John Campbell Reference and Consciousness 267pp. Clarendon Press, Oxford. £40 (paperback, £14.99)

How does thought latch onto reality? Our minds have the ability to reach out and refer to items in the external world. I can think about the tree outside my study window, say, or about Margaret Thatcher, or about solar neutrinos. But how is the trick done? How can my thoughts refer to things beyond themselves? We tend to take the mind's referential powers for granted, but they are enormously difficult to explain. Whole philosophical systems have foundered on the problem of understanding mental reference.
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John Campbell (2011). Consciousness and Reference. In Brian McLaughlin, Ansgar Beckermann & Sven Walter (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Mind. OUP Oxford
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