Consciousness and Qualia Cannot Be Reduced. In Robert J. Stainton (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Cognitive Science (Contemporary Debates in Philosophy). Blackwell.   (Google)
Goldstein, Irwin (1994). Identifying mental states: A celebrated hypothesis refuted. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 72 (1):46-62.   (Cited by 2 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Abstract: Functionalists think an event's causes and effects, its 'causal role', determines whether it is a mental state and, if so, which kind. Functionalists see this causal role principle as supporting their orthodox materialism, their commitment to the neuroscientist's ontology. I examine and refute the functionalist's causal principle and the orthodox materialism that attends that principle.
Goldstein, Laurence (1980). The reasons of a materialist. Philosophy 55 (April):249-252.   (Google)
Hasker, William (2003). How not to be a reductivist. Progress in Complexity, Information, and Design 2.   (Google | More links)
Kelly, J. S. (1989). On neutralizing introspection: The data of sensuous awareness. Southern Journal of Philosophy 27:29-53.   (Google)
Lahav, Ran (1994). A new challenge for the physicalist: Phenomenal indistinguishabilty. Philosophia 24 (1-2):77-103.   (Cited by 1 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Levine, Joe (2007). Anti-materialist arguments and influential replies. In Max Velmans & Susan Schneider (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness. Blackwell.   (Google)
Lycan, William G. (2006). Consciousness and Qualia Can Be Reduced. In Robert J. Stainton (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Cognitive Science (Contemporary Debates in Philosophy). Blackwell.   (Google)
Madell, Geoffrey C. (1988). Mind and Materialism. Edinburgh University Press.   (Cited by 10 | Annotation | Google)
Madell, Geoffrey C. (2003). Materialism and the first person. In Anthony O'Hear (ed.), Minds and Persons. Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Maxwell, Nicholas (1968). Understanding sensations. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 46 (August):127-146.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
McGinn, Colin (2001). What is it not like to be a brain? In P. Van Loocke (ed.), The Physical Nature of Consciousness. John Benjamins.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
McKinsey, Michael (2005). A refutation of qualia physicalism. In Michael O'Rourke & Corey G. Washington (eds.), Situating Semantics: Essays on the Philosophy of John Perry. MIT Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Mijuskovic, Ben L. (1976). The simplicity argument versus a materialist theory of consciousness. Philosophy Today 20:292-305.   (Google)
Nida-Rumelin, Martine (2004). Phenomenal essentialism: A problem for identity theorists. In Ralph Schumacher (ed.), Perception and Reality: From Descartes to the Present. Mentis.   (Google)
Pautz, Adam (2010). A Simple View of Consciousness. In Bealer and Koons (ed.), The Waning of Materialism. Oxford.   (Google)
Abstract: Phenomenal intentionality is irreducible. Empirical investigation shows it is internally-dependent. So our usual externalist (causal, etc.) theories do not apply here. Internalist views of phenomenal intentionality (e. g. interpretationism) also fail. The resulting primitivist view avoids Papineau's worry that terms for consciousness are highly indeterminate: since conscious properties are extremely natural (despite having unnatural supervenience bases) they are 'reference magnets'.
Pautz, Adam (forthcoming). Do Theories of Consciousness Rest on a Mistake? Philosophical Issues 20.   (Google)
Abstract: Using empirical research on pain, sound and taste, I argue against the combination of intentionalism about consciousness and a broadly ‘tracking’ psychosemantics of the kind defended by Fodor, Dretske, Hill, Neander, Stalnaker, Tye and others. Then I develop problems with Kriegel and Prinz's attempt to combine a Dretskean psychosemantics with the view that sensible properties are Shoemakerian response-dependent properties. Finally, I develop in detail my own 'primitivist' view of sensory intentionality.
