Naturalism and the first-person perspective

In Georg Gasser (ed.), How Successful is Naturalism? Publications of the Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society. Ontos Verlag. pp. 203-226 (2007)
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The first-person perspective is a challenge to naturalism. Naturalistic theories are relentlessly third-personal. The first-person perspective is, well, first-personal; it is the perspective from which one thinks of oneself as oneself* without the aid of any third-person name, description, demonstrative or other referential device. The exercise of the capacity to think of oneself in this first-personal way is the necessary condition of all our self-knowledge, indeed of all our self-consciousness. As important as the first-person perspective is, many philosophers have not appreciated the force of the data from the first-person perspective, and suppose that the first-person perspective presents no particular problems for the naturalizing philosopher. For example, Ned Block commented, “It is of course [phenomenal] consciousness rather than...self-consciousness that has seemed such a scientific mystery.” And David Chalmers says that self-consciousness is one of those psychological states that “pose no deep metaphysical enigmas.”



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Lynne Rudder Baker
PhD: Vanderbilt University; Last affiliation: University of Massachusetts, Amherst

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An ecological approach to disjunctivism.Eros Moreira de Carvalho - 2021 - Synthese 198 (Radical Views on Cognition):285–306.

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