This mode searches for entries containing all the entered words in their title, author, date, comment field, or in any of many other fields showing on OPC pages.
This mode searches for entries containing the text string you entered in their author field. Note that the database does not have first names for all authors, so it is preferable to search only by surnames. If you search for a full name or a name with an initial, enter it in the format used internally, namely the "Lastname, Firstname" or "Lastname, F." format.
This mode differs from the all fields mode in two respects. First, some information not publicly available on the site is searched, e.g., abstracts and excerpts gathered by the crawler, which are not always accurate but can help broaden one's search. Second, you may prefix any term with a '+' or '-' to narrow the search to entries containing it or not containing it, respectively. Terms which are not prefixed by a '+' are not mandatory. Instead, they are weighed depending on their frequency in order to determine the best search results. You may also search for a literal string composed of several words by putting them in double quotation marks (").
Note that short and / or common words are ignored by the search engine.
Try PhilPapers to find published items which are available on a subscription basis.
Abstract: Is it ethical to deceive the individuals who participate in psychological experiments for methodological reasons? We argue against an absolute ban on the use of deception in psychological research. The potential benefits of many psychological experiments involving deception consist in allowing individuals and society to gain morally significant self-knowledge that they could not otherwise gain. Research participants gain individual self-knowledge which can help them improve their autonomous decision-making. The community gains collective self-knowledge that, once shared, can play a role in shaping education, informing policies and in general creating a more efficient and just society.
Abstract: I know various contingent truths about my environment by perception. For example, by looking, I know that there is a computer before me; by hearing, I know that someone is talking in the corridor; by tasting, I know that the coffee has no sugar. I know these things because I have some built-in mechanisms specialized for detecting the state of my environment. One of these mechanisms, for instance, is presently transducing electromagnetic radiation (in a narrow band of wavelengths) coming from the computer and the desk on which it sits. How that mechanism works is a complicated story—to put it mildly—and of course much remains unknown. But we can at least produce more-or- less plausible sketches of how the mechanism can start from retinal irradiation, and go on to deliver knowledge of my surroundings. Moreover, in the sort of world we inhabit, specialized detection mechanisms that are causally affected by the things they detect have no serious competition—seeing the computer by seeing an idea of the computer in the divine mind, for example, is not a feasible alternative
Abstract: This paper argues that a Cartesian belief in the self-transparency of minds might actually be an innate aspect of our mind-reading faculty. But it acknowledges that some crucial evidence needed to establish this claim hasn’t been looked for or collected. What we require is evidence that a belief in the self-transparency of mind is universal to the human species. The paper closes with a call to anthropologists (and perhaps also developmental psychologists), who are in a position to collect such evidence, encouraging them to do so
Abstract: This paper will argue that there is no such thing as introspective access to judgments and decisions. It won’t challenge the existence of introspective access to perceptual and imagistic states, nor to emotional feelings and bodily sensations. On the contrary, the model presented in Section 2 presumes such access. Hence introspection is here divided into two categories: introspection of propositional attitude events, on the one hand, and introspection of broadly perceptual events, on the other. I shall assume that the latter exists while arguing that the former doesn’t (or not in the case of judgments and decisions, at least). Section 1 makes some preliminary points and distinctions, and outlines the scope of the argument. Section 2 presents and motivates the general model of introspection that predicts a divided result. Section 3 provides independent evidence for the conclusion that judgments and decisions aren’t introspectable. Section 4 then replies to a number of objections to the argument, the most important of which is made from the perspective of so-called “dual systems theories” of belief formation and decision making. The upshot is a limited form of eliminativism about introspection, in respect of at least two core categories of propositional attitude
Abstract: In this chapter I attempt to curb the pretensions of simulationism. I argue that it is, at best, an epistemological doctrine of limited scope. It may explain how we go about attributing beliefs and desires to others, and perhaps to ourselves, in some cases. But simulation cannot provide the fundamental basis of our conception of, or knowledge of, minded agency
Abstract: John Campbell (1999) has recently maintained that the phenomenon of thought insertion as it is manifested in schizophrenic patients should be described as a case in which the subject is introspectively aware of a certain thought and yet she is wrong in identifying whose thought it is. Hence, according to Campbell, the phenomenon of thought insertion might be taken as a counterexample to the view that introspection-based mental selfascriptions are logically immune to error through misidentification (IEM, hereafter). Thus, if Campbell is right, it would not be true that when the subject makes a mental self-ascription on the basis of introspective awareness of a given mental state, there is no possible world in which she could be wrong as to whether it is really she who has that mental state. Notice the interesting interdisciplinary implications of Campbell’s project: on the one hand, a fairly precise notion elaborated in philosophy such as IEM (and the related notion of error through misidentification, EM hereafter) is used to describe a characteristic symptom of schizophrenia.1 On the other hand, such a phenomenon, described in the way proposed, is taken to be a possible counterexample to a sort of “philosophical dogma” such as IEM of introspection-based non-inferential mental self-ascriptions. In the first section of the paper I will point out the characteristic features of EM and explain logical immunity to error through misidentification of introspection-based mental self-ascriptions; in the second section I will consider the case of thought insertion in more detail and show why, after all, it is not a counterexample to the view that introspectionbased mental self-ascriptions are logically IEM. Finally, I will offer a re-description of the phenomenon of thought insertion
