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  1. Practical Ethics.Peter Singer - 1979 - New York: Cambridge University Press. Edited by Susan J. Armstrong & Richard George Botzler.
    For thirty years, Peter Singer's Practical Ethics has been the classic introduction to applied ethics. For this third edition, the author has revised and updated all the chapters and added a new chapter addressing climate change, one of the most important ethical challenges of our generation. Some of the questions discussed in this book concern our daily lives. Is it ethical to buy luxuries when others do not have enough to eat? Should we buy meat from intensively reared animals? Am (...)
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  • Consciousness and the brain: deciphering how the brain codes our thoughts.Stanislas Dehaene - 2014 - New York, New York: Viking Press.
    A breathtaking look at the new science that can track consciousness deep in the brain How does our brain generate a conscious thought? And why does so much of our knowledge remain unconscious? Thanks to clever psychological and brain-imaging experiments, scientists are closer to cracking this mystery than ever before. In this lively book, Stanislas Dehaene describes the pioneering work his lab and the labs of other cognitive neuroscientists worldwide have accomplished in defining, testing, and explaining the brain events behind (...)
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  • A Cognitive Theory of Consciousness.Bernard J. Baars - 1988 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
    Conscious experience is one of the most difficult and thorny problems in psychological science. Its study has been neglected for many years, either because it was thought to be too difficult, or because the relevant evidence was thought to be poor. Bernard Baars suggests a way to specify empirical constraints on a theory of consciousness by contrasting well-established conscious phenomena - such as stimulus representations known to be attended, perceptual, and informative - with closely comparable unconscious ones - such as (...)
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  • Vagueness and Indeterminacy in Metaethics.Tom Dougherty - 2017 - In Tristram Colin McPherson & David Plunkett (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Metaethics. New York: Routledge. pp. 185-193.
    This chapter discusses vagueness in ethics.
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  • What is it like to be a bat?Thomas Nagel - 1974 - Philosophical Review 83 (October):435-50.
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  • Animal Sentience.Heather Browning & Jonathan Birch - 2022 - Philosophy Compass 17 (5):e12822.
    ‘Sentience’ sometimes refers to the capacity for any type of subjective experience, and sometimes to the capacity to have subjective experiences with a positive or negative valence, such as pain or pleasure. We review recent controversies regarding sentience in fish and invertebrates and consider the deep methodological challenge posed by these cases. We then present two ways of responding to the challenge. In a policy-making context, precautionary thinking can help us treat animals appropriately despite continuing uncertainty about their sentience. In (...)
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  • Vagueness and the Evolution of Consciousness: Through the Looking Glass.Michael Tye - 2021 - Oxford University Press.
    The two dominant theories of consciousness argue it appeared in living beings either suddenly, or gradually. Both theories face problems. The solution is the realization that a foundational consciousness was always here, yet varying conscious states were not, and appeared gradually. Michael Tye explores this idea and the key questions it raises.
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  • Reality+: Virtual Worlds and the Problems of Philosophy.David John Chalmers - 2022 - New York: W. W. Norton.
    A leading philosopher takes a mind-bending journey through virtual worlds, illuminating the nature of reality and our place within it. Virtual reality is genuine reality; that's the central thesis of Reality+. In a highly original work of "technophilosophy," David J. Chalmers gives a compelling analysis of our technological future. He argues that virtual worlds are not second-class worlds, and that we can live a meaningful life in virtual reality. We may even be in a virtual world already. Along the way, (...)
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  • Human and Animal Minds: The Consciousness Questions Laid to Rest.Peter Carruthers - 2019 - New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
    Claims about consciousness in animals are often made in support of their moral standing. Peter Carruthers argues that there is no fact of the matter about animal consciousness and it is of no scientific or ethical significance. Sympathy for an animal can be grounded in its mental states, but should not rely on assumptions about its consciousness.
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  • How to Count Animals, More or Less.Shelly Kagan - 2019 - Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Shelly Kagan argues for a hierarchical position in animal ethics where people count more than animals do, and some animals count more than others. In arguing for his account of morality, Kagan sets out what needs to be done to establish our obligations toward animals and to fulfil our duties to them.
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  • Which Animals Matter?Henry Shevlin - 2020 - Philosophical Topics 48 (1):177-200.
    Most people will grant that we bear special moral obligations toward at least some nonhuman animals that we do not bear toward inanimate objects like stones, mountains, or works of art. These moral obligations are plausibly grounded in the fact that many if not all nonhuman animals share important psychological states and capacities with us, such as consciousness, suffering, and goal-directed behavior. But which of these states and capacities are really critical for a creature’s possessing moral status, and how can (...)
