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About this topic
Summary For many, the motivation to investigate personal identity is its seemingly tight (and perhaps grounding) connection to many normative concerns.  These include moral responsibility, compensation, prudence, various moral emotions (e.g., guilt, shame, and pride), abortion, definition of death, advance directives, genetic manipulation, and population ethics.  The relation between identity and these practical concerns is controversial, however, with several theorists questioning whether identity has much, or any, bearing on them at all.
Key works John Locke first explicitly explored the relation between personal identity and moral responsibility (see Perry 1975).  The first major contemporary explorer of these issues was Derek Parfit, in Parfit 1971, Parfit 1973, followed by a more wide-ranging discussion in Part III of Parfit 1984.  Other significant works on various aspects of the topic include Williams 1981, Johnston 1987, Korsgaard 1989, Jeske 1993, Schechtman 1996, Brink 1997, Olson 1997, Conee 1999, McMahan 2002, DeGrazia 2005, and Shoemaker 2007.
Introductions Encyclopedia entry: Shoemaker 2008.  Introductory books: DeGrazia 2005 and Shoemaker 2008.
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  1. Justification and Survival.Malcolm Acock - 1981 - Philosophical Studies 39 (3):247 - 261.
  2. Personhood, Ethics, and Animal Cognition: Situating Animals in Hare's Two-Level Utilitarianism, by Gary E. Varner * The Philosophy of Animal Minds, Edited by Robert W. Lurz.K. Andrews - 2014 - Mind 123 (491):959-966.
  3. On Cultural Survival.Gil anidjar - 2004 - Angelaki 9 (2):5 – 15.
  4. Personal Identity and Mental Content.James Baillie - 1997 - Philosophical Psychology 10 (3):323-33.
    In this paper, I attempt to map out the 'logical geography' of the territory in which issues of mental content and of personal identity meet. In particular, I investigate the possibility of combining a psychological criterion of personal identity with an externalist theory of content. I argue that this can be done, but only by accepting an assumption that has been widely accepted but barely argued for, namely that when someone switches linguistic communities, the contents of their thoughts do not (...)
  5. Taylor and Parfit on Personal Identity: A Response to Lotter [1].D. P. Baker - 1999 - South African Journal of Philosophy 18 (3):331-346.
  6. Reducing Concern with Self: Parfit and the Ancient Buddhist Schools.Ananyo Basu - 1997 - In Douglas Allen & Ashok Kumar Malhotra (eds.), Culture and Self: Philosophical and Religious Perspectives, East and West. Westview Press. pp. 97--109.
  7. Survival as a Social Construct.Z. Bauman - 1992 - Theory, Culture and Society 9 (1):1-36.
  8. In Defence of Self-Interest: A Response to Parfit.S. Beck - 1987 - South African Journal of Philosophy 6 (4):119-124.
    Derek Parfit argues in Reasons and Persons that acting according to your present desires is more rational, or at least as rational, as acting in your long-term self-interest. To do this, he puts forward a case supporting a 'critical present-aim theory' of rationality opposed to the self-interest theory, and then argues against a number of possible replies. This article is a response to these arguments, concluding that Parfit's favouring of the present-aim theory is unfounded, and that self-interest is the better (...)
  9. Impersonal Identity and Corrupting Concepts.Kathy Behrendt - 2005 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 43 (2):159-188.
    How does the concept of a person affect our beliefs about ourselves and the world? In an intriguing recent addition to his established Reductionist view of personal identity, Derek Parfit speculates that there could be beings who do not possess the concept of a person. Where we talk and think about persons, selves, subjects, or agents, they talk and think about sequences of thoughts and experiences related to a particular brain and body. Nevertheless their knowledge and experience of the world (...)
  10. The New Neo-Kantian and Reductionist Debate.Kathy Behrendt - 2003 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 84 (4):331-350.
    Has Derek Parfit modified his views on personal identity in light of Quassim Cassam’s neo-Kantian argument that to experience the world as objective, we must think of ourselves as enduring subjects of experience? Both parties suggest there is no longer a serious dispute between them. I retrace the path that led to this truce, and contend that the debate remains open. Parfit’s recent work reveals a re-formulation of his ostensibly abandoned claim that there could be impersonal descriptions of reality. I (...)
