First Person Singular: Review of: Brian Rotman: Becoming Beside Ourselves: Alphabet, ghosts, distributed human beings [Book Review]
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Brian Rotman argues that (one) “mind” and (one) “god” are only conceivable, literally, because of (alphabetic) literacy, which allowed us to designate each of these ghosts as an incorporeal, speaker-independent “I” (or, in the case of infinity, a notional agent that goes on counting forever). I argue that to have a mind is to have the capacity to feel. No one can be sure which organisms feel, hence have minds, but it seems likely that one-celled organisms and plants do not, whereas animals do. So minds originated before humans and before language --hence, a fortiori, before writing, whether alphabetic or ideographic.
|Keywords||language writing literacy mind consciousness|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library||
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Ludo Verhoeven & Anne Vermeer (2006). Sociocultural Variation in Literacy Achievement. British Journal of Educational Studies 54 (2):189 - 211.
Norton Nelkin (1987). What is It Like to Be a Person? Mind and Language 2 (3):220-41.
William R. Carter (2002). Many Minds, No Persons. Croatian Journal of Philosophy 2 (4):55-70.
Eva M. Simms (2010). Questioning the Value of Literacy: A Phenomenology of Speaking and Reading in Children. In K. Coats (ed.), Handbook of Children’s and Young Adult Literature. Routledge.
Philip Goff (2010). Ghosts and Sparse Properties: Why Physicalists Have More to Fear From Ghosts Than Zombies. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81 (1):119-139.
John Kadvany (1991). Dialectic and Diagonalization. Inquiry 34 (1):3 – 25.
Miriam Corris, Christopher Manning, Susan Poetsch & Jane Simpson, Dictionaries and Endangered Languages.
Greg Janzen (2012). Physicalists Have Nothing to Fear From Ghosts. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 20 (1):91-104.
Added to index2009-04-13
Total downloads24 ( #83,807 of 1,679,478 )
Recent downloads (6 months)4 ( #59,981 of 1,679,478 )
How can I increase my downloads?