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  • Moral Vagueness Is Ontic Vagueness.Miriam Schoenfield - 2016 - Ethics 126 (2):257-282.
    The aim of this essay is to argue that, if a robust form of moral realism is true, then moral vagueness is ontic vagueness. The argument is by elimination: I show that neither semantic nor epistemic approaches to moral vagueness are satisfactory.
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  • Phenomenology-first versus third-person approaches in the science of consciousness: the case of the integrated information theory and the unfolding argument.Niccolò Negro - 2020 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 19 (5):979-996.
    Assessing the scientific status of theories of consciousness is often a difficult task. In this paper, I explore the dialectic between the Integrated Information Theory, e1003588, 2014; Tononi et al. Nat Rev Neurosci, 17, 450-61, 2016) and a recently proposed criticism of that theory: the ‘unfolding argument’. I show that the phenomenology-first approach in consciousness research can lead to valid scientific theories of consciousness. I do this by highlighting the two reasons why the unfolding argument fails: first, phenomenology-first theories are (...)
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  • An Argument for the Identity Theory.David K. Lewis - 1966 - Journal of Philosophy 63 (1):17-25.
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  • Is consciousness intrinsically valuable?Andrew Y. Lee - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (1):1–17.
    Is consciousness intrinsically valuable? Some theorists favor the positive view, according to which consciousness itself accrues intrinsic value, independent of the particular kind of experience instantiated. In contrast, I favor the neutral view, according to which consciousness is neither intrinsically valuable nor disvaluable. The primary purpose of this paper is to clarify what is at stake when we ask whether consciousness is intrinsically valuable, to carve out the theoretical space, and to evaluate the question rigorously. Along the way, I also (...)
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  • The Value of Consciousness.Uriah Kriegel - 2019 - Analysis 79 (3):503-520.
    Recent work within such disparate research areas as the epistemology of perception, theories of well-being, animal and medical ethics, the philosophy of consciousness, and theories of understanding in philosophy of science and epistemology has featured disconnected discussions of what is arguably a single underlying question: What is the value of consciousness? The purpose of this paper is to review some of this work and place it within a unified theoretical framework that makes contributions (and contributors) from these disparate areas more (...)
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  • The Normative Challenge for Illusionist Views of Consciousness.Francois Kammerer - 2019 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 6.
    Illusionists about phenomenal consciousness claim that phenomenal consciousness does not exist but merely seems to exist. At the same time, it is quite intuitive for there to be some kind of link between phenomenality and value. For example, some situations seem good or bad in virtue of the conscious experiences they feature. Illusionist views of phenomenal consciousness then face what I call the normative challenge. They have to say where they stand regarding the idea that there is a link between (...)
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  • Me and mine.Peter M. Jaworski & David Shoemaker - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (1):1-22.
    In this paper we articulate and diagnose a previously unrecognized problem for theories of entitlement, what we call the Claims Conundrum. It applies to all entitlements that are originally generated by some claim-generating action, such as laboring, promising, or contract-signing. The Conundrum is spurred by the very plausible thought that a later claim to the object to which one is entitled is a function of whether that original claim-generating action is attributable to one. This is further assumed to depend on (...)
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  • Is Consciousness Vague?Geoffrey Hall - 2023 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 101 (3):670-684.
    1. Is consciousness vague? This paper will argue that it is. But, first, we need to get clear on the meaning of the question.I will take vagueness to consist in the possibility of borderline cases....
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  • Frontiers of justice: disability, nationality, species membership.Martha C. Nussbaum (ed.) - 2006 - Belknap Press.
    Theories of social justice are necessarily abstract, reaching beyond the particular and the immediate to the general and the timeless. Yet such theories, addressing the world and its problems, must respond to the real and changing dilemmas of the day. A brilliant work of practical philosophy, Frontiers of Justice is dedicated to this proposition. Taking up three urgent problems of social justice neglected by current theories and thus harder to tackle in practical terms and everyday life, Martha Nussbaum seeks a (...)
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  • Justice for hedgehogs.Ronald Dworkin - 2011 - Cambridge, Mass.: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
    Baedeker -- Independence. Truth in morals -- External skepticism -- Morals and causes -- Internal skepticism -- Interpretation. Moral responsibility -- Interpretation in general -- Conceptual interpretation -- Ethics. Dignity -- Free will and responsibility -- Morality. From dignity to morality -- Aid -- Harm -- Obligations -- Politics. Political rights and concepts -- Equality -- Liberty -- Democracy -- Law -- Epilogue. Dignity indivisible.
