Memory and identity

Philosophical Studies 153 (1):65-79 (2011)

Abstract

Among the many topics covered in Sven Bernecker’s impressive study of memory is the relation between memory and personal identity. Bernecker uses his grammatical taxonomy of memory and causal account to defend the claim that memory does not logically presuppose personal identity and hence that circularity objections to memory-based accounts of personal identity are misplaced. In my comment I investigate these claims, suggesting that the relation between personal identity and memory is more complicated than Bernecker’s analysis suggests. In particular, I argue that while he shows that some memories do not presuppose personal identity he fails to show that those that are appealed to in memory-based accounts of personal identity do not, and that the features of his view that allow him to define memory without reference to personal identity also obscure important features of memory that must be part of a complete account

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Marya Schechtman
University of Illinois, Chicago

References found in this work

Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford University Press.
The Constitution of Selves.Marya Schechtman (ed.) - 1996 - Cornell University Press.
Memory: A Philosophical Study.Sven Bernecker - 2010 - Oxford University Press.
The Thread of Life.Richard Wollheim - 1984 - Cambridge University Press.

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Citations of this work

Memory.Kourken Michaelian & John Sutton - 2017 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Is Mental Time Travel Real Time Travel?Michael Barkasi & Melanie G. Rosen - 2020 - Philosophy and the Mind Sciences 1 (1):1-27.
Contiguity and the Causal Theory of Memory.Sarah K. Robins - 2017 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 47 (1):1-19.

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