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  1. added 2018-05-30
    Recent Work on Physicalism.Justin Tiehen - forthcoming - Analysis.
    A review of recent work on physicalism, focusing on what it means to say nothing exists over and above the physical, how "the physical" should be defined, and the causal argument for physicalism.
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  2. added 2018-05-10
    The Correlation Argument for Reductionism.Christopher Clarke - 2019 - Philosophy of Science 86 (1):76-97.
    Reductionists say things like: all mental properties are physical properties; all normative properties are natural properties. I argue that the only way to resist reductionism is to deny that causation is difference making (thus making the epistemology of causation a mystery) or to deny that properties are individuated by their causal powers (thus making properties a mystery). That is to say, unless one is happy to deny supervenience, or to trivialize the debate over reductionism. To show this, I argue that (...)
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  3. added 2018-03-19
    Simple Mindedness: In Defense of Naive Naturalism in the Philosophy of Mind.< Cont.Katalin Balog & Jennifer Hornsby - 1999 - Philosophical Review 108 (4):562.
    Hornsby is a defender of a position in the philosophy of mind she calls “naïve naturalism”. She argues that current discussions of the mind-body problem have been informed by an overly scientistic view of nature and a futile attempt by scientific naturalists to see mental processes as part of the physical universe. In her view, if naïve naturalism were adopted, the mind-body problem would disappear. I argue that her brand of anti-physicalist naturalism runs into difficulties with the problem of mental (...)
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  4. added 2018-02-17
    The Non-Reductionist's Troubles with Supervenience.Robert Francescotti - 1998 - Philosophical Studies 89 (1):105-124.
    I argue that there is a tension between three popular views in the philosophy of mind: (1) mental properties are not identical with physical properties (a version of nonreductionism), but (2) mental properties are had solely by virtue of physical properties (physicalism regarding the mind), which requires that (3) mental properties supervene on physical properties. To earn the title "physicalist," one must hold a sufficiently strong version of the supervenience thesis. But this, I argue, will be a version that undermines (...)
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  5. added 2018-01-28
    Dismantling Bodily Resurrection Arguments Against Mind-Body Dualism.Brandon Rickabaugh - 2018 - In R. Keith Loftin & Joshua Farris (eds.), Christian Physicalism? Philosophical Theological Criticisms. Lanham: Lexington Books. pp. 295-317.
    According to the Christian doctrine of bodily resurrection, human persons will have an embodied existence in eternity. Many Christian materialists, especially Lynne Rudder Baker, Trenton Merricks, and Kevin Corcoran, argue that the doctrine of bodily resurrection creates serious problems for substance dualism (dualism). These critiques argued that bodily resurrection is made trivial by dualism, that dualism makes it difficult if not impossible to explain why we need to be embodied, or that dualism should be rejected as bodily resurrection is better (...)
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  6. added 2018-01-28
    Neuroscience, Spiritual Formation, and Bodily Souls: A Critique of Christian Physicalism.Brandon Rickabaugh & C. Stephen Evans - 2018 - In R. Keith Loftin & Joshua Farris (eds.), Christian Physicalism? Philosophical Theological Criticisms. Lanham: Lexington. pp. 231-256.
    The link between human nature and human flourishing is undeniable. "A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit" (Matt. 7:18). The ontology of the human person will, therefore, ground the nature of human flourishing and thereby sanctification. Spiritual formation is the area of Christian theology that studies sanctification, the Spirit-guided process whereby disciples of Jesus are formed into the image of Jesus (Rom. 8:28-29; 2 Cor. 3:18; 2 Peter 3:18). Until the nineteenth century, (...)
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  7. added 2017-06-21
    Introduction: The Character of Physicalism.Andreas Elpidorou - 2018 - Topoi 37 (3):435-455.
    The aim of this editorial introduction is twofold. First, Sects. 1–8 offer a critical introduction to the metaphysical character of physicalism. In those sections, I present and evaluate different ways in which proponents of physicalism have made explicit the metaphysical dependence that is said to hold between the non-physical and the physical. Some of these accounts are found to be problematic; others are shown to be somewhat more promising. In the end, some important lessons are drawn and different options for (...)
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  8. added 2017-02-21
    The Unsolvability of the Mind-Body Problem Liberates the Will.Scheffel Jan - manuscript
    The mind-body problem is analyzed in a physicalist perspective. By combining the concepts of emergence and algorithmic information theory in a thought experiment employing a basic nonlinear process, it is argued that epistemically strongly emergent properties may develop in a physical system. A comparison with the significantly more complex neural network of the brain shows that also consciousness is epistemically emergent in a strong sense. Thus reductionist understanding of consciousness appears not possible; the mind-body problem does not have a reductionist (...)
