Results for 'David Benatar'

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  1. How Human Life Matters in the Universe: A Reply to David Benatar.Brooke Alan Trisel - 2019 - Journal of Philosophy of Life 9 (1):1-15.
    In his book, The Human Predicament, David Benatar claims that our individual lives and human life, in general, do not make a difference beyond Earth and, therefore, are meaningless from the vast, cosmic perspective. In this paper, I will explain how what we do matters from the cosmic perspective. I will provide examples of how human beings have transcended our limits, thereby giving human life some meaning from the cosmic perspective. Also, I will argue that human life could (...)
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  2. Is Coming Into Existence Always a Harm? Qoheleth in Dialogue with David Benatar.Jesse Peterson - 2019 - Harvard Theological Review 112 (1):33–54.
    Contemporary philosopher David Benatar has advanced the self-evidently controversial claim that “coming into existence is always a harm.” Benatar’s argument turns on the basic asymmetry between pleasure and pain, an asymmetry he seeks to explain by the principle that those who never exist cannot be deprived. Benatar’s import is almost incredible: humans should cease to procreate immediately, thereby engendering the extinction of the species—a view known as “anti-natalism.” According to many of his readers, the ancient Hebrew (...)
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  3. Taking Humour (Ethics) Seriously, But Not Too Seriously.David Benatar - unknown
    Humour is worthy of serious ethical consideration. However, it is often taken far too seriously. In this paper, it is argued that while humour is sometimes unethical, it is wrong much less often than many people think. Non-contextual criticisms, which claim that certain kinds of humour are always wrong, are rejected. Contextual criticisms, which take issue with particular instances of humour rather than types of humour, are more promising. However, it is common to overstate the number of contexts in which (...)
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  4. How Best to Prevent Future Persons From Suffering: A Reply to Benatar.Brooke Alan Trisel - 2012 - South African Journal of Philosophy 31 (1):79-93.
    David Benatar claims that everyone was seriously harmed by coming into existence. To spare future persons from this suffering, we should cease having children, Benatar argues, with the result that humanity would gradually go extinct. Benatar’s claim of universal serious harm is baseless. Each year, an estimated 94% of children born throughout the world do not have a serious birth defect. Furthermore, studies show that most people do not experience chronic pain. Although nearly everyone experiences acute (...)
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  5.  96
    Cutting to the Core: Exploring the Ethics of Contested Surgeries.Michael Benatar, Leslie Cannold, Dena Davis, Merle Spriggs, Julian Savulescu, Heather Draper, Neil Evans, Richard Hull, Stephen Wilkinson, David Wasserman, Donna Dickenson, Guy Widdershoven, Françoise Baylis, Stephen Coleman, Rosemarie Tong, Hilde Lindemann, David Neil & Alex John London - 2006 - Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
    When the benefits of surgery do not outweigh the harms or where they do not clearly do so, surgical interventions become morally contested. Cutting to the Core examines a number of such surgeries, including infant male circumcision and cutting the genitals of female children, the separation of conjoined twins, surgical sex assignment of intersex children and the surgical re-assignment of transsexuals, limb and face transplantation, cosmetic surgery, and placebo surgery.
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  6. Contemporary Anti-Natalism, Featuring Benatar's Better Never to Have Been.Thaddeus Metz - 2012 - South African Journal of Philosophy 31 (1):1-9.
    A critical overview of the latest discussion of anti-natalism, with particular reference to David Benatar's work and three additional rationales for anti-natalism that differ from Benatar's.
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  7. Annihilation Isn't Bad For You.Travis Timmerman - manuscript
    In The Human Predicament, David Benatar develops and defends the annihilation view, according to which “death is bad in large part because it annihilates the being who dies.” In this paper, I make both a positive and negative argument against the annihilation view. My positive argument consists in showing that the annihilation view generates implausible consequences in cases where one can incur some other (intrinsic) bad to avoid the supposed (intrinsic) bad of annihilation. More precisely, Benatar’s view (...)
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  8. Better No Longer to Be.R. Mcgregor & E. Sullivan-Bissett - 2012 - South African Journal of Philosophy 31 (1):55-68.
    David Benatar argues that coming into existence is always a harm, and that – for all of us unfortunate enough to have come into existence – it would be better had we never come to be. We contend that if one accepts Benatar’s arguments for the asymmetry between the presence and absence of pleasure and pain, and the poor quality of life, one must also accept that suicide is preferable to continued existence, and that his view therefore (...)
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  9. What Is Antinatalism?: Definition, History, and Categories.Masahiro Morioka - 2021 - The Review of Life Studies 12:1-39.
