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The Value of Consciousness

Analysis 79 (3):503-520 (2019)

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  1. Why the Epistemic Objection Against Using Sentience as Criterion of Moral Status is Flawed.Leonard Dung - 2022 - Science and Engineering Ethics 28 (6):1-15.
    According to a common view, sentience is necessary and sufficient for moral status. In other words, whether a being has intrinsic moral relevance is determined by its capacity for conscious experience. The _epistemic objection_ derives from our profound uncertainty about sentience. According to this objection, we cannot use sentience as a _criterion_ to ascribe moral status in practice because we won’t know in the foreseeable future which animals and AI systems are sentient while ethical questions regarding the possession of moral (...)
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  • The Neutrality of Life.Andrew Y. Lee - forthcoming - Australasian Journal of Philosophy:1-19.
    Some think that life is worth living not merely because of the goods and the bads within it, but also because life itself is good. I explain how this idea can be formalized by associating each version of the view with a function from length of life to the value generated by life itself. Then I argue that every version of the view that life itself is good faces some version of the following dilemma: either (1) good human lives are (...)
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  • Sentientism, Motivation, and Philosophical Vulcans.Luke Roelofs - forthcoming - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly.
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  • A Map of Consciousness Studies: Questions and Approaches.Takuya Niikawa - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11.
    This article aims to present a map of consciousness studies, which consists of a list of fundamental questions about consciousness and existing approaches to them. The question list includes five fundamental categories: Definitional, Phenomenological, Epistemological, Ontological, and Axiological. Each fundamental category is divided into more determinate questions. Existing approaches to each question are also classified into a few groups, presenting principal researchers who take each kind of approach. In the final section, I demonstrate the usefulness of the proposed map of (...)
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  • Human Cerebral Organoids and Consciousness: A Double-Edged Sword.Andrea Lavazza - 2020 - Monash Bioethics Review 38 (2):105-128.
    Human cerebral organoids are three-dimensional in vitro cell cultures that mimic the developmental process and organization of the developing human brain. In just a few years this technique has produced brain models that are already being used to study diseases of the nervous system and to test treatments and drugs. Currently, HCOs consist of tens of millions of cells and have a size of a few millimeters. The greatest limitation to further development is due to their lack of vascularization. However, (...)
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  • Does illusionism imply skepticism of animal consciousness?Leonard Dung - 2022 - Synthese 200 (3):1-19.
    Illusionism about consciousness entails that phenomenal consciousness doesn’t exist. The distribution question concerns the distribution of consciousness in the animal kingdom. Skepticism of animal consciousness is the view that few or no kinds of animals possess consciousness. Thus, illusionism seems to imply a skeptical view on the distribution question. However, I argue that illusionism and skepticism of animal consciousness are actually orthogonal to each other. If illusionism is true, then phenomenal consciousness does not ground intrinsic value so that the non-existence (...)
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  • Consciousness and Welfare Subjectivity.Gwen Bradford - forthcoming - Noûs.
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  • Speciesism and Sentientism.Andrew Y. Lee - 2022 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 29 (3-4):205-228.
    Many philosophers accept both of the following claims: (1) consciousness matters morally, and (2) species membership doesn’t matter morally. In other words, many reject speciesism but accept what we might call 'sentientism'. But do the reasons against speciesism yield analogous reasons against sentientism, just as the reasons against racism and sexism are thought to yield analogous reasons against speciesism? This paper argues that speciesism is disanalogous to sentientism (as well as racism and sexism). I make a case for the following (...)
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  • Well-Being.Roger Crisp - 2013 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • The Value of Consciousness in Medicine.Diane O'Leary - 2021 - In Uriah Kriegel (ed.), Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Mind, Volume 1. Oxford, UK: pp. 65-85.
    We generally accept that medicine’s conceptual and ethical foundations are grounded in recognition of personhood. With patients in vegetative state, however, we’ve understood that the ethical implications of phenomenal consciousness are distinct from those of personhood. This suggests a need to reconsider medicine’s foundations. What is the role for recognition of consciousness (rather than personhood) in grounding the moral value of medicine and the specific demands of clinical ethics? I suggest that, according to holism, the moral value of medicine is (...)
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