Pautz, Adam (online). Is physicalism simpler than dualism?   (Google)
Abstract: The problems with Physicalism that have most exercised its defenders are
Pautz, Adam (ms). The relational structure of sensory consciousness and the mind-body problem.   (Google)
Abstract: I am going to develop an argument against Physicalism concerning qualitative mental properties. Unlike most arguments against Physicalism, it is not based on the usual a priori considerations, such as what Mary learns when she comes out of her black and white room or the apparent conceivability of Zombies. Rather, it is based on two broadly a posteriori premises about the structure of experience and its physical basis
Perry, John (2006). Mary and Max and jack and Ned. In Dean W. Zimmerman (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaphysics, Volume 2. Oxford: Clarendon Press.   (Google)
Perry, John (2004). Pr. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (1):172-181.   (Google | More links)
Perry, John (2004). Replies. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (1):207-229.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Robinson, Howard M. (1982). Matter and Sense: A Critique of Contemporary Materialism. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 25 | Google)
Robinson, Howard M. (ed.) (1993). Objections to Physicalism. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 15 | Annotation | Google)
Abstract: Physicalism has, over the past twenty years, become almost an orthodoxy, especially in the philosophy of mind. Many philosophers, however, feel uneasy about this development, and this volume is intended as a collective response to it. Together these papers, written by philosophers from Britain, the United States, and Australasia, show that physicalism faces enormous problems in every area in which it is discussed. The contributors not only investigate the well-known difficulties that physicalism has in accommodating sensory consciousness, but also bring out its inadequacies in dealing with thought, intentionality, abstract objects, (such as numbers), and principles of both theoretical and practical reason; even its ability to cope with the physical world itself is called into question. Both strong "reductionist" versions and weaker "supervenience" theories are discussed and found to face different but equally formidable obstacles. Contributors include George Bealer, Peter Forrest, John Foster, Grant Gillett, Bob Hale, Michael Lockwood, George Myro, Nicholas Nathan, David Smith, Steven Wagner, Ralph Walker, and Richard Warner
Rosenberg, Gregg H. (2004). The argument against physicalism. In Gregg H. Rosenberg (ed.), A Place for Consciousness. Oup.   (Google)
Sellars, Roy Wood (1922). Is consciousness physical? Journal of Philosophy 19 (25):690-694.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Sellars, Wilfrid S. (1981). Is consciousness physical? The Monist 64 (January):66-90.   (Cited by 4 | Annotation | Google)
Smith, A. D. (1993). Non-reductive physicalism? In Howard M. Robinson (ed.), Objections to Physicalism. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 5 | Annotation | Google)
Stoljar, Daniel (2000). Physicalism and the necessary A Posteriori. Journal of Philosophy 97 (1):33-55.   (Cited by 17 | Google | More links)
Stoljar, Daniel (forthcoming). The argument from revelation. In Robert Nola & David Braddon Mitchell (eds.), Conceptual Analysis and Philosophical Naturalism. MIT Press.   (Google)
Abstract: 1. Introduction The story of Canberra, the capital of Australia, is roughly as follows. In 1901, when what is called
Sturgeon, Scott (1999). Conceptual gaps and odd possibilities. Mind 108 (430):377-380.   (Google | More links)
Velmans, Max (1998). Goodbye to reductionism: Complementary first and third-person approaches to consciousness. In Stuart R. Hameroff, Alfred W. Kaszniak & A. C. Scott (eds.), Toward a Science of Consciousness II. MIT Press.   (Cited by 15 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This chapter argues that dualist vs. reductionist debates adopt an implicit description of consciousness that does not resemble ordinary experience. If one adopts an accurate description of conscious phenomenology along with an understanding of the fundamental differences between correlation, causation and ontological identity, reductionism cannot succeed. However the alternative is not a dualism that places consciousness beyond science. Rather, it is a nonreductionist science of consciousness.
Walker, Ralph (1996). Transcendental arguments against physicalism. In Howard M. Robinson (ed.), Objections to Physicalism. New York: Clarendon Press.   (Google)
White, Stephen L. (2002). Why the property dualism argument won't go away. Journal of Philosophy.   (Cited by 5 | Google)

1.3f Consciousness and Materialism, Misc

Alter, Torin & Walter, Sven (eds.) (2007). Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract: What is the nature of consciousness? How is consciousness related to brain processes? This volume collects thirteen new papers on these topics: twelve by leading and respected philosophers and one by a leading color-vision scientist. All focus on consciousness in the "phenomenal" sense: on what it's like to have an experience. Consciousness has long been regarded as the biggest stumbling block for physicalism, the view that the mind is physical. The controversy has gained focus over the last few decades, and phenomenal knowledge and phenomenal concepts--knowledge of consciousness and the associated concepts--have come to play increasingly prominent roles in this debate. Consider Frank Jackson's famous case of Mary, the super-scientist who learns all the physical information while confined in a black-and-white room. According to Jackson, if physicalism is true, then Mary's physical knowledge should allow her to deduce what it's like to see in color. Yet it seems intuitively clear that she learns something when she leaves the room. But then how can consciousness be physical? Arguably, whether this sort of reasoning is sound depends on how phenomenal concepts and phenomenal knowledge are construed. For example, some argue that the Mary case reveals something about phenomenal concepts but has no implications for the nature of consciousness itself. Are responses along these lines adequate? Or does the problem arise again at the level of phenomenal concepts? The papers in this volume engage with the latest developments in this debate. The authors' perspectives range widely. For example, Daniel Dennett argues that anti-physicalist arguments such as the knowledge argument are simply confused; David Papineau grants that such arguments at least reveal important features of phenomenal concepts; and David Chalmers defends the anti-physicalist arguments, arguing that the "phenomenal concept strategy" cannot succeed
Baker, John R. (1946). A critique of materialism. Hibbert Journal 45:31-37.   (Google)
Balog, Katalin (2004). Review: Thinking about consciousness. Mind 113 (452).   (Google)
Abstract: Papineau in his book provides a detailed defense of physicalism via what has recently been dubbed the “phenomenal concept strategy”. I share his enthusiasm for this approach. But I disagree with his account of how a physicalist should respond to the conceivability arguments. Also I argue that his appeal to teleosemantics in explaining mental quotation is more like a promissory note than an actual theory.