  11. Derek Parfit.Kathy Behrendt - 2002 - In Leemon McHenry, P. Dematteis & P. Fosl (eds.), British Philosophers, 1800-2000. Bruccoli Clark Layman. pp. 262--168.
  12. Chapter Seven Struggle for Survival.Milton Berman - 1961 - In John Fiske: The Evolution of a Popularizer. Harvard University Press. pp. 131-156.
  13. Has Kant Refuted Parfit?Simon Blackburn - 1997 - In J. Dancy (ed.), Reading Parfit. Blackwell. pp. 180--201.
  14. People! Challenge to Survival.C. P. Blacker - 1961 - The Eugenics Review 53 (2):99.
  15. Let's Have a Better World: A Program for Progress and Survival.Paul Bloomfield - 1957 - The Eugenics Review 48 (4):226.
  16. Parfit on Selves and Their Interests. Bodanszky - 1987 - Analysis 47:47-50.
  17. Human Survival.W. R. Bousfield - 1923 - Hibbert Journal 22:501.
  18. The Damage of Crystals by Collimated Fission Fragments.F. P. Bowden & P. E. Caspar - 1963 - Philosophical Magazine 8 (96):2091-2095.
  19. Fission Fragment Damage in Tungsten.K. M. Bowkett, L. T. Chadderton, H. Norden & B. Ralph - 1967 - Philosophical Magazine 15 (134):415-421.
  20. A Study of Fission Fragment Damage in Tungsten with the Field-Ion Microscope.K. M. Bowkett, L. T. Chadderton, H. Norden & B. Ralph - 1965 - Philosophical Magazine 11 (111):651-656.
  21. Essence Against Identity.Teresa Brennan - 1996 - Metaphilosophy 27 (1‐2):92-103.
  22. Utility Monsters for the Fission Age.Rachael Briggs & Daniel Nolan - 2015 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 96 (2):392-407.
    One of the standard approaches to the metaphysics of personal identity has some counter-intuitive ethical consequences when combined with maximising consequentialism and a plausible doctrine about aggregation of consequences. This metaphysical doctrine is the so-called ‘multiple occupancy’ approach to puzzles about fission and fusion. It gives rise to a new version of the ‘utility monster’ problem, particularly difficult problems about infinite utility, and a new version of a Parfit-style ‘repugnant conclusion’. While the article focuses on maximising consequentialism for simplicity, the (...)
  23. Why Individual Identity Matters.Mark T. Brown - 1990 - Southwest Philosophy Review 6 (1):99-104.
  24. Values for Survival.Stuart M. Brown & Lewis Mumford - 1946 - Philosophical Review 55 (4):477.
  25. Matters of Metaphysics.Alex Byrne & D. H. Mellor - 1993 - Philosophical Review 102 (2):285.
  26. Logic Matters. [REVIEW]F. K. C. - 1973 - Review of Metaphysics 27 (1):125-126.
  27. The Further Fact View of Personal Identity: The Case Against Parfit's Reductionism.Jack Stanley Call - 2001 - Dissertation, The Claremont Graduate University
    In this dissertation I defend the claim that what matters in survival is continuing to be conscious or recovering consciousness, and its corollary that identity is a necessary condition for what matters in survival. ;Derek Parfit opposes this view, and my defense of it consists in a critical examination of the main types of imaginary cases he uses to argue for his Reductionist View . I argue for the following points: In a spectrum of cases in which varying percentages of (...)
  28. The Tyranny of Survival and Other Pathologies of Civilized Life.Daniel Callahan - 1985 - Upa.
    Originally published in 1973 by Macmillan, this probing book examines the uses, control and consequences of technology in a world which must either take realistic stock of its obsession with unbridled progress and individual freedom or perish in its excesses. Co-published with the Center for the Study of Values, University of Delaware.
  29. Is Connectedness Necessary to What Matters in Survival.Scot Campbell - 2001 - Ratio 14 (3):193-202.
  30. Brennan, A., "Conditions of Identity: A Study of Identity and Survival". [REVIEW]W. R. Carter - 1989 - Mind 98:315.
  31. Artifacts of Theseus: Fact and Fission.W. R. Carter - 1983 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 61 (3):248 – 265.
