Stephen Barker Nottingham University
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Affiliations
  • Faculty, Nottingham University
  • PhD, University of Melbourne, 1996.

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My philosophical views


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My philosophical views

The answers shown here are not necessarily the same provided as part of the 2009 PhilPapers Survey. These answers can be updated at any time.

See also:

QuestionAnswerComments
A priori knowledge: yes or no?Lean toward: yes
Abstract objects: Platonism or nominalism?Reject bothI accept the existence of abstract objects, but do not accept Platonism, since that is a metaphysical conception.
Aesthetic value: objective or subjective?Lean toward: objectiveI think aesthetic value claims can be objectively true, but there are some claims for which there might be faultless disagreement, and objective truth or falsity goes by the wayside
Analytic-synthetic distinction: yes or no?Accept: yesNevertheless, the distinction allows for indeterminate cases.
Epistemic justification: internalism or externalism?There is no fact of the matterNo fact of the matter in the sense that my view is that actually, there is no nature about justification to be uncovered. I know this sounds a bit vague.
External world: idealism, skepticism, or non-skeptical realism?Lean toward: non-skeptical realism
Free will: compatibilism, libertarianism, or no free will?Lean toward: no free will
God: theism or atheism?Lean toward: atheism
Knowledge: empiricism or rationalism?There is no fact of the matter
Knowledge claims: contextualism, relativism, or invariantism?Lean toward: invariantismI think I want to embrace an expressivist treatment of knowledge claims, and that, I think, excludes relativism and contextualism.
Laws of nature: Humean or non-Humean?Reject bothGlobal expressivism again: it infects my views across the board. I defend expressivism about talk of physical necessity.
Logic: classical or non-classical?Accept: non-classical
Mental content: internalism or externalism?Reject bothI think there is no theory about what mental content is, or theory of constitution of the mental.
Meta-ethics: moral realism or moral anti-realism?Accept: moral realismYet, I reject any metaphysics of value: realist but anti-metaphysical. I am an expressivist.
Metaphilosophy: naturalism or non-naturalism?Accept: non-naturalism
Mind: physicalism or non-physicalism?Lean toward: non-physicalismBut not as a metaphysical thesis. I suppose have deeply anti-metaphysical inclinations.
Moral judgment: cognitivism or non-cognitivism?Accept: cognitivismBut I am an expressivist. Think that one can be an cognitivist and an expressivist. That is not a contradiction.
Moral motivation: internalism or externalism?Lean toward: externalismDefend externalist expressivism. I know that sounds implausible, but I think it can be done.
Newcomb's problem: one box or two boxes?Lean toward: two boxesRationality is being punished
Normative ethics: deontology, consequentialism, or virtue ethics?Accept more than one
Perceptual experience: disjunctivism, qualia theory, representationalism, or sense-datum theory?Reject allI think I currently like a kind of neutral monism--the qualia are not inherently subjective or objective.
Personal identity: biological view, psychological view, or further-fact view?Reject allIrreducible, but not metaphysically primitive. Why? Consequence of global expressivism.
Politics: communitarianism, egalitarianism, or libertarianism?Lean toward: egalitarianism
Proper names: Fregean or Millian?Reject bothDon't believe meaning is a property name is constituted by referents or senses. I want to be an expressivist about meaning claims and embrace a speech-act theoretic theory of language activity.
Science: scientific realism or scientific anti-realism?Accept: scientific realism
Teletransporter (new matter): survival or death?Lean toward: survival
Time: A-theory or B-theory?Lean toward: A-theoryBut I think presentism and growing block are false.
Trolley problem (five straight ahead, one on side track, turn requires switching, what ought one do?): switch or don't switch?There is no fact of the matter
Truth: correspondence, deflationary, or epistemic?Lean toward: deflationaryI don't like this term--deflationary--but I am expressivist about truth.
Zombies: inconceivable, conceivable but not metaphysically possible, or metaphysically possible?There is no fact of the matterI have real doubts about metaphysical possibility