    The concept of antinatalism is now becoming popular on the Internet. Many online newspaper articles deal with this topic, and numerous academic papers on antinatalism have been published over the past ten years in the fields of philosophy and ethics. The word “antinatalism” was first used in the current meaning in 2006, when the two books that justify the universal negation of procreation were published: one by David Benatar and the other by Théophile de Giraud. However, we can (...)
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  10. Promiscuity, Pedophilia, Rape, and the Significance of the Sexual.Fiona Woollard - 2019 - Public Affairs Quarterly 33 (2):137-158.
    This paper uses a dilemma presented by David Benatar to explore the challenges that ‘Sexual Liberals’ face in giving a satisfactory account of sexual ethics. A satisfactory Sexual Liberal account of sexual ethics must be able to fully explain the wrongness of sexual assault without implying that sexual activity should be restricted to those in love. The assumption that this is impossible may be due to mistakes in our thinking about sexual assault. However, even when such mistakes are (...)
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  11. What Is the Question to Which Anti-Natalism Is the Answer?Nicholas Smyth - 2020 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 23 (1):1-17.
    The ethics of biological procreation has received a great deal of attention in recent years. Yet, as I show in this paper, much of what has come to be called procreative ethics is conducted in a strangely abstract, impersonal mode, one which stands little chance of speaking to the practical perspectives of any prospective parent. In short, the field appears to be flirting with a strange sort of practical irrelevance, wherein its verdicts are answers to questions that no-one is asking. (...)
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  12. The Fulfillment of a Polanyian Vision of Heuristic Theology: David Brown’s Reframing of Revelation, Tradition, and Imagination.David James Stewart - 2014 - Tradition and Discovery 41 (3):4-19.
    According to Richard Gelwick, one of the fundamental implications of Polanyi’s epistemology is that all intellectual disciplines are inherently heuristic. This article draws out the implications of a heuristic vision of theology latent in Polanyi’s thought by placing contemporary theologian David Brown’s dynamic understanding of tradition, imagination, and revelation in the context of a Polanyian-inspired vision of reality. Consequently, such a theology will follow the example of science, reimagining its task as one of discovery rather than mere reflection on (...)
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  13.  97
    Common Sense and First Principles in Sidgwick's Methods*: DAVID O. BRINK.David O. Brink - 1994 - Social Philosophy and Policy 11 (1):179-201.
    What role, if any, should our moral intuitions play in moral epistemology? We make, or are prepared to make, moral judgments about a variety of actual and hypothetical situations. Some of these moral judgments are more informed, reflective, and stable than others ; some we make more confidently than others; and some, though not all, are judgments about which there is substantial consensus. What bearing do our moral judgments have on philosophical ethics and the search for first principles in ethics? (...)
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  14. Carnap's Second Aufbau and David Lewis's Aufbau.David J. Chalmers - manuscript
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  15. História natural da religião, de David Hume.David Hume & Jaimir Conte - 2005 - São Paulo, SP, Brasil: Editora da Unesp.
    Tradução para o português da obra "História natural da religião", de David Hume.Tradução, apresentação e notas: Jaimir Conte. Editora da UNESP: São Paulo, 1ª ed. 2005. ISBN: 8571396043.
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  16. Demonstratives: An Essay on the Semantics, Logic, Metaphysics and Epistemology of Demonstratives and Other Indexicals.David Kaplan - 1989 - In Joseph Almog, John Perry & Howard Wettstein (eds.), Themes From Kaplan. Oxford University Press. pp. 481-563.
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  17. Constructing the World.David Chalmers - 2012 - Oxford University Press.
    Inspired by Rudolf Carnap's Der Logische Aufbau Der Welt, David J. Chalmers argues that the world can be constructed from a few basic elements. He develops a scrutability thesis saying that all truths about the world can be derived from basic truths and ideal reasoning. This thesis leads to many philosophical consequences: a broadly Fregean approach to meaning, an internalist approach to the contents of thought, and a reply to W. V. Quine's arguments against the analytic and the a (...)
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  18. What Do Philosophers Believe?David Bourget & David J. Chalmers - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 170 (3):465-500.
    What are the philosophical views of contemporary professional philosophers? We surveyed many professional philosophers in order to help determine their views on 30 central philosophical issues. This article documents the results. It also reveals correlations among philosophical views and between these views and factors such as age, gender, and nationality. A factor analysis suggests that an individual's views on these issues factor into a few underlying components that predict much of the variation in those views. The results of a metasurvey (...)
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  19. Consciousness and the Collapse of the Wave Function.David J. Chalmers & Kelvin J. McQueen - forthcoming - In Shan Gao (ed.), Consciousness and Quantum Mechanics. Oxford University Press.