Barnette, R. L. (1978). Grounding the mental. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 39 (September):92-105.   (Google | More links)
Bissett Pratt, James (1922). The new materialism. Journal of Philosophy 19 (13):337-351.   (Google | More links)
Fox, Michael (1978). Beyond materialism. Dialogue 17:367-70.   (Google)
Goldstein, Irwin (2004). Neural Materialism, Pain's Badness, and a Posteriori Identities. In Maite Ezcurdia, Robert Stainton & Christopher Viger (eds.), New Essays in the Philosophy of Language and Mind. University of Calgary Press.   (Google)
Abstract: Orthodox neural materialists think mental states are neural events or orthodox material properties of neutral events. Orthodox material properties are defining properties of the “physical”. A “defining property” of the physical is a type of property that provides a necessary condition for something’s being correctly termed “physical”. In this paper I give an argument against orthodox neural materialism. If successful, the argument would show at least some properties of some mental states are not orthodox material properties of neural events. I argue against the existence of a posteriori identities.
Hancock, Roger (1967). Materialism, privacy, and reference. Southern Journal of Philosophy 5:119-125.   (Google)
Hill, Christopher S. (1991). Sensations: A Defense of Type Materialism. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 70 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Abstract: This is a book about sensory states and their apparent characteristics. It confronts a whole series of metaphysical and epistemological questions and presents an argument for type materialism: the view that sensory states are identical with the neural states with which they are correlated. According to type materialism, sensations are only possessed by human beings and members of related biological species; silicon-based androids cannot have sensations. The author rebuts several other rival theories (dualism, double aspect theory, eliminative materialism, functionalism), and explores a number of important issues: the forms and limits of introspective awareness of sensations, the semantic properties of sensory concepts, knowledge of other minds, and unity of consciousness. The book is a significant contribution to the philosophy of mind, and has much to say to psychologists and cognitive scientists
Hopkins, James (online). Mind as metaphor: A physicalistic approach to the problem of consciousness.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Abstract: In what follows I present an approach to the problem of consciousness, which I take to be suggested by Wittgenstein's remarks on sensation. As sketched here, this consists of a number of empirical hypotheses about the mind and how we represent it, and a series of arguments that these hypotheses explain phenomena which constitute the problem of consciousness, in such a way as to render them neither mysterious nor problematic
Howell, Robert J. (online). The Hard Problem of Consciousness. Scholarpedia.   (Google)
Hubbard, John (ms). Parsimony and the mind.   (Google)
Hutto, Daniel D. & Stamenov, Maxim I. (eds.) (2000). Beyond Physicalism (Advances in Consciousness Research Series). Amsterdam: John Benjamins.   (Google)
Jacobs, Norman (1937). Physicalism and sensation sentences. Journal of Philosophy 34 (22):602-611.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Khatami, Mahmoud (2005). On the physicalistic approach to consciousness. Teorema 24 (1):35-51.   (Google)
Kirsh, Marvin E. (ms). Einstein and Mythology : The Lengthier the Relations in a Myth the Greater Its' Mass.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: The theory of relativity (1) is considered form a perspective of folklore. Abstracted entities in the theory of relativity are stripped of units in order to provide explanation, to expose an ordinary meaning that employs a fulcrum for visual description. It is suggested that components of the theory’s construction are not only unusually compatible with religious and spiritual but are also unaccounted for scientifically; they may not render the expected power struggle of church doctrine with scientific notions but an opposite situation in which logical contradiction at the root level of physical meaning and symbolism is absent and might exist only with respect to active perceptual structuring, either functioning on the unknown or belief. This situation, is projected to exist in a volatile mythological form as a ‘fulcrum’ like bridge between points of dispersion in which the (invisible) entity of mass assumes an added social (or physical) weight imposed by the assumption of the existence of massless space; especially, should its’ logically non excludable converse situation, of exclusively “mass and force containing space” for all phenomenon, find future explanation and validity.
