Organismal Superposition and Death

Perspectives in Biology and Medicine 67 (1):22-30 (2024)
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Abstract

ABSTRACT:Organismal superposition holds that the same individual both is and is not an organism, as a consequence of organismal pluralism. When coupled with the assumption that death is the cessation of an organism, this entails that there is no unique answer as to whether brain death is biological death. This essay argues that concerns about organismal pluralism and superposition do not undermine a theory of biological death, nor entail any metaphysical indeterminacy about the biological vital status of a brain-dead individual.

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Michael Nair-Collins
Florida State University

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