How to Achieve the Physicalist Dream Theory of Consciousness: Identity or Grounding?

In G. Rabin (ed.), Grounding and Consciousness (forthcoming)
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Abstract
I argue for three claims. First, there is a strong argument for identity physicalism (Lewis, Sider, Dorr) over dualism. It does achieve the physicalist dream of a maximally simple and uniform view of reality. However, there are also strong arguments against identity physicalism concerning the special nature of conscious experiences. Second, although nonidentity "ground" physicalism (Campbell, Johnston, Schaffer) is a possible fallback position, there is no reason to prefer to property dualism. It provides an equally complex and unattractive picture of nature. Third, assuming identity physicalism fails, we also should not much care about which of these options is right. In fact, it becomes difficult to understand the difference. The upshot is that, when it comes to the metaphysics of consciousness, the “big divide” is between identity physicalism (Lewis, Sider, Dorr) and all the rest. This is where the debate should focus.
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First archival date: 2020-05-31
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