Aristotle's Critique of Functionalist Theories of Mind

Idealistic Studies 30 (3):209-232 (2000)

The present paper argues that Burnyeat's view is fundamentally correct, but approaches the issues from a somewhat different angle. The claim that forAristotle the form and the matter are non-contingently related is an allusion to Aristotle's difficult doctrine of the unity of substances. The functionalist interpretation underestimates Aristotle's doctrine of the unity of substance. Irwin thinks that Aristotle's view is a version of functionalism but acknowledges that his claims go beyond what is normally associated with functionalism. But Irwin too fails to take sufficient account of his own acknowledgement of the importance of the unity of substance doctrine. The proper appraisal of the functionalist interpretation cannot, therefore, avoid the "abyss" of the Metaphysics
Keywords Continental Philosophy  History of Philosophy
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ISBN(s) 0046-8541
DOI 10.5840/idstudies200030311
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