Results for 'Brain in a Vat'

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  1. Serious Theories and Skeptical Theories: Why You Are Probably Not a Brain in a Vat.Michael Huemer - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (4):1031-1052.
    Skeptical hypotheses such as the brain-in-a-vat hypothesis provide extremely poor explanations for our sensory experiences. Because these scenarios accommodate virtually any possible set of evidence, the probability of any given set of evidence on the skeptical scenario is near zero; hence, on Bayesian grounds, the scenario is not well supported by the evidence. By contrast, serious theories make reasonably specific predictions about the evidence and are then well supported when these predictions are satisfied.
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  2.  59
    How You Know You Are Not a Brain in a Vat.Alexander Jackson - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (10):2799-2822.
    A sensible epistemologist may not see how she could know that she is not a brain in a vat ; but she doesn’t panic. She sticks with her empirical beliefs, and as that requires, believes that she is not a BIV. (She does not inferentially base her belief that she is not a BIV on her empirical knowledge—she rejects that ‘Moorean’ response to skepticism.) Drawing on the psychological literature on metacognition, I describe a mechanism that’s plausibly responsible for a (...)
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  3. A Butterfly Dream in a Brain in a Vat.Xiaoqiang Han - 2010 - Philosophia 38 (1):157-167.
    Zhuangzi’s Butterfly Dream story can be read as a skeptical response to the Cartesian Cogito, ergo sum solution, for it presents I exist as fundamentally unprovable, on the grounds that the notion about “I” that it is guaranteed to refer to something existing, which Descartes seems to assume, is unwarranted. The modern anti-skepticism of Hilary Putnam employs a different strategy, which seeks to derive the existence of the world not from some “indubitable” truth such as the existence of myself , (...)
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  4. How I Know I'm Not a Brain in a Vat.José L. Zalabardo - 2009 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 64:65-88.
    I use some ideas of Keith DeRose's to develop an (invariantist!) account of why sceptical reasoning doesn't show that I don't know that I'm not a brain in a vat. I argue that knowledge is subject to the risk-of-error constraint: a true belief won’t have the status of knowledge if there is a substantial risk of the belief being in error that hasn’t been brought under control. When a substantial risk of error is present (i.e. beliefs in propositions that (...)
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  5. Direct Realism and the Brain-in-a-Vat Argument.Michael Huemer - 2000 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 61 (2):397-413.
    The brain-in-a-vat argument for skepticism is best formulated, not using the closure principle, but using the “Preference Principle,” which states that in order to be justified in believing H on the basis of E, one must have grounds for preferring H over each alternative explanation of E. When the argument is formulated this way, Dretske’s and Klein’s responses to it fail. However, the strengthened argument can be refuted using a direct realist account of perception. For the direct realist, refuting (...)
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  6.  61
    Brain in a Vat or Body in a World?: Brainbound Versus Enactive Views of Experience.Evan Thompson & Diego Cosmelli - 2011 - Philosophical Topics 39 (1):163-180.
    We argue that the minimal biological requirements for consciousness include a living body, not just neuronal processes in the skull. Our argument proceeds by reconsidering the brain-in-a-vat thought experiment. Careful examination of this thought experiment indicates that the null hypothesis is that any adequately functional “vat” would be a surrogate body, that is, that the so-called vat would be no vat at all, but rather an embodied agent in the world. Thus, what the thought experiment actually shows is that (...)
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  7.  16
    The Brain in a Vat in Cyberpunk: The Persistence of the Flesh.D. Cavallaro - 2004 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 35 (2):287-305.
    This essay argues that the image of the brain in a vat metaphorically encapsulates articulations of the relationship between the corporeal and the technological dimensions found in cyberpunk fiction and cinema. Cyberpunk is concurrently concerned with actual and imaginary metamorphoses of biological organisms into machines, and of mechanical apparatuses into living entities. Its recurring representation of human beings hooked up to digital matrices vividly recalls the envatted brain activated by electric stimuli, which Hilary Putnam has theorized in the (...)
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  8. A Brain in a Vat Cannot Break Out: Why the Singularity Must Be Extended, Embedded and Embodied.Francis Heylighen & Center Leo Apostel Ecco - 2012 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 19 (1-2):126-142.
    The present paper criticizes Chalmers's discussion of the Singularity, viewed as the emergence of a superhuman intelligence via the self-amplifying development of artificial intelligence. The situated and embodied view of cognition rejects the notion that intelligence could arise in a closed 'brain-in-a-vat' system, because intelligence is rooted in a high-bandwidth, sensory-motor interaction with the outside world. Instead, it is proposed that superhuman intelligence can emerge only in a distributed fashion, in the form of a self-organizing network of humans, computers, (...)