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  9. added 2017-02-07
    Demystifying Emergence.David Yates - 2016 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 3:809-841.
    Are the special sciences autonomous from physics? Those who say they are need to explain how dependent special science properties could feature in irreducible causal explanations, but that’s no easy task. The demands of a broadly physicalist worldview require that such properties are not only dependent on the physical, but also physically realized. Realized properties are derivative, so it’s natural to suppose that they have derivative causal powers. Correspondingly, philosophical orthodoxy has it that if we want special science properties to (...)
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  10. added 2016-12-12
    Understanding the Dimensions of Realization.Lawrence A. Shapiro - 2008 - Journal of Philosophy 105 (4):213-222.
    Carl Gillett has defended what he calls the “dimensioned” view of the realization relation, which he contrasts with the traditional “flat” view of realization (2003, 2007; see also Gillett 2002). Intuitively, the dimensioned approach characterizes realization in terms of composition whereas the flat approach views realization in terms of occupiers of functional roles. Elsewhere we have argued that the general view of realization and multiple realization that Gillett advances is not able to discharge the theoretical duties of those relations (Shapiro (...)
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  11. added 2016-10-22
    Review of Physical Realization by Shoemaker (2009).Michael Starks - 2017 - Philosophy, Human Nature and the Collapse of Civilization Michael Starks 3rd Ed. (2017).
    Over 40 years ago I read a small grey book with metaphysics in the title which began with the words “Metaphysics is dead. Wittgenstein has killed it.” I am one of many who agree but sadly the rest of the world has not gotten the message. Shoemaker’s work is nonsense on stilts but is unusual only in that it never deviates into sense from the first paragraph to the last. At least with Dennett, Carruthers, Churchland etc one gets a breath (...)
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  12. added 2016-09-07
    Possible Worlds, Zombies, and Truth Machines.Mirza Mehmedovic - 2016 - Giornale di Metafisica 1:262-283.
    The subject of zombies is one of the most discussed and controversial topics of philosophy of mind. In this paper I will first examine the main argument of zombies, providing a summary of the current discussion. Then I will introduce a thought experiment, an epistemic window on a metaphysical scenario. By the thought experiment I will argue that zombies are logically impossible. Further I will discuss another recent epistemic window. Finally I will provide some other logical consideration to prove that (...)
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  13. added 2016-08-24
    Physicalism and Supervenience: A Case for a New Sense of Physical Duplication.Michael Roche - 2016 - Erkenntnis 81 (4):669-681.
    Physicalism is the view, roughly, that everything is physical. This thesis is often characterized in terms of a particular supervenience thesis. Central to this thesis is the idea of physical duplication. I argue that the standard way of understanding physical duplication leads—along with other claims—to a sub-optimal consequence for the physicalist. I block this consequence by shifting to an alternative sense of physical duplication. I then argue that physicalism is best characterized by a supervenience thesis that employs both the new (...)
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  14. added 2016-06-24
    An Abductive Theory of Constitution.Michael Baumgartner & Lorenzo Casini - 2017 - Philosophy of Science 84 (2):214-233.
    The first part of this paper finds Craver’s (2007) mutual manipulability theory (MM) of constitution inadequate, as it definitionally ties constitution to the feasibility of idealized experiments, which, however, are unrealizable in principle. As an alternative, the second part develops an abductive theory of constitution (NDC), which exploits the fact that phenomena and their constituents are unbreakably coupled via common causes. The best explanation for this common-cause coupling is the existence of an additional dependence relation, viz. constitution. Apart from adequately (...)
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  15. added 2016-06-18
    The Metaphysics of Scarcity.Ray Scott Percival - 1996 - The Critical Rationalist 1 (2):1 - 31.
    Natural resources are infinite. This is possible because humans can create theories whose potential goes beyond the limited imaginative capacity of the inventor. For instance, no number of people can work out all the economic potential of quantum theory. Economic Resources are created by an interaction of Karl Popper's Worlds 1, 2 and 3, the worlds of physics, psychology and the abstract products of the human mind, such as scientific theories. Knowledge such as scientific theories has unfathomable information content, is (...)
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  16. added 2015-12-24
    A Compromise Between Reductionism and Non-Reductionism.Eray Özkural - 2007 - In Carlos Gershenson, Diederik Aerts & Bruce Edmonds (eds.), Worldviews, Science, and Us: Philosophy and Complexity. World Scientific. pp. 285.