Livaditis, Miltos & Tsatalmpasidou, Evgenia (2007). A critical review of the physicalistic approaches of the mind and consciousness. Cognitive Processing 8 (1):1-9.   (Google | More links)
Lloyd, Peter (1993). Is the mind physical? Dissecting conscious brain tissue. Philosophy Now 6.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Locke, Don (1971). Must a materialist pretend he's anaesthetized? Philosophical Quarterly 21 (July):217-31.   (Cited by 2 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Lund, D. H. (2000). Materialism and the subject of consciousness. Idealistic Studies 30 (1):7-23.   (Google)
Maxwell, Nicholas (2007). From Knowledge to Wisdom (Second Edition). Pentire Press.   (Google | More links)
McCauley, Robert N. (ed.) (1996). The Churchlands and Their Critics. Blackwell Publishers.   (Google)
McGlone, Michael (ms). Strong Impossibilities (Partial Draft 1).   (Google)
Abstract: A strong impossibility is a situation that is epistemically, but not metaphysically, possible. Opponents of strong impossibilities (including Chalmers, Jackson and Stalnaker) have argued that we have “overwhelming reason” to reject and “very little” or “no reason” to think that such impossibilities exist. This partial draft argues that there are strong impossibilities and (very briefly) discusses the manner in which the existence of strong impossibilities is related to some much-discussed arguments in the philosophy of conscious experience. (The full version of the paper will ultimately include a reply to the most significant argument against strong impossibilities, and a (slightly) more involved discussion of the relevance of all of this to issues in the philosophy of conscious experience.)
McLaughlin, Brian P. (2007). Type materialism for phenomenal consciousness. In Max Velmans & Susan Schneider (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness. Blackwell.   (Google)
Minsky, Marvin L. (online). Minds are simply what brains do.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
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Robinson, William S. (1982). Sellarsian materialism. Philosophy of Science 49 (June):212-27.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Rosenthal, David M. (2004). Subjective character and reflexive content. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (1):191-198.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: I. Zombies and the Knowledge Argument John Perry
Ruediger, W. C. (1924). Monism and consciousness. Journal of Philosophy 21 (13):347-352.   (Google | More links)
Seager, William E. (1992). Metaphysics of Consciousness. Routledge and Kegan Paul.   (Cited by 22 | Annotation | Google)
Abstract: Metaphysics of Consciousness , a volume in the series Philosophical Issues in Science , discusses the philosophical issue of the nature of consciousness. William Seager argues that the purely physicalist or materialist view of human consciousness is by no means disproved and is in fact strongly supported by some developments in artificial intelligence. William Seager proceeds by addressing the problems of consciousness that remain even for a minimal physicalism. The particular modes of subjective consciousness that constitute experience threaten a paradigm of scientific understanding, labelled "physical resolution," that prospers in all other realms of inquiry. A phenomenon is physically resolved by demonstrating that its components are made up of purely physical parts and its causal efficacy is grounded in the physical properties of parts. The apparent inability to resolve physical consciousness leaves it not only inexplicable, but inexplicable in a way that threatens even a minimal physicalism. This book is distinctive in its emphasis on the legitimacy of inexplicability and its argument that consciousness transcends the paradigm of physical resolution. It will be of great use to advanced students and lecturers in philosophy
Sellars, Roy Wood (1944). Is naturalism enough? Journal of Philosophy 41 (September):533-543.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Skinner, Jane (2006). Beyond materialism: Mental capacity and naturalism, a consideration of method. Metaphilosophy 37 (1):74-91.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This article challenges the neo-Darwinist physicalist position assumed by currently prevalent naturalizing accounts of consciousness. It suggests instead an evolutionary (Deweyan) understanding of cognitive emergence and an acceptance of mental capacity as a phenomenon in its own right, differing qualitatively from, although not independent of, the physical and material world. I argue that if we accept that consciousness is an adaptation enabling survival through immediate individual intuition of the world, we may accept this metaphysics as a given. Methodological focus can then shift to investigating the, as yet untheorized, nature of consciousness itself as capacity/interconnectivity/potential. The article accepts Joseph Margolis's recent advocacy of a pragmatist approach that is "natural but not naturalizable" (Margolis 2002, 7), that is, an anti-reductionist as opposed to an eliminativist position, but it seeks to develop this position further and to give it new direction
Snowdon, Paul F. (1998). Strawson's agnostic materialism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 63 (2):455-460.   (Google | More links)
Sundström, Pär (2002). Nagel's case against physicalism. Sats 3 (2):91-108.   (Google | More links)
Trogdon, Kelly (2009). Daniel Stoljar, Ignorance and Imagination: The epistemic Origin of the problem of Consciousness. Philosophical Review 118 (2).   (Google)
Abstract: Stoljar’s book has three parts. In the first part, he discusses the “problem of experience”: though we have experiences, it isn’t clear that the experiential fits into the actual world, given that the actual world is fundamentally non-experiential. Stoljar focuses on what he views as one facet of the problem of experience, the “logical problem”, which consists of three jointly inconsistent claims: (T1) there are experiential truths; (T2) if there are experiential truths, every experiential truth is entailed by some non-experiential truth; and (T3) if there are experiential truths, not every experiential truth is entailed by some non-experiential truth. The logical problem is a problem, according to Stoljar, because each of T1–T3 is prima facie plausible. In the second part, Stoljar sets out his solution to the logical problem, the “epistemic view”, and defends it against various objections. According to the epistemic view, (i) we’re ignorant of a special type of empirical experience-relevant non-experiential truth; (ii) were we to come to understand truths of this type, we would see that the modal arguments against physicalism (i.e. the zombie and knowledge arguments) fail; and (iii) given (i) and (ii), we should reject T3 in order to resolve the logical problem. In the third part Stoljar argues that alternative solutions to the logical problem either fail or collapse into the epistemic view. While this is certainly the most careful and extended defense of the epistemic view to date (a view, by the way, in various forms, with which many seem to find sympathy), the epistemic view as Stoljar develops it faces a formidable problem. The central problem..