  32. On Two Arguments for the Indeterminacy of Personal Identity.Helen Morris Cartwright - 1993 - Synthese 95 (2):241-273.
    Both arguments are based on the breakdown of normal criteria of identity in certain science-fictional circumstances. In one case, normal criteria would support the identity of person A with each of two other persons, B and C; and it is argued that, in the imagined circumstances, A=B and A=C have no truth value. In the other, a series or spectrum of cases is tailored to a sorites argument. At one end of the spectrum, persons A and B are such that (...)
  33. II—Parfit on Persons.Quassim Cassam - 1993 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 93 (1):17-38.
  34. Kant and Reductionism.Quassim Cassam - 1989 - Review of Metaphysics 43 (September):72-106.
  35. Humankind's First Fundamental Right: Survival.Furio Cerutti - 2015 - Constellations 22 (1):59-67.
  36. Conditions of Identity: A Study of Identity and Survival.James Van Cleve & Andrew Brennan - 1992 - Philosophical Review 101 (2):411.
  37. The Survival of Political Man.J. Coatman & E. E. Harris - 1951 - Philosophical Quarterly 1 (3):287.
  38. Beliefs and R?Les.Gerald A. Cohen - 1966 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 67:17 - 34.
  39. Nozick, Parfit, and Platonic Glasses.Wesley Cooper - 2008 - Sorites 20:98-116.
    The Closest-Continuer schema of identity is distinguished here from the Closest-Continuer theory of personal identity, the latter applying the former to personal identity by reference to the self's self-defining activity. Nozick's «Platonic glasses» mode of conceptualizing personal identity is defended against Parfit's objections and extended beyond hypothetical branching to the actual branching hypothesized by the «no-collapse» theories of quantum mechanics. The reader may wish to consult Lev Vaidman's Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy essay, «Many-Worlds Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics», for an accessible (...)
  40. Physical Persons and Postmortem Survival Without Temporal Gaps.Kevin J. Corcoran - 2001 - In Soul, Body, and Survival. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
  41. The Growth of Fission Gas Bubbles in Irradiated Uranium Dioxide.R. M. Cornell - 1969 - Philosophical Magazine 19 (159):539-554.
  42. Survival Training.Rita D. Costello - forthcoming - Feminist Studies.
  43. Reading Parfit.Jonathan Dancy - 1998 - Erkenntnis 49 (2):237-242.
    _ Reading Parfit _ brings together some of the most distinguished scholars in the field to discuss and critique Derek Parfit's outstanding work, _ Reasons and Persons, _.
  44. Parfit and Indirectly Self-Defeating Theories.Jonathan Dancy - 1997 - In J. Dancy (ed.), Reading Parfit. Blackwell. pp. 1--23.
  45. Prudence, Identity, and Value.Ramon Das - 2003 - In Heather Dyke (ed.), Time and Ethics: Essays at the Intersection. Kluwer Academic Publishers. pp. 27--39.
  46. II?Prolifers for Survival.Susan Dowell - 1985 - New Blackfriars 66 (776):67-72.
  47. Matters of Metaphysics. E. KyburgHenry Jr - 1992 - Review of Metaphysics 46 (2):409-411.
  48. "Survival Research:" A New Discipline Needed Now.Peter Seidel Guest Editor - 2010 - World Futures 59 (3-4):129-133.
  49. Review of Matters of Faith and Matters of Principle.Rem B. Edwards - 1983 - Review of Metaphysics 36 (4):956-958.
  50. Why Parfit Did Not Go Far Enough.Douglas Ehring - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 165 (1):133-149.
    Parfit has argued for the revolutionary thesis that personal identity does not matter in ordinary survival, only the R-relation does. “Reconciliationists,” such as Lewis, have tried to stop this revolution, arguing that both personal identity and the R-relation matter. The disagreement has been between those who hold that only the R-relation matters and those who hold that, in addition, personal identity matters. But there is a third option. I argue that Parfit is right that personal identity does not matter but (...)
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