Monday, July 14, 2014

Chapter 2 (review for test this friday) MWF Summer B

Chapter 2 (Philosophy of Mind)
2.1 Cartesian Dualism: Ms <---> Nonphysical substance that interacts with the body. Body and mind and different substances. Conclusion: Descartes deductive arguments are valid but unsound. Empirically speaking there is no immaterial substance. Thus, Cartesian theory as it stands is not viable.

Logical Behaviorism , behavioral dispositions: MS <---> BhS, where BhS are behavioral  dispositions. C/E "Perfect pretender", "Super Spartans." Qualitative content (qualia = the unique, private feeling of our mental states). Conclusion: Logical Behaviorism is a materialist theory because it doesn't postulate the existence of non-material entities. It's a reductive theory because it holds that mental states can be translated into behavioral dispositions. But it doesn't account for the quality of mental states and the translation between behavior and mental states that it envisions cannot be performed. 

Identity Theory: MS <---> BrS, where BrS is the passing of electro/chemical signals from cell to cell. C/E "Nagel's Bat" and "Lewis Pained Martian." (You must be able to grasp and understand these counterexamples and derive conclusions). Conclusion: Identity theory is superior to behaviorism because it can explain mental causation. But there is reason to doubt that mental states and identical to brain states because brain states are knowable by empirical investigation while mental states are not. Moreover, having a brain doesn't seem to be a necessary condition for having a mind (since an alien or a computer could have a mind). 

Conscious experience: Nagel's bat experiment shows that mental states have this characteristic that can be felt from the "inside" from a first person POV. But physical properties can all be known from the "outside" --from a third person POV. Since complete knowledge of physical properties cannot yield knowledge of mental properties, the mind cannot be identified with the brain.

Functionalism: MS <---> FS. According to functionalism, to have a mind is to have the ability to perform certain functions. C/E "Lewis Pained Madman and Putnam's inverted spectrum (imagine a color-blind driver driving like we do, only he inverts green with red). "Turing Test for Intelligence: C/E Searle's Chinese Room. Intentionality (the ability of mental states to be "of" or "about" anything).

2.4  Eliminative Materialism: Rorty's demons. Eliminative materialism provides an explanation for the failure of reductive theories of mind: mental states cannot be reduced to physical states because there's nothing to reduce --mental states don't exist.

2.5 Property Dualism:

... is the view that non-physical, mental properties (such as beliefs, desires and emotions) inhere in some physical substances (namely brains).

Primitive Property (intentionality as a primitive property).
Emergent Property and Downward Causation.

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