Vander Veer, Garrett (1976). Scientific materialism. Idealistic Studies 6 (January):1-19.   (Google)
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Witonsky, Abe (2005). A problem with perspectival physicalism: A reply to Tye. Philosophia 32 (1-4):285-293.   (Google | More links)
Zemach, Eddy M. (1997). Can a scientist be a materialist? The Philosopher 85:12-16.   (Google)

1.3g Mind-Body Problem, General

Aranyosi, István (2010). Powers and the mind–body problem. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 18 (1):57 – 72.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper proposes a new line of attack on the conceivability argument for mind-body property dualism, based on the causal account of properties, according to which properties have their conditional powers essentially. It is argued that the epistemic possibility of physical but not phenomenal duplicates of actuality is identical to a metaphysical (understood as broadly logical) possibility, but irrelevant for establishing the falsity of physicalism. The proposed attack is in many ways inspired by a standard, broadly Kripkean approach to epistemic and metaphysical modality
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Baker, Lynne Rudder, Our place in nature: Material persons and theism.   (Google)
Abstract: One of the deepest assumptions of Judaism and its offspring, Christianity, is that there is an important difference between human persons and everything else that exists in Creation. We alone are made in God’s image. We alone are the stewards of the earth. It is said in Genesis that we have “dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.” It is difficult to see how a traditional theist could deny the significance of the difference between human persons and the rest of Creation. We human persons are morally and ontologically special
Balog, Katalin (forthcoming). Acquaintance and the mind-body problem. In Christopher Hill & Simone Gozzano (eds.), Identity Theory. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: In this paper I begin to develop an account of the acquaintance that each of us has with our own conscious states and processes. The account is a speculative proposal about human mental architecture and specifically about the nature of the concepts via which we think in first personish ways about our qualia. In a certain sense my account is neutral between physicalist and dualist accounts of consciousness. As will be clear, a dualist could adopt the account I will offer while maintaining that qualia themselves are non-physical properties. In this case the non-physical nature of qualia may play no role in accounting for the features of acquaintance. But although the account could be used by a dualist, its existence provides enormous support for physicalism. In particular it provides the makings of a positive refutation (i.e., a refutation by construction) of the conceivability arguments and the Mary argument for dualism.
Beck, Lewis White (1940). The psychophysical as a pseudo-problem. Journal of Philosophy 37 (October):561-71.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Berger, George (1982). The mind-body problem, a psychological approach. Erkenntnis 17 (3).   (Google | More links)
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Blum, Paul Richard (online). Epistemology and Cosmology in Neoplatonism: Is Cognition a Mind-Body-Problem? Paper at Cosmos, Nature, Culture - A Transdisciplinary Conference Metanexus Conference July 18-21, 2009, Phoenix, Arizona. http://www.metanexus.net/conference2009/articles/Default.aspx?id=10790.   (Google)
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Abstract: Bew. van de Tarner lectures, gegeven aan het Trinity College te Cambridge in 1923.
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Abstract: Translation of: Geist, Gehirn, Verhalten.
Carington, Whately (1949). Matter, Mind And Meaning. New Haven: Yale University Press.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Carington kindly placed at my disposal, because they seem to me to illustrate some of the main themes of this book.