     
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  9. Could a Brain in a Vat Self‐Refer?Rory Madden - 2013 - European Journal of Philosophy 21 (1):74-93.
    : Radical sceptical possibilities challenge the anti-realist view that truth consists in ideal rational acceptability. Putnam, as part of his defence of an anti-realist view, subjected the case of the brain in a vat to a semantic externalist treatment, which aimed to maintain the desired connection between truth and ideal rational acceptability. It is argued here that self-consciousness poses special problems for this externalist strategy. It is shown how, on a standard model of first-person reference, Putnam's brain in (...)
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  10.  11
    Do You Know That You Are Not a Brain in a Vat?Ned Markosian - 2014 - Logos and Episteme 5 (2):161-181.
    The topic of this paper is the familiar problem of skepticism about the external world. How can you know that you are not a brain in a vat being fooled byalien scientists? And if you can't know that, how can you know anything about the external world? The paper assumes Evidentialism as a theory about justification, and then argues that you are justified in believing that you are not a brain in a vat, in virtue of the fact (...)
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    Direct Realism and the Brain-in-a-Vat Argument.Michael Huemer - 2000 - Philosophical and Phenomenological Research 61 (2):397-413.
    The brain-in-a-vat argument for skepticism is best formulated, not using the closure principle, but using the "Preference Principle," which states that in order to be justified in believing H on the basis of E, one must have grounds for preferring H over each alternative explanation of E. When the argument is formulated this way, Dretske's and Klein's responses to it fail. However, the strengthened argument can be refuted using a direct realist account of perception. For the direct realist, refuting (...)
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  12.  1
    Brain in a Vat or Body in a World? Brainbound Versus Enactive Views of Experience.Evan Thompson & Diego Cosmelli - 2011 - Philosophical Topics 39 (1):163-180.
    We argue that the minimal biological requirements for consciousness include a living body, not just neuronal processes in the skull. Our argument proceeds by reconsidering the brain-in-a-vat thought experiment. Careful examination of this thought experiment indicates that the null hypothesis is that any adequately functional “vat” would be a surrogate body, that is, that the so-called vat would be no vat at all, but rather an embodied agent in the world. Thus, what the thought experiment actually shows is that (...)
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  13.  1
    Direct Realism and the Brain-in-a-Vat Argument.Huemer Michael - 2000 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 61 (2):397-413.
    The brain-in-a-vat argument for skepticism is best formulated, not using the closure principle, but using the “Preference Principle,” which states that in order to be justified in believing H on the basis of E, one must have grounds for preferring H over each alternative explanation of E. When the argument is formulated this way, Dretske’s and Klein’s responses to it fail. However, the strengthened argument can be refuted using a direct realist account of perception. For the direct realist, refuting (...)
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  14. The Brain in a Vat.Sanford C. Goldberg (ed.) - 2015 - Cambridge University Press.
    The scenario of the brain in a vat, first aired thirty-five years ago in Hilary Putnam's classic paper, has been deeply influential in philosophy of mind and language, epistemology, and metaphysics. This collection of new essays examines the scenario and its philosophical ramifications and applications, as well as the challenges which it has faced. The essays review historical applications of the brain-in-a-vat scenario and consider its impact on contemporary debates. They explore a diverse range of philosophical issues, from (...)
     
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  15. Against Brain-in-a-Vatism: On the Value of Virtual Reality.Jon Cogburn & Mark Silcox - 2014 - Philosophy and Technology 27 (4):561-579.
    The term “virtual reality” was first coined by Antonin Artaud to describe a value-adding characteristic of certain types of theatrical performances. The expression has more recently come to refer to a broad range of incipient digital technologies that many current philosophers regard as a serious threat to human autonomy and well-being. Their concerns, which are formulated most succinctly in “brain in a vat”-type thought experiments and in Robert Nozick's famous “experience machine” argument, reflect a fundamental misunderstanding of the way (...)
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  16. If I Am a Brain in a Vat, Then I Am Not a Brain in a Vat.Anthony Brueckner - 1992 - Mind 101 (401):123-128.
    Massimo Dell'Utri (1990) provides a reconstruction of Hilary Putnam's argument (1981, chapter 1) to show that the hypothesis that we are brains in a vat is self-refuting. I will explain why the argument Dell'Utri offers us is, on the face of it, quite problematic. Then I will provide a way out of the difficulty.
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  17. Phenomenal Intentionality and the Brain in a Vat.Terence E. Horgan, John L. Tienson & George Graham - 2004 - In Richard Schantz (ed.), The Externalist Challenge. De Gruyter.