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  • 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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  • 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 Explained.Daniel C. Dennett - 1993 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 53 (4):905-910.
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  • Welcoming Robots into the Moral Circle: A Defence of Ethical Behaviourism.John Danaher - 2020 - Science and Engineering Ethics 26 (4):2023-2049.
    Can robots have significant moral status? This is an emerging topic of debate among roboticists and ethicists. This paper makes three contributions to this debate. First, it presents a theory – ‘ethical behaviourism’ – which holds that robots can have significant moral status if they are roughly performatively equivalent to other entities that have significant moral status. This theory is then defended from seven objections. Second, taking this theoretical position onboard, it is argued that the performative threshold that robots need (...)
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  • The metaphysical implications of the moral significance of consciousness.Brian Cutter - 2017 - Philosophical Perspectives 31 (1):103-130.
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  • Moral Vagueness: A Dilemma for Non-Naturalism.Cristian Constantinescu - 2014 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics 9.
    This chapter explores the implications of moral vagueness for non-naturalist metaethical theories like those recently championed by Shafer-Landau, Parfit, and others. It characterizes non-naturalism in terms of its commitment to seven theses: Cognitivism, Correspondence, Atomism, Objectivism, Supervenience, Non-reductivism, and Rationalism. It starts by offering a number of reasons for thinking that moral predicates are vague in the same way in which “red,” “tall,” and “heap” are said to be. It then argues that the moral non-naturalist seeking to countenance moral vagueness (...)
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  • Functional kinds: a skeptical look.Cameron Buckner - 2015 - Synthese 192 (12):3915-3942.
    The functionalist approach to kinds has suffered recently due to its association with law-based approaches to induction and explanation. Philosophers of science increasingly view nomological approaches as inappropriate for the special sciences like psychology and biology, which has led to a surge of interest in approaches to natural kinds that are more obviously compatible with mechanistic and model-based methods, especially homeostatic property cluster theory. But can the functionalist approach to kinds be weaned off its dependency on laws? Dan Weiskopf has (...)
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  • The sentience shift in animal research.Heather Browning & Walter Veit - 2022 - The New Bioethics 28 (4):299-314.
    One of the primary concerns in animal research is ensuring the welfare of laboratory animals. Modern views on animal welfare emphasize the role of animal sentience, i.e. the capacity to experience subjective states such as pleasure or suffering, as a central component of welfare. The increasing official recognition of animal sentience has had large effects on laboratory animal research. The Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness (Low et al., University of Cambridge, 2012) marked an official scientific recognition of the presence of sentience (...)
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  • Global Workspace Theory and Animal Consciousness.Jonathan Birch - 2020 - Philosophical Topics 48 (1):21-37.
    Peter Carruthers has recently argued for a surprising conditional: if a global workspace theory of phenomenal consciousness is both correct and fully reductive, then there are no substantive facts to discover about phenomenal consciousness in nonhuman animals. I present two problems for this conditional. First, it rests on an odd double-standard about the ordinary concept of phenomenal consciousness: its intuitive non-gradability is taken to be unchallengeable by future scientific developments, whereas its intuitive determinacy is predicted to fall by the wayside. (...)
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  • Materialism and the Moral Status of Animals.Jonathan Birch - 2022 - Philosophical Quarterly 72 (4):795-815.
    Consciousness has an important role in ethics: when a being consciously experiences the frustration or satisfaction of its interests, those interests deserve higher moral priority than those of a behaviourally similar but non-conscious being. I consider the relationship between this ethical role and an a posteriori (or “type-B”) materialist solution to the mind-body problem. It is hard to avoid the conclusion that, if type-B materialism is correct, then the reference of the concept of phenomenal consciousness is radically indeterminate between a (...)
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  • Vagueness and the Metaphysics of Consciousness.Michael V. Antony - 2006 - Philosophical Studies 128 (3):515-538.
    An argument is offered for this conditional: If our current concept conscious state is sharp rather than vague, and also correct , then common versions of familiar metaphysical theories of consciousness are false--?namely versions of the identity theory, functionalism, and dualism that appeal to complex physical or functional properties in identification, realization, or correlation. Reasons are also given for taking seriously the claim that our current concept conscious state is sharp. The paper ends by surveying the theoretical options left open (...)
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  • Consciousness Revisited: Materialism Without Phenomenal Concepts.Michael Tye - 2008 - MIT Press.