    This paper investigates the seeming incompatibility of reductionism and non-reductionism in the context of complexity sciences. I review algorithmic information theory for this purpose. I offer two physical metaphors to form a better understanding of algorithmic complexity, and I briefly discuss its advantages, shortcomings and applications. Then, I revisit the non-reductionist approaches in philosophy of mind which are often arguments from ignorance to counter physicalism. A new approach called mild non-reductionism is proposed which reconciliates the necessities of acknowledging irreducibility found (...)
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  17. added 2015-10-30
    Commentary on Frank Jackson’s From Metaphysics to Ethics. [REVIEW]Katalin Balog - 2001 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 62 (3):645–652.
    Symposium contribution on Frank Jackson’s a priori entailment thesis – which he employs to connect metaphysics and conceptual analysis. In the book he develops this thesis within the two-dimensional framework and also proposes a formal argument for it. I argue that the two-dimensional framework doesn’t provide independent support for the a priori entailment thesis since one has to build into the framework assumptions as strong as the thesis itself.
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  18. added 2015-09-21
    Précis of "E-physicalism-a physicalist theory of phenomenal consciousness".Reinaldo Bernal Velasquez, Pierre Jacob, Maximilian Kistler, David Papineau & Jérôme Dokic - 2013 - Ideas Y Valores 62 (152):268-297.
    El libro "E-physicalism - A Physicalist Theory of Phenomenal Consciousness" presenta una teoría en el área de la metafísica de la conciencia fenomenal. Está basada en las convicciones de que la experiencia subjetiva -en el sentido de Nagel - es un fenómeno real, y de que alguna variante del fisicalismo debe ser verdadera.
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  19. added 2015-06-29
    Eliminativist Undercurrents in the New Wave Model of Psychoneural Reduction.Cory Wright - 2000 - Journal of Mind and Behavior 21 (4):413-436.
    "New wave" reductionism aims at advancing a kind of reduction that is stronger than unilateral dependency of the mental on the physical. It revolves around the idea that reduction between theoretical levels is a matter of degree, and can be laid out on a continuum between a "smooth" pole (theoretical identity) and a "bumpy" pole (extremely revisionary). It also entails that both higher and lower levels of the reductive relationship sustain some degree of explanatory autonomy. The new wave predicts that (...)
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  20. added 2015-03-08
    Causal Overdetermination and Kim’s Exclusion Argument.Michael Roche - 2014 - Philosophia 42 (3):809-826.
    Jaegwon Kim’s influential exclusion argument attempts to demonstrate the inconsistency of nonreductive materialism in the philosophy of mind. Kim’s argument begins by showing that the three main theses of nonreductive materialism, plus two additional considerations, lead to a specific and familiar picture of mental causation. The exclusion argument can succeed only if, as Kim claims, this picture is not one of genuine causal overdetermination. Accordingly, one can resist Kim’s conclusion by denying this claim, maintaining instead that the effects of the (...)
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  21. added 2015-01-07
    Making Sense of Downward Causation in Manipulationism (with Illustrations From Cancer Research).Christophe Malaterre - 2011 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences (33):537-562.
    Many researchers consider cancer to have molecular causes, namely mutated genes that result in abnormal cell proliferation (e.g. Weinberg 1998). For others, the causes of cancer are to be found not at the molecular level but at the tissue level where carcinogenesis consists of disrupted tissue organization with downward causation effects on cells and cellular components (e.g. Sonnenschein and Soto 2008). In this contribution, I ponder how to make sense of such downward causation claims. Adopting a manipulationist account of causation (...)
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  22. added 2014-09-26
    Granular Spatio-Temporal Ontologies.Thomas Bittner & Barry Smith - 2003 - AAAI Symposium:12-17.
    We propose an ontological theory that is powerful enough to describe both complex spatio-temporal processes (occurrents) and the enduring entities (continuants) that participate therein. The theory is divided into two major categories of sub-theories: (sub-) theories of type SPAN and (sub-)theories of type SNAP. These theories represent two complementary perspectives on reality and result in distinct though compatible systems of categories. In SNAP we have enduring entities such as substances, qualities, roles, functions; in SPAN we have perduring entities such as (...)
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  23. added 2014-04-02
    Free Will, Determinism, and the Possibility of Doing Otherwise.Christian List - 2014 - Noûs 48 (1):156-178.