Abstract: In this paper, I propose an account of self-knowledge for desires. According to this account, we form beliefs about our own desires on the basis of our grounds for those desires. First, I distinguish several types of desires and their corresponding grounds. Next, I make the case that we usually believe that we have a certain desire on the basis of our grounds for it. Then, I argue that a belief formed thus is epistemically privileged. Finally, I compare this account to two other similar accounts of self-knowledge
Abstract: I defend one leading strand of Descartes's thought against feminist criticism. I will show that Descartes's “first-person” approach to our knowledge of minds, which has been criticized on feminist grounds, is at least compatible with key feminist views. My argument suggests that this strand of Cartesianism may even bolster some central feminist positions
Abstract: "Self-knowledge" is commonly used in philosophy to refer to knowledge of one's particular mental states, including one's beliefs, desires, and sensations. It is also sometimes used to refer to knowledge about a persisting self -- its ontological nature, identity conditions, or character traits. At least since Descartes, most philosophers have believed that self-knowledge is importantly different from knowledge of the world external to oneself, including others' thoughts. But there is little agreement about what precisely distinguishes self-knowledge from knowledge in other realms. Partially because of this disagreement, philosophers have endorsed competing accounts of how we acquire self-knowledge. These accounts have important consequences for the scope of mental content, for mental ontology, and for personal identity
Abstract: It is often said that we can know our own thoughts more directly or with more certainty than anyone else can know them. And this disparity is usually taken to be principled, in that we would not be the rational, reflective beings that we are without it. My aim is to trace the consequences of a principled disparity between self-knowledge and other-knowledge for what may be termed the “mechanics ” of self-knowledge . I use a new thought experiment to show that if introspective states are merely causally related to introspected thoughts, the disparity between self-knowledge and other-knowledge is not truly principled. An account of self-knowledge adequate to a truly principled disparity will allow that thought tokens can be
Abstract: 1. First person authority: the received explanation Over a wide range of psychological attributes, a mature speaker seems to enjoy a defeasible form of authority on how things are with him. The received explanation of this is epistemic, and rests upon a cognitive assumption. The speaker’s word is a authoritative because when things are thus-and-so with him, then normally he knows that they are. This is held to be because the speaker has direct and privileged access to the contents of his consciousness by means of introspection, conceived as a faculty of inner sense. Like perceptual knowledge, introspective knowledge is held to be direct and non-evidential. Accordingly, the first-person utterances ‘I have a pain’, ‘I believe that p’, ‘I intend to V’ are taken to be descriptions of what is evident to inner sense. Many classical thinkers held such subjective knowledge to be not only immediate, but also infallible and indubitable. The challenge to the received conceptions came from Wittgenstein. He denied the cognitive assumption, arguing that it cannot be said of me at all (except perhaps as a joke) that I know that I am in pain. For what is that supposed to mean — except perhaps that I am in pain?1 If it makes no sense to say that one knows that one is in pain, then the epistemic explanation is a non-starter, since it explains the special authoritative status of a person’s avowal of pain by reference to the putative fact that the subject of pain knows, normally knows, or cannot but know, that he is in pain when he is. It is important to note that Wittgenstein did not mechanically generalize the case of pain across the whole domain of firstperson utterances. The case of pain constitutes only one pole of a range of such utterances. Avowals and averrals of belief and intention approximate the other pole, and require independent analysis and grammatical description..
Abstract: Recently, some philosophers have claimed that consciousness has an important epistemological role to play in the introspective self-ascription of one’s own mental states. This is the thesis of the epistemological role of consciousness for introspective self-knowledge. I will criticize BonJour’s account of the role of consciousness for introspection. He does not provide any reason for believing that conscious states are epistemically better off than non-conscious states. Then I will sketch a representationalist account of how the thesis could be true. Conscious states are available to the subject in a very special way in which non-conscious states are not available. This is the first part of the explanation. The crucial further element in the representationalist account is what I would like to call the ‘introspective mode of mind’. A mind can operate in certain ways or modes – modes of mind. Introspection normally takes place in the introspective mode of mind, judgments about one’s environment in the mode of ‘taking one’s appearances at face value’. And there probably are other modes of mind. The introspective mode of mind is characterized by the special way or framework in which cognitive capacities are employed
Abstract: Knowing one’s past thoughts and attitudes is a vital sort of self-knowledge. In the absence of memorial impressions to serve as evidence, we face a pressing question of how such self-knowledge is possible. Recently, philosophers of mind have argued that self-knowledge of past attitudes supervenes on rationality. I examine two kinds of argument for this supervenience claim, one from cognitive dynamics, and one from practical rationality, and reject both. I present an alternative account, on which knowledge of past attitudes is inferential knowledge, and depends upon contingent facts of one’s rationality and consistency. Failures of self-knowledge are better explained by the inferential account
Abstract: ‘[I]ntrospection’ is just a convenient word to describe our way of knowing what is going on in our own mind, and anyone convinced that we know—at least sometimes—what is going on in our own mind and therefore, that we have a mind and, therefore, that we are not zombies, must believe that introspection is the answer we are looking for. I, too, believe in introspection
Abstract: Self-Knowledge and the First-Person1 It is a familiar view in the philosophy of mind and action is that for a thought or attitude to constitute a reason for an action is for it to render intelligible, in the light of norms of rationality or reason, that action. However, I can make sense of your actions in this way by crediting you with attitudes that I myself do not hold. Equally, you can do this for my actions. So not all reasons for one’s actions are one’s own reasons. What more is involved in a reason’s being one’s own reason for acting?