    We are material beings in a material world, but we are also beings who have experiences and feelings. How can these subjective states be just a matter of matter? To defend materialism, philosophical materialists have formulated what is sometimes called "the phenomenal-concept strategy," which holds that we possess a range of special concepts for classifying the subjective aspects of our experiences. In Consciousness Revisited, the philosopher Michael Tye, until now a proponent of the the phenomenal-concept strategy, argues that the strategy (...)
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  • Thinking About Consciousness.David Papineau - 2002 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press UK.
    The relation between subjective consciousness and the physical brain is widely regarded as the last mystery facing science. David Papineau argues that there is no real puzzle here. Consciousness seems mysterious, not because of any hidden essence, but only because we think about it in a special way. Papineau exposes the confusion, and dispels the mystery: we see consciousness in its place in the material world, and we are on the way to a proper understanding of the mind.
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  • Philosophy of Language: A Contemporary Introduction.William G. Lycan - 1999 - New York: Routledge.
    _Philosophy of Language_ introduces the student to the main issues and theories in twentieth-century philosophy of language. Topics are structured in three parts in the book. Part I, Reference and Referring Expressions, includes topics such as Russell's Theory of Desciptions, Donnellan's distinction, problems of anaphora, the description theory of proper names, Searle's cluster theory, and the causal-historical theory. Part II, Theories of Meaning, surveys the competing theories of linguistic meaning and compares their various advantages and liabilities. Part III, Pragmatics and (...)
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  • The meaning of 'meaning'.Hilary Putnam - 1975 - Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science 7:131-193.
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  • The Grounds of Moral Status.Julie Tannenbaum & Agnieszka Jaworska - 2018 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy:0-0.
    This article discusses what is involved in having full moral status, as opposed to a lesser degree of moral status and surveys different views of the grounds of moral status as well as the arguments for attributing a particular degree of moral status on the basis of those grounds.
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  • Consciousness and its place in nature.David Chalmers - 2014 - In Josh Weisberg (ed.), Consciousness. Polity.
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  • The Meta-Problem of Consciousness.David Chalmers - 2018 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 25 (9-10):6-61.
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  • Ethics Without Sentience: Facing Up to the Probable Insignificance of Phenomenal Consciousness.François Kammerer - 2022 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 29 (3-4):180-204.
    Phenomenal consciousness appears to be particularly normatively significant. For this reason, sentience-based conceptions of ethics are widespread. In the field of animal ethics, knowing which animals are sentient appears to be essential to decide the moral status of these animals. I argue that, given that materialism is true of the mind, phenomenal consciousness is probably not particularly normatively significant. We should face up to this probable insignificance of phenomenal consciousness and move towards an ethic without sentience.
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  • An Argument for the Identity Theory.David Lewis - 2003 - In John Heil (ed.), Philosophy of Mind: A Guide and Anthology. Oxford University Press.
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  • Review of the Evidence of Sentience in Cephalopod Molluscs and Decapod Crustaceans.Jonathan Birch, Charlotte Burn, Alexandra Schnell, Heather Browning & Andrew Crump - manuscript
    Sentience is the capacity to have feelings, such as feelings of pain, pleasure, hunger, thirst, warmth, joy, comfort and excitement. It is not simply the capacity to feel pain, but feelings of pain, distress or harm, broadly understood, have a special significance for animal welfare law. Drawing on over 300 scientific studies, we evaluate the evidence of sentience in two groups of invertebrate animals: the cephalopod molluscs or, for short, cephalopods (including octopods, squid and cuttlefish) and the decapod crustaceans or, (...)
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  • Chalmers' Meta-Problem.D. Rosenthal - 2019 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 26 (9-10):194-204.
    There is strong reason to doubt that the intuitions Chalmers' meta-problem focuses on are widespread or independent of proto-theoretical prompting. So it's unlikely that they result from factors connected to the nature of consciousness. In any case, it's only the accuracy of the problem intuitions that matters for evaluating theories of consciousness or revealing the nature of consciousness, not an explanation of how they arise. Unless we determine that they're accurate about consciousness, we mustn't assume that realism about consciousness incorporates (...)
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  • The Value of Consciousness.Neil Levy - 2014 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 21 (1-2):127-138.
    Consciousness, or its lack, is often invoked in debates in applied and normative ethics. Conscious beings are typically held to be significantly more morally valuable than non-consious, so that establishing whether a being is conscious becomes of critical importance. In this paper, I argue that the supposition that phenomenal consciousness explains the value of our experiences or our lives, and the moral value of beings who are conscious, is less well-grounded than is commonly thought. A great deal of what matters (...)
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