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  18. A Moorean Response to Brain-in-a-Vat Scepticism.T. Black - 2002 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 80 (2):148 – 163.
  19.  32
    The Brain in a Vat.C. Gere - 2004 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 35 (2):219-225.
  20.  4
    The Brain in a Vat.Cathy Gere - 2004 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 35 (2):219-225.
  21.  1
    The Brain in a Vat in Cyberpunk: The Persistence of the Flesh.Dani Cavallaro - 2004 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 35 (2):287-305.
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  22.  68
    Brain in a Vat.John Pollock - 2009 - In Susan Schneider (ed.), Science Fiction and Philosophy: From Time Travel to Superintelligence. Wiley-Blackwell. pp. 17--19.
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  23. Why One Shouldn’T Make an Example of a Brain in a Vat.David Davies - 1997 - Analysis 57 (1):51–59.
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  24.  77
    The “Brain in a Vat” Argument.Lance P. Hickey - 2005 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  25.  61
    Could I Conceive Being a Brain in a Vat?John D. Collier - 1990 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 68 (4):413 – 419.
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  26.  5
    Why One Shouldn't Make an Example of a Brain in a Vat.D. Davies - 1997 - Analysis 57 (1):51-59.
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    Could I Conceive Being a Brain in a Vat? JOHN D. COLLIER This Article Accepts the Premises of Putnam's Notorious Argument That We Could Not Be a Brain in a Vat, and Argues That Even This Allows a Robust (Although Relativistic) Form of Realism. The Strategy is to Distin-Guish Between Our Ability to State a Theory and Our Ability to Conceive The.Tony Writings - 1990 - International Philosophical Quarterly 29 (2).
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  28.  16
    Thought in a Vat: Thinking Through Annie Cattrell.C. Gere - 2004 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 35 (2):415-436.
    This essay reflects on some aspects of the brain in a vat problem through a consideration of the work of the sculptor Annie Cattrell. Cattrell’s series of sculptures ‘Sense’ render in three dimensions MRI scans of different sensory functions in the human brain. These objects—which could be said to represent thought itself stilled and suspended in a transparent medium—make dramatically visible the doctrine of the localization of brain function. The essay argues that the brain in a (...)
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  29.  94
    Neither Mentioning 'Brains in a Vat' nor Mentioning Brains in a Vat Will Prove That We Are Not Brains in a Vat.Marian David - 1991 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 51 (4):891-896.
    In Reason, Truth, and History Hilary Putnam has presented an anti-skeptical argument purporting to prove that we are not brains in a vat. How exactly the argument goes is somewhat controversial. A number of competing "recon¬structions" have been proposed. They suffer from a defect which they share with what seems to be Putnam's own version of the argument. In this paper, I examine a very simple and rather natural reconstruction of the argument, one that does not employ any premises in (...)
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  30.  20
    In a Solitary Place: Raymond Roussel's Brain and the French Cult of Unreason.John Tresch - 2004 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 35 (2):307-332.
    French surrealist author Raymond Roussel’s novel Locus solus depicted a brain-in-a-vat apparatus in which the head of the revolutionary orator Georges Danton was reanimated and made to speak. This scene of mechanically-produced language echoes Roussel’s own method of quasi-mechanical literary production as presented in How I wrote certain of my books. Roussel’s work participates in a wider fascination in modern French thought with the fragile connection, or violent disjuncture, between the body and mind. This paper discusses a number of (...)
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  31. Consciousness Without Physical Basis. A Metaphysical Meditation on the Immortality of the Soul.Olaf L. Müller - manuscript
    Can we conceive of a mind without body? Does, for example, the idea of the soul's immortality make sense? Certain versions of materialism deny such questions; I shall try to prove that these versions of materialism cannot be right. They fail because they cannot account for the mental vocabulary from the language of brains in the vat. Envatted expressions such as "I think", "I believe", etc., do not have to be reinterpreted when we translate them to our language; they are (...)
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  32. Toward a Well-Innervated Philosophy of Mind (Chapter 4 of The Peripheral Mind).István Aranyosi - forthcoming - Oxford University Press.
    The “brain in a vat” thought experiment is presented and refuted by appeal to the intuitiveness of what the author informally calls “the eye for an eye principle”, namely: Conscious mental states typically involved in sensory processes can conceivably successfully be brought about by direct stimulation of the brain, and in all such cases the utilized stimulus field will be in the relevant sense equivalent to the actual PNS or part of it thereof. In the second section, four (...)
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  33.  67
    Can They Say What They Want? A Transcendental Argument Against Utilitarianism.Olaf L. Mueller - 2003 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 41 (2):241-259.