Abstract: Introspection plays a crucial role in Modern philosophy in two different ways. From the beginnings of Modern philosophy, introspection has been used a tool for philosophical exploration in a variety of thought experiments. But Modern philosophers (e.g., Locke and Hume) also tried to characterize the nature of introspection as a psychological phenomenon. In contemporary philosophy, introspection is still frequently used in thought experiments. And in the analytic tradition, philosophers have tried to characterize conceptually necessary features of introspection.2 But over the last several decades, philosophers have devoted relatively little attention to the cognitive characteristics of introspection. This has begun to change, impelled largely by a fascinating body of work on how children and autistic individuals understand the mind.3 In a pair of recent papers, Stephen Stich and I have drawn on this empirical work to develop an account of introspection or self-awareness.4 In this paper, I will elaborate and defend this cognitive theory of introspection further and argue that if the account is right, it may have important ramifications for psychological and philosophical debates over the self
Abstract: A self-ascription is a thought or sentence in which a predicate is self-consciously ascribed to oneself. Self-ascriptions are best expressed using the first-person pronoun. Mental self-ascriptions are ascriptions to oneself of mental predicates (predicates that designate mental properties), non-mental self-ascriptions are ascriptions to oneself of non-mental predicates (predicates that designate non-mental properties). It is often claimed that there is a range of self-ascriptions that are immune to error through misidentification relative to the first-person pronoun (IEM for short). What this means, and exactly which self-ascriptions are properly classed as IEM, is a topic hotly disputed. Some claim that only mental self-ascriptions are IEM, others claim that some non-mental self-ascriptions are IEM. Before this question can be decided, it needs to be judged exactly what it means to say that a self-ascription is IEM. And here we stumble across the fact that there are, at least, two non-equivalent ways of defining the phenomenon1. I will be claiming that one of these definitions should be rejected
Abstract: 1. Much of modern and contemporary philosophy of mind in the ‘analytic’ tradition has presupposed, since Descartes, what might be called a realist view about the mind and the mental. According to this view there are independently existing, determinate items (states, events, dispositions or relations) that are the truth-conferrers of our ascriptions of mental predicates. The view is also a cognitivist one insofar as it holds that when we correctly ascribe such a predicate to an individual the correctness consists in the discovery of a determinate fact of the matter about the state the individual is in ( a state which is somehow cognized by the ascriber. Disputes have arisen about the nature of the truth-conferrers (e.g., whether they are physical or not) and about the status and the nature of the individual’s own authority about the state he is in. A dissenting position in philosophy of mind would have to be handled carefully. It would, most importantly, need to allow for the objectivity of ascriptions of mental predicates at least insofar as it made sense to reject some and accept others on appropriate grounds. Perhaps such a position in the philosophy of mind can be likened in at least one way to what David Wiggins has characterised as a doctrine of ‘cognitive underdetermination’ about moral or practical judgments. In comparing his position of cognitive underdetermination about moral or practical judgments to some things Wittgenstein has said about the philosophy of mathematics, Wiggins suggests that, ‘In the assertibility (or truth) of mathematical statements we see what perhaps we can never see in the assertibility of empirical (such as geographical or historical) statements: the compossibility of objectivity, discovery, and invention.’
Abstract: An account of the source of ﬁrst-person knowledge is essential not just for phenomenology, but for anyone who takes seriously the apparent evidence that we each have a distinctive access to knowing what we experience. One standard way to account for the source of ﬁrst-person knowledge is by appeal to a kind of inner observation of the passing contents of one’s own mind, and phenomenology is often thought to rely on introspection. I argue, however, that Husserl’s method of phenomenological reduction was designed precisely to ﬁnd a route to knowledge of the structures of consciousness that was independent of any appeal to observation of one’s own mental states. The goals of this essay are to explicate Husserl’s method of phenomenological reduction in contemporary terms that (1) show its distance from all inner-observation accounts, (2) exhibit its kinship to and historical inﬂuence on outer-observation accounts of selfknowledge popularized by Sellars, and (3) demonstrate that a contemporary ‘cognitive transformation’ view based on Husserl’s method may provide a viable contribution to contemporary debates about the source of self-knowledge
Abstract: Jordi Fernández has recently responded to my objection that his 'extrospectionist' account of self-knowledge posits necessary and sufficient conditions for introspective justification which are neither necessary nor sufficient. I show that my criticisms survive his response unscathed.