In Manuel Dries (ed.), Nietzsche on consciousness and the embodied mind. De Gruyter. pp. 93-112 (2018)

Authors
Mattia Riccardi
University of Porto
Abstract
Abstract: Nietzsche’s famously wrote that “consciousness is a surface” (EH, Why I am so clever, 9: 97). The aim of this paper is to make sense of this quite puzzling contention—Superficiality, for short. In doing this, I shall focus on two further claims—both to be found in Gay Science 354—which I take to substantiate Nietzsche’s endorsement of Superficiality. The first claim is that consciousness is superfluous—which I call the “superfluousness claim” (SC). The second claim is that consciousness is the source of some deep falsification—which I call the “falsification claim” (FC). I shall start by considering Nietzsche’s notion of consciousness. Here, I shall argue that the kind of consciousness he is concerned with is in fact self-consciousness and that he put forward a higher-order theory of it. Then, I shall address the two claims. Regarding (FC), my proposal will be that, according to Nietzsche, the content of (self-)conscious mental states is falsified in virtue of its being articulated propositionally. Regarding (SC), I shall claim that it is best read as a weak version of epiphenomenalism about conscious causation. In addressing both points, I shall discuss in particular the influential reading of Nietzsche’s theory of consciousness offered by Katsafanas (2005).
Keywords Nietzsche  Consciousness
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References found in this work BETA

On a Confusion About a Function of Consciousness.Ned Block - 1995 - Brain and Behavioral Sciences 18 (2):227-–247.
Consciousness and Mind.David Rosenthal - 2005 - Oxford University Press UK.
The Principles of Psychology.William James - 1890 - Les Etudes Philosophiques 11 (3):506-507.
On the Genealogy of Morality.Friedrich Nietzsche - 1998 - Cambridge University Press.

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Citations of this work BETA

Inner Opacity. Nietzsche on Introspection and Agency.Mattia Riccardi - 2015 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 58 (3):221-243.
The Innocence of Becoming: Nietzsche Against Guilt.Brian Leiter - 2019 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 62 (1):70-92.
Psychology Without a Soul, Philosophy Without an I: Nietzsche and 19th Century Psychophysics.Pietro Gori - 2015 - In Bartholomew Ryan, Maria Joao Mayer Branco & João Constancio (eds.), Nietzsche and the Problem of Subjectivity. De Gruyter. pp. 166-195.
Strangers to Ourselves: A Nietzschean Challenge to the Badness of Suffering.Nicolas Delon - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.

View all 15 citations / Add more citations

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