Theoretical identity, reference fixing, and Boyd's defense of type materialism

Philosophia 34 (2):169-172 (2006)
Abstract
In his "Materialism without Reductionism: What Materialism Does not Entail," Richard Boyd answers Kripke's challenge to materialists to come up with a way to explain away the apparent contingency of mind-brain identities. Boyd accuses Kripke of an imaginative myopia manifesting itself as a failure to realize that the more theoretical term in the identity is fixed by contingent descriptions - descriptions that might pick out otherworldly kinds of neural events where C-fibres are absent. If this is something we can confuse in the imagination with actual C-fibre firings, then we have an explanation of the apparent contingency of the necessary identity 'Pain=C-fiber firings.' However, for this to succeed it must be the case that the reference of 'C-fiber firings'€™ is fixed by some contingent description, which is false. Boyd, I submit, has failed to answer Kripke'€™s challenge after all.
Keywords theoretical identity  Richard Boyd  materialism
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s11406-006-9024-x
Options
 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: 32,678
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
Deconstructing New Wave Materialism.Terence E. Horgan & John L. Tienson - 2001 - In Carl Gillett & Barry M. Loewer (eds.), Physicalism and its Discontents. Cambridge University Press. pp. 307--318.
Reference Failure and Scientific Realism: A Response to the Meta-Induction.D. Cummiskey - 1992 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 43 (1):21-40.
Kripke, Cartesian Intuitions, and Materialism.George A. Sher - 1977 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 7 (2):227-38.
A Kripkean Objection to Kripke's Arguments Against the Identity-Theories.Olav Gjelsvik - 1988 - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 30 (December):435-50.
Materialism.Charles E. Jarrett - 1982 - Philosophy Research Archives 1459:457-497.
Fixing the Reference of Theoretical Terms.Robert Nola - 1980 - Philosophy of Science 47 (4):505-531.
15 How to Be a Moral Realist.Richard N. Boyd - 1995 - In Paul K. Moser & J. D. Trout (eds.), Contemporary Materialism: A Reader. Routledge. pp. 297.
Maxwell and Materialism.Emmett L. Holman - 1986 - Synthese 66 (March):505-14.
Kripke's Argument Against the Identity Thesis.Michael E. Levin - 1975 - Journal of Philosophy 72 (March):149-67.
The Metaphysics of Irreducibility.Derk Pereboom & Hilary Kornblith - 1991 - Philosophical Studies 63 (August):125-45.
Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total downloads
62 ( #97,229 of 2,236,870 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #266,081 of 2,236,870 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature