Consciousness and the Prospects of Physicalism

Consciousness and the Prospects of Physicalism

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In this book, Derk Pereboom explores how physicalism might best be formulated and defended against the best anti-physicalist arguments. Two responses to the knowledge and conceivability arguments are set out and developed. The first exploits the open possibility that introspective representations fail to represent mental properties as they are in themselves; specifically, that introspection represents phenomenal properties as having certain characteristic qualitative
natures, which these properties might actually lack. The second response draws on the proposal that currently unknown fundamental intrinsic properties provide categorical bases for known physical properties and would also yield an account of consciousness. While there are non-physicalist versions of
this position, some are amenable to physicalism. The book's third theme is a defense of a nonreductive account of physicalism. The type of nonreductivism endorsed departs from others in that it rejects all token identity claims for psychological and microphysical entities. The deepest relation between the mental and the microphysical is constitution, where this relation is not to be explicated by the notion of identity.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 208 pages
  • 159 x 239 x 20mm | 416g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0199764034
  • 9780199764037
  • 2,284,229

Table of contents

Acknowledgments ; Introduction ; 1. The Knowledge Argument and Introspective Inaccuracy ; 2. Phenomenal Concepts and the Explanatory Gap ; 3. Conceivability Arguments and Qualitative Inaccuracy ; 4. Qualitative Inaccuracy and Recent Challenges to Conceivability Arguments ; 5. Russellian Monism I ; 6. Russellian Monism II ; 7. Robust Nonreductive Physicalism ; 8. Mental Compositional Properties ; Bibliography ; Index
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Review quote

Consciousness and the Prospects of Physicalism is an ambitious, often subtle,approach to the contemporary debate over the status of physicalism ... It advances the debate in a compelling and original way, and will be of interest to anyone working on the issues that Pereboom discusses. * Kevin Morris, Philosophy in Review * This is an excellent book. ... Consciousness and the Prospects of Physicalism advances the on-going debate in constructive ways. * Torin Alter, Mind *
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About Derk Pereboom

Derk Pereboom is Professor of Philosophy, Cornell University
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