Consciousness and its Place in Nature: Does Physicalism Entail Panpsychism? [Book Review]

Chris Onof
Imperial College London
This collection of papers, Consciousness and its Place in Nature: Does Physicalism Entail Panpsychism?, edited by Anthony Freeman presents seventeen responses to Galen Strawson’s keynote paper which claims that the only plausible way to be a real physicalist is to accept that the intrinsic properties of the physical are experiential in character, i.e., the doctrine of panpsychism. The book concludes with Strawson’s reply to these responses. This “real physicalism” is, according to Strawson, the only way of dealing with what Chalmers calls the “hard problem of consciousness.” This problem lies in the fact that the experiential nature of our conscious experience is a puzzling phenomenon for the materialist. It is of an apparently fundamentally different nature from the rest of the physical world, hence the problem of integrating it into a satisfactory naturalistic world-picture
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