Personal identity and practical concerns

Mind 116 (462):317-357 (2007)
Many philosophers have taken there to be an important relation between personal identity and several of our practical concerns (among them moral responsibility, compensation, and self-concern). I articulate four natural methodological assumptions made by those wanting to construct a theory of the relation between identity and practical concerns, and I point out powerful objections to each assumption, objections constituting serious methodological obstacles to the overall project. I then attempt to offer replies to each general objection in a way that leaves the project intact, albeit significantly changed. Perhaps the most important change stems from the recognition that the practical concerns motivating investigation into personal identity turn out to be not univocal, as is typically thought, such that each of the different practical concerns may actually be related to personal identity in very different ways.
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DOI 10.1093/mind/fzm317
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Marya Schechtman (2010). Personhood and the Practical. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 31 (4):271-283.
Giovanni Boniolo (2013). Is an Account of Identity Necessary for Bioethics? What Post-Genomic Biomedicine Can Teach Us. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 44 (3):401-411.

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