Chapman Brown, Harold (1933). Mind--an event in physical nature. Philosophical Review 42 (2):130-155.   (Google | More links)
Chalmers, David J. (unknown). The first person and third person views (part I). .   (Google)
Abstract: Intro to what "first person" and "third person" mean. (outline the probs of the first person) (convenience of third person vs absoluteness of first person) (explain terminology) Dominance of third person, reasons. (embarassment with first person) (division of reactions) (natural selection - those who can make the most noise) (analogy with behaviourism) Reductionism, hard line and soft line Appropriation of first person terms by reductionists
Cheng, Charles L. Y. (ed.) (1975). Philosophical Aspects of the Mind-Body Problem. Hawaii University Press.   (Google)
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Crane, Tim (2000). Dualism, monism, physicalism. Mind and Society 1 (2):73-85.   (Google)
Abstract: Dualism can be contrasted with monism, and also with physicalism. It is argued here that what is essential to physicalism is not just its denial of dualism, but the epistemological and ontological authority it gives to physical science. A physicalist view of the mind must be reductive in one or both of the following senses: it must identify mental phenomena with physical phenomena (ontological reduction) or it must give an explanation of mental phenomena in physical terms (explanatory or conceptual reduction). There is little reason to call a view which is not reductive in either of these senses “physicalism”. If reduction is rejected, then a non-physicalist form of monism is still available, which may be called “emergentism”
Patterson, Sarah & Crane, Tim (eds.) (2000). History of the Mind-Body Problem. Routledge.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This collection of new essays put the debates on the mind-body problem into historical context. The discussions range from Aristotle, Aquinas and Descartes to the origins of the qualia and intentionality
Drake, Durant (1929). Beyond monism and dualism. Journal of Philosophy 26 (15):402-407.   (Google | More links)
Dretske, Fred (1994). Mind and brain. In The Mind-Body Problem: A Guide to the Current Debate. Cambridge: Blackwell.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Duniho, Fergus (1991). The Mind/Body Problem and its Solution. Dissertation, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute   (Google)
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Abstract: This paper’s outline is as follows. In sections 1-3 I give an exposi¬tion of the Mind-Body Problem, with emphasis on what I believe to be the heart of the problem, namely, the Percepts-Qualia Nonidentity and its incompatibility with the Physical Closure Paradigm. In 4 I present the “Qualia Inaction Postulate” underlying all non-interactionist theo¬ries that seek to resolve the above problem. Against this convenient postulate I propose in section 5 the “Bafflement Ar¬gument,” which is this paper's main thesis. Sections 6-11 critically dis¬cuss attempts to dismiss the Bafflement Argument by the “Baf¬flement=Mis¬perception Equation.” Section 12 offers a refutation of all such attempts in the form of a concise “Asymmetry Proof.” Section 13 points out the bearing of the Bafflement Argument on the evolutionary role of consciousness while section 14 acknowledges the price that has to be paid for it in terms of basic physical principles. Section 15 summarizes the paper, pointing out the inescapability of interactionist dualism.
Fahrenberg, Jochen & Cheetham, Marcus (2000). The mind-body problem as seen by students of different disciplines. Journal of Consciousness Studies 7 (5):47-59.   (Cited by 9 | Google)
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Fingelkurts, Andrew A.; Fingelkurts, Alexander A. & Neves, Carlos F. H. (2010). Emergentist Monism, Biological Realism, Operations and Brain-Mind Problem. Physics of Life Reviews 7 (2):264-268.   (Google)
Abstract: We would like to thank all the commentators who responded to our target review paper for their thought-provoking ideas and for their initially positive characterization of our theorizing. Our position provoked a broad range of reactions, from enthusiastic support to some kind of opposition. Regardless of the type of the response, one common factor appears to be the plausibility of a presented attempt to apply insights from physics, biology (neuroscience), and phenomenology of mind to form a unified theoretical framework of Operational Architectonics of brain-mind functioning.
Findlay, J. N. (1972). Psyche And Cerebrum. Milwaukee: Marquette University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Fodor, Jerry A. (1981). The mind-body problem. Scientific American 244:114-25.   (Cited by 60 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Foss, Jeffrey E. (1987). Is the mind-body problem empirical? Canadian Journal of Philosophy 17 (September):505-32.   (Cited by 1 | Annotation | Google)
Gennaro, Rocco J. (1996). Mind and Brain: A Dialogue on the Mind-Body Problem. Indianapolis: Hackett.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: Topics include immortality; materlialism; Descartes's 'Divisibility Argument' for dualism; the Argument from introspection'; the problems with...
