Emergentisms, Ancient and Modern

Mind 120 (479):671-703 (2011)
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Jaegwon Kim has argued (Kim 2006a) that the two key issues for emergentism are to give a positive characterization of the emergence relation and to explain the possibility of downward causation. This paper proposes an account of emergence which provides new answers to these two key issues. It is argued that an appropriate emergence relation is characterized by a notion of ‘transformation’, and that the real key issue for emergentism is located elsewhere than the places Kim identifies. The paper builds on Victor Caston’s important work on ancient philosophy of mind (Caston 1997, 2001), but appeals to sources he has not considered.

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Jonardon Ganeri
University of Toronto, St. George Campus


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