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Knowledge, Possibility, and Consciousness by John (Stanford University) Perry
  

Knowledge, Possibility, and Consciousness

Part of the Jean Nicod Lectures Series

Synopsis

Knowledge, Possibility, and Consciousness by John (Stanford University) Perry

Physicalism is the idea that if everything that goes on in the universe is physical, our consciousness and feelings must also be physical. Ever since Descartes formulated the mind-body problem, a long line of philosophers has found the physicalist view to be preposterous. According to John Perry, the history of the mind-body problem is, in part, the slow victory of physical monism over various forms of dualism. Each new version of dualism claims that surely something more is going on with us than the merely physical.In this book Perry defends a view that he calls antecedent physicalism. He takes on each of three major arguments against physicalism, showing that they pose no threat to antecedent physicalism. These arguments are the zombie argument (that there is a possible world inhabited by beings that are physically indiscernible from us but not conscious), the knowledge argument (that we can know facts about our own feelings that are not just physical facts, thereby proving physicalism false), and the modal argument (that the identity of sensation and brain state is contingent, but since there is no such thing as contingent identity, sensations are not brain states).

Reviews

Anyone interested in the philosophy of mind will want to read this book. * Choice *


About the Author

John Perry is the H.W. Stuart Professor of Philosophy at Stanford University.

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Book Info

Publication date

24th January 2003

Author

John (Stanford University) Perry

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Publisher

Bradford Books an imprint of MIT Press Ltd

Format

Paperback
238 pages

Categories

Philosophy of mind
Cognition & cognitive psychology

ISBN

9780262661355

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