    Does consciousness collapse the quantum wave function? This idea was taken seriously by John von Neumann and Eugene Wigner but is now widely dismissed. We develop the idea by combining a mathematical theory of consciousness (integrated information theory) with an account of quantum collapse dynamics (continuous spontaneous localization). Simple versions of the theory are falsified by the quantum Zeno effect, but more complex versions remain compatible with empirical evidence. In principle, versions of the theory can be tested by experiments with (...)
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  20. Epistemology of Disagreement: The Good News.David Christensen - 2007 - Philosophical Review 116 (2):187-217.
    How should one react when one has a belief, but knows that other people—who have roughly the same evidence as one has, and seem roughly as likely to react to it correctly—disagree? This paper argues that the disagreement of other competent inquirers often requires one to be much less confident in one’s opinions than one would otherwise be.
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  21. The Meta-Problem of Consciousness.David Chalmers - 2018 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 25 (9-10):6-61.
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  22. Virtue and Meaning: A Neo-Aristotelian Perspective.David McPherson - 2020 - Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
    The revival of Aristotelian virtue ethics can be seen as a response to the modern problem of disenchantment, that is, the perceived loss of meaning in modernity. However, in Virtue and Meaning, David McPherson contends that the dominant approach still embraces an overly disenchanted view. In a wide-ranging discussion, McPherson argues for a more fully re-enchanted perspective that gives better recognition to the meanings by which we live and after which we seek, and to the fact that human beings (...)
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  23. Motivational Limitations on the Demands of Justice.David Wiens - 2016 - European Journal of Political Theory 15 (3):333-352.
    Do motivational limitations due to human nature constrain the demands of justice? Among those who say no, David Estlund offers perhaps the most compelling argument. Taking Estlund’s analysis of “ability” as a starting point, I show that motivational deficiencies can constrain the demands of justice under at least one common circumstance — that the motivationally-deficient agent makes a good faith effort to overcome her deficiency. In fact, my argument implies something stronger; namely, that the demands of justice are constrained (...)
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  24. Higher Order Evidence.David Christensen - 2010 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81 (1):185-215.
    Sometimes we get evidence of our own epistemic malfunction. This can come from finding out we’re fatigued, or have been drugged, or that other competent and well-informed thinkers disagree with our beliefs. This sort of evidence seems to seems to behave differently from ordinary evidence about the world. In particular, getting such evidence can put agents in a position where the most rational response involves violating some epistemic ideal.
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  25. The Paradoxes of Time Travel.David K. Lewis - 1976 - American Philosophical Quarterly 13 (2):145-152.
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  26. Prescribing Institutions Without Ideal Theory.David Wiens - 2012 - Journal of Political Philosophy 20 (1):45-70.
    It is conventional wisdom among political philosophers that ideal principles of justice must guide our attempts to design institutions to avert actual injustice. Call this the ideal guidance approach. I argue that this view is misguided— ideal principles of justice are not appropriate "guiding principles" that actual institutions must aim to realize, even if only approximately. Fortunately, the conventional wisdom is also avoidable. In this paper, I develop an alternative approach to institutional design, which I call institutional failure analysis. The (...)
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  27. Thinking About Spacetime.David Yates - 2021 - In Christian Wüthrich, Baptiste Le Bihan & Nick Huggett (eds.), Philosophy Beyond Spacetime. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Several different quantum gravity research programmes suggest, for various reasons, that spacetime is not part of the fundamental ontology of physics. This gives rise to the problem of empirical coherence: if fundamental physical entities do not occupy spacetime or instantiate spatiotemporal properties, how can fundamental theories concerning those entities be justified by observation of spatiotemporally located things like meters, pointers and dials? I frame the problem of empirical coherence in terms of entailment: how could a non-spatiotemporal fundamental theory entail spatiotemporal (...)
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  28. Utopophobia.David Estlund - 2014 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 42 (2):113-134.
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  29. Reduction of Mind.David K. Lewis - 1994 - In Samuel Guttenplan (ed.), Companion to the Philosophy of Mind. Blackwell. pp. 412-431.
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  30. Human Nature and the Limits (If Any) of Political Philosophy.David Estlund - 2011 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 39 (3):207-237.
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  31. Idealism and the Mind-Body Problem.David Chalmers - 2019 - In William Seager (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Panpsychism. New York: Routledge. pp. 353-373.
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  32. Disagreement as Evidence: The Epistemology of Controversy.David Christensen - 2009 - Philosophy Compass 4 (5):756-767.