    I argue that free will and determinism are compatible, even when we take free will to require the ability to do otherwise and even when we interpret that ability modally, as the possibility of doing otherwise, and not just conditionally or dispositionally. My argument draws on a distinction between physical and agential possibility. Although in a deterministic world only one future sequence of events is physically possible for each state of the world, the more coarsely defined state of an agent (...)
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  24. added 2014-03-10
    Emerging From the Causal Drain.Richard Corry - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 165 (1):29-47.
    For over 20 years, Jaegwon Kim’s Causal Exclusion Argument has stood as the major hurdle for non-reductive physicalism. If successful, Kim’s argument would show that the high-level properties posited by non-reductive physicalists must either be identical with lower-level physical properties, or else must be causally inert. The most prominent objection to the Causal Exclusion Argument—the so-called Overdetermination Objection—points out that there are some notions of causation that are left untouched by the argument. If causation is simply counterfactual dependence, for example, (...)
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  25. added 2014-01-10
    Methodological Individualism and Holism in Political Science: A Reconciliation.Christian List & Kai Spiekermann - 2013 - American Political Science Review 107 (4):629-643.
    Political science is divided between methodological individualists, who seek to explain political phenomena by reference to individuals and their interactions, and holists (or nonreductionists), who consider some higher-level social entities or properties such as states, institutions, or cultures ontologically or causally significant. We propose a reconciliation between these two perspectives, building on related work in philosophy. After laying out a taxonomy of different variants of each view, we observe that (i) although political phenomena result from underlying individual attitudes and behavior, (...)
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  26. added 2013-12-09
    Emergent Chance.Christian List & Marcus Pivato - 2015 - Philosophical Review 124 (1):119-152.
    We offer a new argument for the claim that there can be non-degenerate objective chance (“true randomness”) in a deterministic world. Using a formal model of the relationship between different levels of description of a system, we show how objective chance at a higher level can coexist with its absence at a lower level. Unlike previous arguments for the level-specificity of chance, our argument shows, in a precise sense, that higher-level chance does not collapse into epistemic probability, despite higher-level properties (...)
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  27. added 2013-12-08
    My Brain Made Me Do It: The Exclusion Argument Against Free Will, and What’s Wrong with It.Christian List & Peter Menzies - 2017 - In H. Beebee, C. Hitchcock & H. Price (eds.), Making a Difference. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    We offer a critical assessment of the “exclusion argument” against free will, which may be summarized by the slogan: “My brain made me do it, therefore I couldn't have been free”. While the exclusion argument has received much attention in debates about mental causation (“could my mental states ever cause my actions?”), it is seldom discussed in relation to free will. However, the argument informally underlies many neuroscientific discussions of free will, especially the claim that advances in neuroscience seriously challenge (...)
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  28. added 2013-12-08
    Mentalism Versus Behaviourism in Economics: A Philosophy-of-Science Perspective.Christian List & Franz Dietrich - 2016 - Economics and Philosophy 32 (2):249-281.
    Behaviourism is the view that preferences, beliefs, and other mental states in social-scientific theories are nothing but constructs re-describing people's behaviour. Mentalism is the view that they capture real phenomena, on a par with the unobservables in science, such as electrons and electromagnetic fields. While behaviourism has gone out of fashion in psychology, it remains influential in economics, especially in ‘revealed preference’ theory. We defend mentalism in economics, construed as a positive science, and show that it fits best scientific practice. (...)
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  29. added 2013-12-05
    The Causal Autonomy of the Special Sciences.Peter Menzies & Christian List - 2010 - In Cynthia Macdonald & Graham Macdonald (eds.), Emergence in Mind. Oxford University Press.
    The systems studied in the special sciences are often said to be causally autonomous, in the sense that their higher-level properties have causal powers that are independent of those of their more basic physical properties. This view was espoused by the British emergentists, who claimed that systems achieving a certain level of organizational complexity have distinctive causal powers that emerge from their constituent elements but do not derive from them.2 More recently, non-reductive physicalists have espoused a similar view about the (...)
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  30. added 2013-11-18
    Beyond Program Explanation.Cynthia Macdonald & Graham Macdonald - 2006 - In Geoffrey Brennan, Robert E. Goodin & Michael A. Smith (eds.), Common Minds: Essays in Honour of Philip Pettit. Oxford University Press. pp. 1--27.
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  31. added 2013-06-22
    Einige Bemerkungen zum Prinzip der kausalen Abgeschlossenheit des Physischen.Andreas Hüttemann - 2013 - In Jan Michel & Gernot Münster (eds.), Die Suche nach dem Geist. mentis.
