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Abstract: Most philosophers in the analytical philosophy answer the question what personal identity is in psychological terms. Arguments for substantiating this view are mainly based on thought experiments of brain transfer cases and the like in which persons change brains. However, in these thought experiments the remaining part of the body plays only a passive part. In this paper I argue that the psychological approach of personal identity cannot be maintained, if the whole body is actively involved in the analysis, and that the body is an intrinsic part of what I am as a person.
Abstract: Olson (1997a) tries to refute the Psychological Approach to personal identity with his Fetus Argument, and Mackie (1999) aims to do the same with the Death Argument. With the help of a suggestion made by Baker (1999), the following discussion shows that these arguments fail. In the process of defending the Psychological Approach, it is made clear exactly what one is and is not committed to as a proponent of the theory
Abstract: Tyler Burge has recently argued that quasi-memory-based psychological reductionist accounts of diachronic personal identity are deeply problematic. According to Burge, these accounts either fail to include appropriately de se elements or presuppose facts about diachronic personal identity—facts of the very kind that the accounts are supposed to explain. Neither of these objections is compelling. The first is based in confusion about the version of reductionism to which it putatively applies. The second loses its force when we recognize that reductionism is a metaphysical thesis, not an epistemological one
Abstract: Scott Campbell has recently defended the psychological approach to personal identity over time by arguing that a person is literally a series of mental events. Rejecting four-dimensionalism about the persistence of physical objects, Campbell regards constitutionalism as the main rival version of the psychological approach. He argues that his "series view" has two clear advantages over constitutionalism: it avoids the "two thinkers" objection and it allows a person to change bodies. In addition, Campbell suggests a reply to the objection, often raised against views such as his, that thoughts must be distinct from their thinker. In this paper, I argue that Campbell's responses to the "two thinkers" and the "thoughts/thinker" objections are unsuccessful. Furthermore, his reply to the latter leads to four-dimensionalism of the kind he wanted to avoid – and this view too allows a person to change bodies. Moreover, I argue that it speaks against the series view that generalised versions of it fare much more poorly than do generalised versions of constitutionalism and four-dimensionalism
Abstract: "Quasi-memories," necessarily presupposing a distinction between an "experiencing" and a "remembering" person, are considered by Parfit and Shoemaker as necessary and/or sufficient criteria for personal identity. However, the concept of "q-memories" is rejected by Schechtman since, according to her, neither "content" and "experience" can be separated from each other in "q-memories" ("principal inseparability") nor can they be distinguished from delusions/confabulations ("principal indistinguishability"). The purpose of the present paper is to demonstrate that, relying on a neurophilosophical approach, both arguments can be rejected. Neuropsychological research shows that "contents" of memories are classified according to the accompanying psychological state such that the same "content" can be classified either as auto- or heterobiographical by the respective "experience." Since "content" and "experience" can be separated from each other, the argument of "principal inseparability" must be rejected on empirical grounds. In addition, as demonstrated in an example of a schizophrenic patient, "q-memories" can be distinguished from delusions/confabulations considering the ability to distinguish between different sources of autobiographical memories as a differential criterion. In conclusion, both arguments by Schechtman against the concept of "q-memories" have to be rejected on the basis of neurophilosophical considerations. Consequently, the concept of "q-memories" can be considered as compatible with current empirical knowledge
Abstract: Sydney Shoemaker argues that the functionalist theory of mind entails a psychological-continuity view of personal identity, as well as providing a defense of that view against a crucial objection. I show that his view has surprising consequences, e.g. that no organism could have mental properties and that a thing's mental properties fail to supervene even weakly on its microstructure and surroundings. I then argue that the view founders on "fission" cases and rules out our being material things. Functionalism tells us little if anything about personal identity
Abstract: A widely accepted view in the discussion of personal identity is that the notion of psychological continuity expresses a one-many or many-one relation. I argue that the belief is unfounded. Briefly: a notion of psychological continuity expresses a one-many or many-one relation only if it includes as a constituent psychological properties whose relation with their bearer is one-many or many-one; but the relation between an indexical psychological state (a psychological state with indexical content) and its bearer in which it is first tokened is not a one-many or many-one relation. It follows that not all types of psychological continuity may take a one-many or many-one form. Since the Lockean account of personal identity relies on the availability of a notion of psychological continuity featuring indexical psychological states, the conclusion of this paper cast strong doubt on the plausibility of the Lockean theory.