    How much should your confidence in your beliefs be shaken when you learn that others – perhaps 'epistemic peers' who seem as well-qualified as you are – hold beliefs contrary to yours? This article describes motivations that push different philosophers towards opposite answers to this question. It identifies a key theoretical principle that divides current writers on the epistemology of disagreement. It then examines arguments bearing on that principle, and on the wider issue. It ends by describing some outstanding questions (...)
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  33. Demystifying Emergence.David Yates - 2016 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 3:809-841.
    Are the special sciences autonomous from physics? Those who say they are need to explain how dependent special science properties could feature in irreducible causal explanations, but that’s no easy task. The demands of a broadly physicalist worldview require that such properties are not only dependent on the physical, but also physically realized. Realized properties are derivative, so it’s natural to suppose that they have derivative causal powers. Correspondingly, philosophical orthodoxy has it that if we want special science properties to (...)
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  34. Inferentialism, Australian Style.David J. Chalmers - forthcoming - Proceedings and Addresses of the American Philosophical Association.
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  35. What Makes Pains Unpleasant?David Bain - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 166 (1):69-89.
    The unpleasantness of pain motivates action. Hence many philosophers have doubted that it can be accounted for purely in terms of pain’s possession of indicative representational content. Instead, they have explained it in terms of subjects’ inclinations to stop their pains, or in terms of pain’s imperative content. I claim that such “noncognitivist” accounts fail to accommodate unpleasant pain’s reason-giving force. What is needed, I argue, is a view on which pains are unpleasant, motivate, and provide reasons in virtue of (...)
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  36. Inverse Functionalism and the Individuation of Powers.David Yates - 2018 - Synthese 195 (10):4525-4550.
    In the pure powers ontology (PPO), basic physical properties have wholly dispositional essences. PPO has clear advantages over categoricalist ontologies, which suffer from familiar epistemological and metaphysical problems. However, opponents argue that because it contains no qualitative properties, PPO lacks the resources to individuate powers, and generates a regress. The challenge for those who take such arguments seriously is to introduce qualitative properties without reintroducing the problems that PPO was meant to solve. In this paper, I distinguish the core claim (...)
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  37. A Guided Tour Of Conceptual Engineering and Conceptual Ethics.David Plunkett & Herman Cappelen - 2020 - In Herman Cappelen, David Plunkett & Alexis Burgess (eds.), Conceptual Engineering and Conceptual Ethics. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 1-26.
    In this Introduction, we aim to introduce the reader to the basic topic of this book. As part of this, we explain why we are using two different expressions (‘conceptual engineering’ and ‘conceptual ethics’) to describe the topics in the book. We then turn to some of the central foundational issues that arise for conceptual engineering and conceptual ethics, and finally we outline various views one might have about their role in philosophy and inquiry more generally.
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  38. Statistical Evidence, Sensitivity, and the Legal Value of Knowledge.David Enoch, Levi Spectre & Talia Fisher - 2012 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 40 (3):197-224.
    The law views with suspicion statistical evidence, even evidence that is probabilistically on a par with direct, individual evidence that the law is in no way suspicious of. But it has proved remarkably hard to either justify this suspicion, or to debunk it. In this paper, we connect the discussion of statistical evidence to broader epistemological discussions of similar phenomena. We highlight Sensitivity – the requirement that a belief be counterfactually sensitive to the truth in a specific way – as (...)
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  39. Disagreement, Question-Begging and Epistemic Self-Criticism.David Christensen - 2011 - Philosophers' Imprint 11.
    Responding rationally to the information that others disagree with one’s beliefs requires assessing the epistemic credentials of the opposing beliefs. Conciliatory accounts of disagreement flow in part from holding that these assessments must be independent from one’s own initial reasoning on the disputed matter. I argue that this claim, properly understood, does not have the untoward consequences some have worried about. Moreover, some of the difficulties it does engender must be faced by many less conciliatory accounts of disagreement.
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  40.  67
    The Rhetoric and Reality of Anthropomorphism in Artificial Intelligence.David S. Watson - 2019 - Minds and Machines 29 (3):417-440.
    Artificial intelligence has historically been conceptualized in anthropomorphic terms. Some algorithms deploy biomimetic designs in a deliberate attempt to effect a sort of digital isomorphism of the human brain. Others leverage more general learning strategies that happen to coincide with popular theories of cognitive science and social epistemology. In this paper, I challenge the anthropomorphic credentials of the neural network algorithm, whose similarities to human cognition I argue are vastly overstated and narrowly construed. I submit that three alternative supervised learning (...)
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  41. The Phenomenology of Cognition: Or What Is It Like to Think That P?David Pitt - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 69 (1):1-36.
