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Profile: Erik C. Banks (Wright State University)
  1. Erik C. Banks, Ernst Mach's Contributions to the Philosophy of Mind.
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  2. Erik C. Banks (2014). The Realistic Empiricism of Mach, James, and Russell: Neutral Monism Reconceived. Cambridge University Press.
    The book revives the neutral monism of Mach, James, and Russell and applies the updated view to the problem of redefining physicalism, explaining the origins of sensation, and the problem of deriving extended physical objects and systems from an ontology of events.
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  3. Erik C. Banks (2013). Metaphysics for Positivists: Mach Versus the Vienna Circle. Discipline Filosophiche 23 (1):57-77.
    This article distinguishes between Machian empiricism and the logical positivism of the Vienna Circle and associated philosophers. Mach's natural philosophy was a first order attempt to reform and reorganize physics, not a second order reconstruction of the "language" of physics. Mach's elements were not sense data but realistic events in the natural world and in minds, and Mach admitted unobserved elements as part of his world view. Mach's critique of metaphysics was far more subtle and concerned the elimination of sensory (...)
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  4. Erik C. Banks (2013). Extension and Measurement: A Constructivist Program From Leibniz to Grassmann. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 44 (1):20-31.
    Extension is probably the most general natural property. Is it a fundamental property? Leibniz claimed the answer was no, and that the structureless intuition of extension concealed more fundamental properties and relations. This paper follows Leibniz's program through Herbart and Riemann to Grassmann and uses Grassmann's algebra of points to build up levels of extensions algebraically. Finally, the connection between extension and measurement is considered.
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  5. Erik C. Banks (2013). Williams James' Direct Realism: A Reconstruction. History of Philosophy Quarterly 30 (3):271-291.
    William James' Radical Empiricist essays offer a unique and powerful argument for direct realism about our perceptions of objects. This theory can be completed with some observations by Kant on the intellectual preconditions for a perceptual judgment. Finally James and Kant deliver a powerful blow to the representational theory of perception and knowledge, which applies quite broadly to theories of representation generally.
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  6. Erik C. Banks (2012). Review of Blackmore. [REVIEW] Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences 48 (4):395-397.
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  7. Erik C. Banks (2012). Sympathy for the Devil: Reconsidering Ernst Mach's Empiricism. [REVIEW] Metascience 21 (2):321-330.
    A 2012 survey article for Metascience which explains Mach's realistic brand of empiricism, contrasting it with the common phenomenalist reading of Mach by John Blackmore in two recent books.
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  8. Erik C. Banks (2010). Neutral Monism Reconsidered. Philosophical Psychology 23 (2):173-187.
    Neutral monism is a position in metaphysics defended by Mach, James, and Russell in the early twentieth century. It holds that minds and physical objects are essentially two different orderings of the same underlying neutral elements of nature. This paper sets out some of the central concepts, theses and the historical background of ideas that inform this doctrine of elements. The discussion begins with the classic neutral monism of Mach, James, and Russell in the first part of the paper, then (...)
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  9. Erik C. Banks (2009). Russell's Hypothesis and the New Physicalism. Proceedings of the Ohio Philosophical Association 6.
    Bertrand Russell claimed in the Analysis of Matter that physics is purely structural or relational and so leaves out intrinsic properties of matter, properties that, he said, are evident to us at least in one case: as the internal states of our brains. Russell's hypothesis has figured in recent discussions of physicalism and the mind body problem, by Chalmers, Strawson and Stoljar, among others, but I want to reject two popular interpretations: 1. a conception of intrinsic properties of matter as (...)
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  10. Erik C. Banks (2008). The Problem of Extension in Natural Philosophy. Philosophia Naturalis 45 (2):211-235.
    An overview of the problem of constructing extension combinatorially from qualities cum dispositional powers. In the model recommended here, Grassmann's algebra provides the combinatorial structure while Machian elements give the content.
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  11. Erik C. Banks (2007). Machian Elements and Psychophysical Relations. In Mori S. (ed.), Proceedings of the Int'l Society for Psychophysics. Int'l Soc. for Psychophysics.
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  12. Erik C. Banks (2005). Kant, Herbart and Riemann. Kant-Studien 96 (2):208-234.
    A look at the dynamical concept of space and space-generating processes to be found in Kant, J.F. Herbart and the mathematician Bernhard Riemann's philosophical writings.
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  13. Erik C. Banks (2004). The Philosophical Roots of Ernst Mach's Economy of Thought. Synthese 139 (1):23-53.
    A full appreciation for Ernst Mach's doctrine of the economy of thought must take account of his direct realism about particulars (elements) and his anti-realism about space-time laws as economical constructions. After a review of thought economy, its critics and some contemporary forms, the paper turns to the philosophical roots of Mach's doctrine. Mach claimed that the simplest, most parsimonious theories economized memory and effort by using abstract concepts and laws instead of attending to the details of each individual event (...)
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  14. Erik C. Banks (2003). Ernst Mach's World Elements. Kluwer.
    A consideration of Mach's elements, his philosophy of neutral monism, and philosophy of physics, especially space and time, much of it based on unpublished writings from the Nachlass and other original sources. The historical connection between Mach and logical positivism is shown to be superficial at best, and Mach's elements are shown to be mind independent natural qualities (world-elements) with dynamic force, not limited to human sensations.
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  15. Erik C. Banks (2002). Ernst Mach's ''New Theory of Matter'' and His Definition of Mass. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 33 (4):605-635.
  16. Erik C. Banks (2001). Ernst Mach and the Episode of the Monocular Depth Sensations. Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences 37 (4):327-348.
    A look at Mach's work on monocular stereoscopy with relation to Mach Bands and the sensation of space.
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