David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Synthese 68 (August):333-68 (1986)
In this paper I distinguish three alternatives to the functionalist account of qualitative states such as pain. The physicalist-functionalist holds that (1) there could be subjects functionally equivalent to us whose mental states differed in their qualitative character from ours, (2) there could be subjects functionally equivalent to us whose mental states lacked qualitative character altogether and (3) there could not be subjects like us in all objective respects whose qualitative states differed from ours. The physicalist-functionalist holds (1) and (3) but denies (2). The transcendentalist holds (1) and (2) and denies (3). I argue that both versions of physicalist-functionalism inherit the problem of property dualism which originally helped to motivate functionalist theories of mind. I also argue that neither version of physicalist-functionalism can distinguish in a principled way between those neurophysiological properties of a subject which are relevant to the qualitative character of that subject's mental states and those which are not. I conclude that the only alternative to a functionalist account of qualitative states is a transcendentalist account and that this alternative is not likely to appeal to the critics of functionalism
|Keywords||Epistemology Functionalism Mental States Physicalism Qualitative|
|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
Ned Block (1980). Are Absent Qualia Impossible? Philosophical Review 89 (2):257-74.
Paul M. Churchland & Patricia S. Churchland (1981). Functionalism, Qualia and Intentionality. Philosophical Topics 12 (1):121-32.
Daniel C. Dennett (1978). Brainstorms. MIT Press.
Alvin Goldman (1976). Discrimination and Perceptual Knowledge. Journal of Philosophy 73 (November):771-791.
Gilbert Harman (1982). Conceptual Role Semantics. Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 28 (April):242-56.
Citations of this work BETA
Pär Sundström (2011). Phenomenal Concepts. Philosophy Compass 6 (4):267-281.
Jonathan Ellis (2010). Phenomenal Character, Phenomenal Concepts, and Externalism. Philosophical Studies 147 (2):273 - 299.
David J. Cole (1990). Functionalism and Inverted Spectra. Synthese 82 (2):207-22.
Janet Levin (2002). Is Conceptual Analysis Needed for the Reduction of Qualitative States? Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 64 (3):571-591.
James Tartaglia (2013). Conceptualizing Physical Consciousness. Philosophical Psychology 26 (6):817-838.
Similar books and articles
Paul M. Livingston (2005). Functionalism and Logical Analysis. In David Woodruff Smith & Amie L. Thomasson (eds.), Phenomenology and Philosophy of Mind. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 19.
George Seli (2009). Fine-Grained Functionalism: Prospects for Defining Qualitative States. Philosophical Psychology 22 (6):765 – 783.
William G. Lycan (1974). Mental States and Putnam's Functionalist Hypothesis. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 52 (May):48-62.
Lawrence Richard Carleton (1983). The Population of China as One Mind. Philosophy Research Archives 9:665-74.
H. Jacoby (1985). Eliminativism, Meaning, and Qualitative States. Philosophical Studies 47 (March):257-70.
Austen Clark (1985). Spectrum Inversion and the Color Solid. Southern Journal of Philosophy 23 (4):431-43.
Amy Kind (2007). Restrictions on Representationalism. Philosophical Studies 134 (3):405-427.
Alan Weir (2001). More Trouble for Functionalism. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 101 (3):267-293.
H. Jacoby (1990). Empirical Functionalism and Conceivability Arguments. Philosophical Psychology 2 (3):271-82.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads86 ( #14,176 of 1,098,999 )
Recent downloads (6 months)6 ( #43,697 of 1,098,999 )
How can I increase my downloads?