Transfer of Personality to Synthetic Human ("mind uploading") and the Social Construction of Identity

Journal of Consciousness Studies 24 (11-12):6-30 (2017)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

Humans have long wondered whether they can survive the death of their physical bodies. Some people now look to technology as a means by which this might occur, using terms such 'whole brain emulation', 'mind uploading', and 'substrate independent minds' to describe a set of hypothetical procedures for transferring or emulating the functioning of a human mind on a synthetic substrate. There has been much debate about the philosophical implications of such procedures for personal survival. Most participants to that debate assume that the continuation of identity is an objective fact that can be revealed by scientific enquiry or rational debate. We bring into this debate a perspective that has so far been neglected: that personal identities are in large part social constructs. Consequently, to enable a particular identity to survive the transference process, it is not sufficient to settle age-old philosophical questions about the nature of identity. It is also necessary to maintain certain networks of interaction between the synthetic person and its social environment, and sustain a collective belief in the persistence of identity. We defend this position by using the example of the Dalai Lama in Tibetan Buddhist tradition and identify technological procedures that could increase the credibility of personal continuity between biological and artificial substrates.

Links

PhilArchive

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Personal Identity and Uploading.Mark Walker - 2011 - Journal of Evolution and Technology 22 (1):37-52.
Coalescing minds: Brain uploading-related group mind scenarios.Kaj Sotala & Harri Valpola - 2012 - International Journal of Machine Consciousness 4 (01):293-312.
Uploading and Branching Identity.Michael A. Cerullo - 2015 - Minds and Machines 25 (1):17-36.
Ray Kurzweil and Uploading: Just Say No!Nicholas Agar - 2011 - Journal of Evolution and Technology 22 (1):23-36.
Against Branching Identity.William A. Bauer - 2017 - Philosophia 45 (4):1709-1719.
A sense of identity: Prolegomena to a social theory of personal identity.John D. GreenwooD - 1994 - Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 24 (1):25–46.
The social nature of personal identity.Michael Quante - 2007 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 14 (5-6):56-76.
Emergence and the Problem of Personal Identity.David Neuburger - 2013 - Dissertation, San Diego State University
Persons and Personal Identity.Amy Kind - 2015 - Malden, MA: Polity.
Personal identity.Eric T. Olson - 2002 - In Stephen P. Stich & Ted A. Warfield (eds.), Blackwell Guide to Philosophy of Mind. Blackwell.

Analytics

Added to PP
2017-12-13

Downloads
2,888 (#2,438)

6 months
197 (#12,566)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

John Danaher
University College, Galway

References found in this work

Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press.
The social construction of what?Ian Hacking - 1999 - Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press.
Reasons and Persons.Joseph Margolis - 1986 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 47 (2):311-327.
What are we?Eric T. Olson - 2007 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 14 (5-6):37-55.

View all 24 references / Add more references