Gendlin, Eugene T. (2000). The 'mind'/'body' problem and first-person process: Three types of concepts. In Ralph D. Ellis & Natika Newton (eds.), The Caldron of Consciousness: Motivation, Affect and Self-Organization--An Anthology. Amsterdam: J Benjamins.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
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Gohnert, Herbert G. (1974). The logico-linguistic mind-brain problem and a proposed step towards its solution. Philosophy of Science 41 (March):1-14.   (Google | More links)
Golightly, Cornelius L. (1952). Mind-body, causation and correlation. Philosophy of Science 19 (July):225-227.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Graham, George (1999). Mind, brain, world. Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology 6 (3):223-225.   (Google)
Hanna, Robert & Thompson, Evan (2003). The mind-body-body problem. Theoria Et Historia Scientiarum 7:24-44.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Abstract: ? We gratefully acknowledge the Center for Consciousness Studies at the University of Arizona, Tucson, which provided a grant for the support of this work. E.T. is also supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, and the McDonnell Project in Philosophy and the Neurosciences. 1 See David Woodruff Smith,
Harnad, Stevan (online). Harnad on Dennett on Chalmers on consciousness: The mind/body problem is the feeling/function problem.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Why, oh why do we keep conflating this question, which is about the uncertainty of sensory information, with the much more profound and pertinent one, which is about the functional explicability and causal role of feeling?
_Kant: How is it possible for something even to be a thought (of mine)? What are the conditions for the_
_possibility of experience (veridical or illusory) at all?_
That's not the right question either. The right question is not even an epistemic one, about "thought" or "knowledge" (whether veridical, illusory, or otherwise) but an "aesthesiogenic" one: How and why are there any feelings at all?
Harnad, Stevan (online). There is only one mind/body problem.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In our century a Frege/Brentano wedge has gradually been driven into the mind/body problem so deeply that it appears to have split it into two: The problem of "qualia" and the problem of "intentionality." Both problems use similar intuition pumps: For qualia, we imagine a robot that is indistinguishable from us in every objective respect, but it lacks subjective experiences; it is mindless. For intentionality, we again imagine a robot that is indistinguishable from us in every objective respect but its "thoughts" lack "aboutness"; they are meaningless. I will try to show that there is a way to re-unify the mind/body problem by grounding the "language of thought" (symbols) in our perceptual categorization capacity. The model is bottom-up and hybrid symbolic/nonsymbolic
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Humphrey, Nicholas (2000). How to solve the mind-body problem. Journal Of Consciousness Studies 7 (4):5-20.   (Cited by 46 | Google | More links)
Humphrey, Nicholas (2000). In reply [reply to commentaries on "how to solve the mind-body problem"]. Humphrey, Nicholas (2000) in Reply [Reply to Commentaries on "How to Solve the Mind-Body Problem"]. [Journal (Paginated)] 7 (4):98-112.   (Google | More links)
Hut, Piet & van Fraassen, Bas (1997). Elements of reality: A dialogue. Journal of Consciousness Studies 4 (2).   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Jones, Mostyn W. (forthcoming). How to make mind-brain relations clear. Journal of Consciousness Studies.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: The mind-body problem arises because all theories about mind-brain connections are too deeply obscure to gain general acceptance. This essay suggests a clear, simple, mind-brain solution that avoids all these perennial obscurities. (1) It does so, first of all, by reworking Strawson and Stoljar’s views. They argue that while minds differ from observable brains, minds can still be what brains are physically like behind the appearances created by our outer senses. This could avoid many obscurities. But to clearly do so, it must first clear up its own deep obscurity about what brains are like behind appearances, and how they create the mind’s privacy, unity and qualia – all of which observable brains lack. (2) This can ultimately be done with a clear, simple assumption: our consciousness is the physical substance that certain brain events consist of beyond appearances. For example, the distinctive electrochemistry in nociceptor ion channels wholly consists of pain. This rejects that pain is a brain property: instead it’s a brain substance that occupies space in brains, and exerts forces by which it’s indirectly detectable via EEGs. (3) This assumption is justified because treating pains as physical substances avoids the perennial obscurities in mind-body theories. For example, this ‘clear physicalism’ avoids the obscure nonphysical pain of dualism and its spinoffs. Pain is instead an electrochemical substance. It isn’t private because it’s hidden in nonphysical minds, but instead because it’s just indirectly detected in the physical world in ways that leave its real nature hidden. (4) Clear physicalism also avoids puzzling reductions of private pains into more fundamental terms of observable brain activity. Instead pain is a hidden, private substance underlying this observable activity. Also, pain is fundamental in itself, for it’s what some brain activity fundamentally consists of. This also avoids reductive idealist claims that the world just exists in the mind. They yield obscure views on why we see a world that isn’t really out there. (5) Clear physicalism also avoids obscure claims that pain is information processing which is realizable in multiple hardwares (not just in electrochemistry). Molecular neuroscience now casts doubt on multiple realization. Also, it’s puzzling how abstract information gets ‘realized’ in brains and affects brains (compare ancient quandries on how universals get embodied in matter). A related idea is that of supervenient properties in nonreductive physicalism. They involve obscure overdetermination and emergent consciousness. Clear physicalism avoids all this. Pain isn’t an abstract property obscurely related to brains – it’s simply a substance in brains. (6) Clear physicalism also avoids problems in neuroscience. Neuroscience explains the mind’s unity in problematic ways using synchrony, attention, etc.. Clear physicalism explains unity in terms of intense neuroelectrical activity reaching continually along brain circuits as a conscious whole. This fits evidence that just highly active, highly connected circuits are fully conscious. Neuroscience also has problems explaining how qualia are actually encoded by brains, and how to get from these abstract codes to actual pain, fear, etc.. Clear physicalism explains qualia electrochemically, using growing evidence that both sensory and emotional qualia correlate with very specific electrical channels in neural receptors. Multiple-realization advocates overlook this important evidence. (7) Clear physicalism thus bridges the mind-brain gulf by showing how brains can possess the mind’s qualia, unity and privacy – and how minds can possess features of brain activity like occupying space and exerting forces. This unorthodox nonreductive physicalism may be where physicalism leads to when stripped of all its reductive and nonreductive obscurities. It offers a clear, simple mind-body solution by just filling in what neuroscience is silent about, namely, what brain matter is like behind perceptions of it.
Kim, Jaegwon (2003). Logical positivism and the mind-body problem. In Logical Empiricism: Historical & Contemporary Perspectives. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press.   (Google)
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Abstract: Currencies that are recognized as money cannot be easily distinguished from alternative currencies such as status. Numerous examples demonstrate the need for status to be recognized as a motivator alongside, at least, money. Lea & Webley (L&W) acknowledge the roles of status; however, a closer focus is warranted. (Published OnlineApril52006)
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Abstract: This paper considers whether, and how, the mind can be incorporated into structural realism. Section 1 begins with some definitions, and briefly reviews the main problems which beset structural realism. The existence of the mind is proffered as an additional problem, to which the rest of the paper is devoted. Three different philosophies of the mind are analysed, beginning with eliminative materialism, which is briefly reviewed in Section 2. The identity theory of the mind-brain relationship is critically analysed in Section 3, and the notions of supervenience and emergentism are defined. In Section 4, the functionalist approach to the mind-brain relationship is introduced, and two specific functionalist approaches---the representational theory of the mind, and connectionism---are defined and appraised. It is argued that these approaches enable structural realism to be extended to include the mind. It is also argued that structural realism can be applied to the unconscious mind, and the paper concludes with the proposal that the distinction between epistemic structural realism and ontic structural realism is also valid in the case of the mind
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Abstract: Sergio Moravia's The Enigma of the Mind (originally published in Italian as L'enigma della mente) offers a broad and lucid critical and historical survey of one of the fundamental debates in the philosophy of mind - the relationship of mind and body. This problem continues to raise deep questions concerning the nature of man. The book has two central aims. First, Professor Moravia sketches the major recent contributions to the mind/body problem from philosophers of mind. Having established this framework Professor Moravia pursues his second aim - the articulation of a particular interpretation of the mental and the mind-body problem. The book's detailed and systematic treatment of this fundamental philosophical issue make it ideal for upper-level undergraduate and graduate courses in epistemology and the philosophy of mind. It should also prove provocative reading for psychologists and cognitive scientists
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Abstract: I. The Mind-Body Problem after Kripke This essay will explore an approach to the mind-body problem that is distinct both from dualism and from the sort of conceptual reduction of the mental to the physical that proceeds via causal behaviorist or functionalist analysis of mental concepts. The essential element of the approach is that it takes the subjective phenomenological features of conscious experience to be perfectly real and not reducible to anything else--but nevertheless holds that their systematic relations to neurophysiology are not contingent but necessary
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Abstract: I. The Mind-Body Problem after Kripke This essay will explore an approach to the mind-body problem that is distinct both from dualism and from the sort of conceptual reduction of the mental to the physical that proceeds via causal behaviorist or functionalist analysis of mental concepts. The essential element of the approach is that it takes the subjective phenomenological features of conscious experience to be perfectly real and not reducible to anything else--but nevertheless holds that their systematic relations to neurophysiology are not contingent but necessary
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Abstract: This is a multi-disciplinary exploration of the history of understanding of the human mind or soul and its relationship to the body, through the course of more than two thousand years. Thirteen specially commissioned chapters, each written by a recognized expert, discuss such figures as the doctors Hippocrates and Galen, the theologians St Paul, Augustine, and Aquinas, and philosophers from Plato to Leibniz