    A number of philosophers endorse, without argument, the view that there’s something it’s like consciously to think that p, which is distinct from what it’s like consciously to think that q. This thesis, if true, would have important consequences for philosophy of mind and cognitive science. In this paper I offer an argument for it, and attempt to induce examples of it in the reader. The argument claims it would be impossible introspectively to distinguish conscious thoughts with respect to their (...)
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  42. On Distinguishing Epistemic From Pragmatic Action.David Kirsh & Paul Maglio - 1994 - Cognitive Science 18 (4):513-49.
    We present data and argument to show that in Tetris - a real-time interactive video game - certain cognitive and perceptual problems are more quickly, easily, and reliably solved by performing actions in the world rather than by performing computational actions in the head alone. We have found that some translations and rotations are best understood as using the world to improve cognition. These actions are not used to implement a plan, or to implement a reaction; they are used to (...)
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  43. Why Take Painkillers?David Bain - 2019 - Noûs 53 (2):462-490.
    Accounts of the nature of unpleasant pain have proliferated over the past decade, but there has been little systematic investigation of which of them can accommodate its badness. This paper is such a study. In its sights are two targets: those who deny the non-instrumental disvalue of pain's unpleasantness; and those who allow it but deny that it can be accommodated by the view—advanced by me and others—that unpleasant pains are interoceptive experiences with evaluative content. Against the former, I argue (...)
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  44. Why Can’T I Change Bruckner’s Eighth Symphony?David Friedell - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (3):805-824.
    Musical works change. Bruckner revised his Eighth Symphony. Ella Fitzgerald and many other artists have made it acceptable to sing the jazz standard “All the Things You Are” without its original verse. If we accept that musical works genuinely change in these ways, a puzzle arises: why can’t I change Bruckner’s Eighth Symphony? More generally, why are some individuals in a privileged position when it comes to changing musical works and other artifacts, such as novels, films, and games? I give (...)
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  45. Know-How as Competence. A Rylean Responsibilist Account.David Lowenstein - 2017 - Frankfurt am Main: Vittorio Klostermann.
    What does it mean to know how to do something? This book develops a comprehensive account of know-how, a crucial epistemic goal for all who care about getting things right, not only with respect to the facts, but also with respect to practice. It proposes a novel interpretation of the seminal work of Gilbert Ryle, according to which know-how is a competence, a complex ability to do well in an activity in virtue of guidance by an understanding of what it (...)
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  46. Supererogation: Its Status in Ethical Theory.David Heyd - 1982 - Cambridge University Press.
    David Heyd's study will stimulate philosophers to recognise the importance of the rather neglected topic of the distinctiveness of supererogation and the ...
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  47. Inquiry and the Epistemic.David Thorstad - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (9):2913-2928.
    The zetetic turn in epistemology raises three questions about epistemic and zetetic norms. First, there is the relationship question: what is the relationship between epistemic and zetetic norms? Are some epistemic norms zetetic norms, or are epistemic and zetetic norms distinct? Second, there is the tension question: are traditional epistemic norms in tension with plausible zetetic norms? Third, there is the reaction question: how should theorists react to a tension between epistemic and zetetic norms? Drawing on an analogy to practical (...)
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  48. The Epistemology of Disagreement: New Essays.David Christensen & Jennifer Lackey (eds.) - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
    This is a collective study of the epistemic significance of disagreement: twelve contributors explore rival responses to the problems that it raises for philosophy. They develop our understanding of epistemic phenomena that are central to any thoughtful engagement with others' beliefs.
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  49. Neural Synchrony and the Causal Efficacy of Consciousness.David Yates - 2020 - Topoi 39 (5):1057-1072.
    The purpose of this paper is to address a well-known dilemma for physicalism. If mental properties are type identical to physical properties, then their causal efficacy is secure, but at the cost of ruling out mentality in creatures very different to ourselves. On the other hand, if mental properties are multiply realizable, then all kinds of creatures can instantiate them, but then they seem to be causally redundant. The causal exclusion problem depends on the widely held principle that realized properties (...)
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  50. Libertarian Freedom and the Avoidability of Decisions.David Widerker - 1995 - Faith and Philosophy 12 (1):113-118.
    Recently, John Fischer has applied Frankfurt’s well-known counter-example to the principle of alternate possibilities to refute the traditional libertarian position which holds that a necessary condition for an agent’s decision to be free in the sense of freedom required for moral responsibility is that the decision not be causally determined, and that the agent could have avoided making it. Fischer’s argument has consequently led various philosophers to develop libertarian accounts of freedom which try to dispense with the avoidability constraint on (...)
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