The location of pains

Philosophical Papers 36 (2):171-205 (2007)
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Abstract

Perceptualists say that having a pain in a body part consists in perceiving the part as instantiating some property. I argue that perceptualism makes better sense of the connections between pain location and the experiences undergone by people in pain than three alternative accounts that dispense with perception. Turning to fellow perceptualists, I also reject ways in which David Armstrong and Michael Tye understand and motivate perceptualism, and I propose an alternative interpretation, one that vitiates a pair of objections—due to John Hyman—concerning the meaning of ‘Amy has a pain in her foot’ and the idea of bodily sensitivity. Perceptualism, I conclude, remains our best account of the location of pains.

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David Bain
Glasgow University

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