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  32. added 2013-02-06
    Defending the Piggyback Principle Against Shapiro and Sober's Empirical Approach.Joseph A. Baltimore - 2010 - Synthese 175 (2):151-168.
    Jaegwon Kim’s supervenience/exclusion argument attempts to show that non-reductive physicalism is incompatible with mental causation. This influential argument can be seen as relying on the following principle, which I call “the piggyback principle”: If, with respect to an effect, E, an instance of a supervenient property, A, has no causal powers over and above, or in addition to, those had by its supervenience base, B, then the instance of A does not cause E (unless A is identical with B). In (...)
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  33. added 2011-05-31
    Nonreductive Physicalism and the Limits of the Exclusion Principle.Christian List & Peter Menzies - 2009 - Journal of Philosophy 106 (9):475-502.
    It is often argued that higher-level special-science properties cannot be causally efficacious since the lower-level physical properties on which they supervene are doing all the causal work. This claim is usually derived from an exclusion principle stating that if a higherlevel property F supervenes on a physical property F* that is causally sufficient for a property G, then F cannot cause G. We employ an account of causation as differencemaking to show that the truth or falsity of this principle is (...)
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  34. added 2011-03-18
    Cutting God in Half.Nicholas Maxwell - 2002 - Philosophy Now 35 (35):22-25.
    In order to solve the problem of the monstrous acts that an all-powerful, all-knowing God would daily be performing, we need to sever the God of Power from the God of Value. The former is the underlying dynamic unity in the physical universe, eternal, omnipresent, all-powerful, but an It, and thus not capable of knowing what It does. It can be forgiven the terrible things It does. The latter is what is of most value associated with our human world - (...)
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  35. added 2011-03-16
    Understanding Sensations.Nicholas Maxwell - 1968 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 46 (2):127-146.
    My aim in this paper is to defend a version of the brain process theory, or identity thesis, which differs in one important respect from the theory put forward by J.J.C. Smart. I shall argue that although the sensations which a person experiences are, as a matter of contingent fact, brain processes, nonetheless there are facts about sensations which cannot be described or understood in terms of any physical theory. These 'mental' facts cannot be described by physics for the simple (...)
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  36. added 2011-02-28
    Non-Reductive Physicalism, Mental Causation and the Nature of Actions.Markus E. Schlosser - 2009 - In H. Leitgeb & A. Hieke (eds.), Reduction: Between the Mind and the Brain. Ontos.
    Given some reasonable assumptions concerning the nature of mental causation, non-reductive physicalism faces the following dilemma. If mental events cause physical events, they merely overdetermine their effects (given the causal closure of the physical). If mental events cause only other mental events, they do not make the kind of difference we want them to. This dilemma can be avoided if we drop the dichotomy between physical and mental events. Mental events make a real difference if they cause actions. But actions (...)
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  37. added 2011-02-28
    New Hope for Non-Reductive Physicalism.Julie Yoo - 2008 - In Alexander Hieke & Hannes Leitget (eds.), Papers of the 31st International Wittgenstein Symposium: Reduction and Elimination in Philosophy and the Sciences.
    Non-reductive physicalism is committed to two theses: first, that mental properties are ontologically autonomous, and second, that physicalism is true. Jaegwon Kim has argued that this view is unstable – to honor one thesis, one must abandon the other. In this paper, I present an account of property realization that addresses Kim’s criticism and that explains how the two theses are indeed comfortably compatible.
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  38. added 2009-07-13
    Physicalism and Sparse Ontology.Kelly Trogdon - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 143 (2):147-165.
    A major stumbling block for non-reductive physicalism is Kim’s disjunctive property objection. In this paper I bring certain issues in sparse ontology to bear on the objection, in particular the theses of priority monism and priority pluralism. Priority pluralism (or something close to it, anyway) is a common ontological background assumption, so in the first part of the paper I consider whether the disjunctive property objection applies with equal force to non-reductive physicalism on the assumption that priority monism is instead (...)
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  39. added 2008-12-31
    Kim on Overdetermination, Exclusion, and Nonreductive Physicalism.Paul Raymont - 2003 - In Sven Walter & Heinz-Dieter Heckmann (eds.), Physicalism and Mental Causation. Imprint Academic.
    An analysis and rebuttal of Jaegwon Kim's reasons for taking nonreductive physicalism to entail the causal irrelevance of mental features to physical phenomena, particularly the behaviour of human bodies.
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