The population of china as one mind

A chronic difficulty for functionalism is the problem of instantiations of a functionalist theory of mind which seem to lack some or all of the mental states--especially qualitative--we want to attribute to minds the theory describes. Here I discuss one such counterexample, Block’s system S, consisting of the population of China organized to simulate a single mind as described by some true, adequate, psychofunctionalist theory. I then defend a version of functionalism against this example, in part by an adaptation of Dennett’s notion of “stances”. A true, adequate theory, as Block understands it, would be appropriate to Dennett’s “design” or (at best) “intentional” stance; but a genuinely true and adequate theory should instead coincide with a “personal” stance. Hence, if system S does instantiate such a theory, we must impute to it mental states, even qualitative, whether or not it “really" has them. Hence Block’s counterexample lacks force
Keywords Block  Functionalism  Mental States  Metaphysics  Dennett, D
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.5840/pra1983916
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 30,888
External links

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

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Empirical Functionalism and Conceivability Arguments.H. Jacoby - 1989 - Philosophical Psychology 2 (3):271-82.
Troubles with Functionalism.Ned Block - 1978 - Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science 9:261-325.
A New Lilliputian Argument Against Machine Functionalism.William G. Lycan - 1979 - Philosophical Studies 35 (April):279-87.
What is Functionalism?Ned Block - 1996 - In Donald M. Borchert (ed.), [Book Chapter]. MacMillan.
Curse of the Qualia.Stephen L. White - 1986 - Synthese 68 (August):333-68.
A Closer Look at the Chinese Nation Argument.E. Sayan - 1988 - Philosophy Research Archives 13:129-36.
Added to PP index

Total downloads
47 ( #122,422 of 2,213,758 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
8 ( #56,767 of 2,213,758 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature