Amending the revisionist model of the Capgras delusion: A further argument for the role of patient experience in delusional belief formation

Garry Young
University of Melbourne
Recent papers on the Capgras delusion have focused on the role played by subpersonal abductive inference in the formation and maintenance of the delusional belief. In these accounts, the delusional belief is posited as the first delusion-related event of which the patient is conscious. As a consequence, an explanatory role for anomalous patient experience is denied. The aim of this paper is to challenge this revisionist position and to integrate subpersonal inference within a model of the Capgras delusion which includes a role for experiential content. I argue that the following revisionist claims are problematic: (a) that a fully-formed belief enters consciousness, and (b) that this is the first conscious delusion-related event. Instead, it is my contention that a delusional thought (arrived at through subpersonal abductive inference) and an anomalous experience co-occur in consciousness prior to the formation of the delusional belief. The co-occurrence of thought and anomalous experience overcomes problems with the revisionist position resulting in an account of the Capgras delusion with greater explanatory efficacy.
Keywords Bayes’ theorem  Abductive inference  Anomalous experience  Endorsement and explanationist accounts  Indicative imagination  Face recognition system  Skin conductance response (SCR)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Reprint years 2015
DOI 10.26913/50302014.0112.0005
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Monothematic Delusions: Towards a Two-Factor Account.Martin Davies, Max Coltheart, Robyn Langdon & N. Breen - 2001 - Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology 8 (2-3):133-58.
Abductive Inference and Delusional Belief.Max Coltheart, Peter Menzies & John Sutton - 2010 - Cognitive Neuropsychiatry 15 (1):261-287.
Recreative Minds.Gregory Currie & Ian Ravenscroft - 2004 - Mind 113 (450):329-334.

View all 27 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Capgras Delusion: An Interactionist Model.Garry Young - 2008 - Consciousness and Cognition 17 (3):863-876.
The Phenomenological Role of Affect in the Capgras Delusion.Matthew Ratcliffe - 2008 - Continental Philosophy Review 41 (2):195-216.
Abductive Inference and Delusional Belief.Max Coltheart, Peter Menzies & John Sutton - 2010 - Cognitive Neuropsychiatry 15 (1):261-287.
Delusions as Performance Failures.Philip Gerrans - 2001 - Cognitive Neuropsychiatry 6 (3).
Bayesian Models, Delusional Beliefs, and Epistemic Possibilities.Matthew Parrott - 2014 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science (1):axu036.
Delusions, Dreams, and the Nature of Identification.Sam Wilkinson - 2015 - Philosophical Psychology 28 (2):203-226.
Self-Deception and Delusions.Alfred R. Mele - 2006 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 2 (1):109-124.


Added to PP index

Total views
187 ( #35,631 of 2,236,238 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
40 ( #14,635 of 2,236,238 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes

Sign in to use this feature