The brain in the vat and the question of metaphysical realism

Abstract
This article indicates some ways in which the fantasy of the brain in the vat has been used in thought experiments to discuss important philosophical problems. The first has to do with scepticism about the external world. The second has to do with Hilary Putnam’s arguments for the indeterminacy of reference and his rejection of metaphysical realism. The third issue to which the brain in the vat is relevant has to do with the difference between broad and narrow content of beliefs and Putnam’s challenging assertion that reference is not ‘in the head’. Though there are brief suggestions for dealing with these problems and saving metaphysical realism, the main purpose is to indicate the relevance of the fantasy of the brain in the vat to discussion of these issues
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 14,265
External links
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
Donald Davidson (1969). True to the Facts. Journal of Philosophy 66 (21):748-764.
Alan Musgrave (1997). The T-Scheme Plus Epistemic Truth Equals Idealism. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 75 (4):490 – 496.
Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Similar books and articles
Mark Sprevak & Christina McLeish (2004). Magic, Semantics, and Putnam's Vat Brains. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 35 (2):227-236.
Henry Jackman (2001). Semantic Pragmatism and A Priori Knowledge. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 31 (4):455 - 480.
David J. Chalmers (2005). The Matrix as Metaphysics. In Christopher Grau (ed.), Philosophers Explore the Matrix. Oxford University Press 132.
Sherrilyn Roush (2010). Closure On Skepticism. Journal of Philosophy 107 (5):243-256.
Lance P. Hickey, The “Brain in a Vat” Argument. Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Michael Huemer (2000). Direct Realism and the Brain-in-a-Vat Argument. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 61 (2):397-413.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2010-08-30

Total downloads

16 ( #154,465 of 1,700,354 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #362,609 of 1,700,354 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.