David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Metaphilosophy 35 (4):536-553 (2004)
Philosophers have long suggested that our attitude of special concern for the future is problematic for a reductionist view of personal identity, such as the one developed by Derek Parfit in Reasons and Persons. Specifically, it is often claimed that reductionism cannot provide justification for this attitude. In this paper, I argue that much of the debate in this arena involves a misconception of the connection between metaphysical theories of personal identity and our special concern. A proper understanding of this connection reveals that the above-mentioned objection to reductionism cannot get off the ground. Though the connection I propose is weaker than the connection typically presupposed, I nonetheless run up against a conclusion reached by Susan Wolf in “Self-Interest and Interest in Selves.” According to Wolf, metaphysical theses about the nature of personal identity have no significance for our attitude of special concern. By arguing against Wolf’s treatment of self-interest, I suggest that her arguments for this conclusion are misguided. This discussion leads to further clarification of the nature of the link between theories of personal identity and our special concern and, ultimately, to a better understanding of the rationality of this attitude
|Keywords||Ethics Future Personal Identity Parfit, D Wolf, S|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Jens Johansson (2007). Non-Reductionism and Special Concern. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 85 (4):641 – 657.
Similar books and articles
Christine Tappolet (2010). Procrastination and Personal Identity. In Andreou Chrisoula & White Mark D. (eds.), The Thief of Time. Philosophical Essays on Procrastination. Oxford University Press. 115--129.
David Shoemaker, Personal Identity and Ethics. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Derek Parfit (1982). Personal Identity and Rationality. Synthese 53 (2):227-241.
Tove Finnestad (2001). Trivial Personal Differences. Philosophical Papers 30 (1):41-55.
Susan Wolf (1986). Self-Interest and Interest in Selves. Ethics 96 (July):704-20.
Timothy Chappell (1998). Reductionism About Persons; and What Matters. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 98 (1):41-58.
David Haugen (1995). Personal Identity and Concern for the Future. Philosophia 24 (3-4):481-492.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads150 ( #3,933 of 1,088,379 )
Recent downloads (6 months)8 ( #13,559 of 1,088,379 )
How can I increase my downloads?