    Let us imagine an ideal ethical agent, i.e., an agent who (i) holds a certain ethical theory, (ii) has all factual knowledge needed for determining which action among those open to her is right and which is wrong, according to her theory, and who (iii) is ideally motivated to really do whatever her ethical theory demands her to do. If we grant that the notions of omniscience and ideal motivation both make sense, we may ask: Could there possibly be an (...)
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    Mind-Upload. The Ultimate Challenge to the Embodied Mind Theory.Massimiliano Lorenzo Cappuccio - 2017 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 16 (3):425-448.
    The ‘Mind-Upload’ hypothesis, a radical version of the Brain-in-a-Vat thought experiment, asserts that a whole mind can safely be transferred from a brain to a digital device, after being exactly encoded into substrate independent informational patterns. Prima facie, MU seems the philosophical archenemy of the Embodied Mind theory, which understands embodiment as a necessary and constitutive condition for the existence of a mind and its functions. In truth, whether and why MU and EM are ultimately incompatible is unobvious. (...)
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  35.  21
    The Failure of Frances’s Live Skepticism.Susan Feldman - 2016 - International Journal for the Study of Skepticism 6 (4):385-396.
    _ Source: _Page Count 12 In his _Scepticism Comes Alive_, Bryan Frances contends that his “live skepticism” poses a genuine challenge to claims of knowledge in a way that classic “brain-in-a-vat” skepticism does not. This is mistaken. In this paper, I argue that Frances’s live skepticism dies on the horns of a dilemma: if we interpret a key premise in Frances’s skeptical argument template sociologically, then it undercuts itself, showing that there is no reason to accept it and the (...)
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  36.  22
    The Failure of Frances’s Live Skepticism.Susan Feldman - forthcoming - International Journal for the Study of Skepticism.
    _ Source: _Page Count 12 In his _Scepticism Comes Alive_, Bryan Frances contends that his “live skepticism” poses a genuine challenge to claims of knowledge in a way that classic “brain-in-a-vat” skepticism does not. This is mistaken. In this paper, I argue that Frances’s live skepticism dies on the horns of a dilemma: if we interpret a key premise in Frances’s skeptical argument template sociologically, then it undercuts itself, showing that there is no reason to accept it and the (...)
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    The (Un)Holy Grail of Epistemology.Paweł J. Zięba - 2015 - Organon F: Medzinárodný Časopis Pre Analytickú Filozofiu 22 (1):21-33.
    As formulated by Duncan Pritchard and John McDowell, epistemological disjunctivism is the claim that perceptual experience can provide the subject with epistemic justification that is reflectively accessible and externally grounded at the same time. Pritchard calls this thesis ‘the holy grail of epistemology’, since it reconciles two traditionally rival theories of justification, namely epistemic internalism and epistemic externalism. The main objection against epistemological disjunctivism thus understood is that it does not do justice to the well-known internalist intuitions expressed in The (...)
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  38.  75
    The Underdetermination Argument for Brain-in-the-Vat Scepticism.A. H. Goldman - 2007 - Analysis 67 (1):32-36.
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  39.  17
    Brain in the Vat.Alison Reiheld & Rory Kraft - 2008 - Questions 8:4-4.
    A summary and brief discussion of the pedagogical usefulness of Hilary Putnam’s classic thought experiment from Reason, Truth, and History.
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  40.  1
    Brain in the Vat.Alison Reiheld & Rory Kraft - 2008 - Questions 8:4-4.
    A summary and brief discussion of the pedagogical usefulness of Hilary Putnam’s classic thought experiment from Reason, Truth, and History.
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  41. Brains in a Vat.Anthony L. Brueckner - 1986 - Journal of Philosophy 83 (3):148-167.
    In chapter 1 of Reason, Truth, and History, Hilary Putnam argues from some plausible assumptions about the nature of reference to the conclusion that it is not possible that all sentient creatures are brains in a vat. If this argument is successful, it seemingly refutes an updated form of Cartesian skepticism concerning knowledge of physical objects. In this paper, I will state what I take to be the most promising interpretation of Putnam's argument. My reconstructed argument differs from an argument (...)
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  42. Is Our Brain Hardwired to Produce God, or is Our Brain Hardwired to Perceive God? A Systematic Review on the Role of the Brain in Mediating Religious Experience.Alexander A. Fingelkurts & Andrew A. Fingelkurts - 2009 - Cognitive Processing 10 (4):293-326.
    To figure out whether the main empirical question “Is our brain hardwired to believe in and produce God, or is our brain hardwired to perceive and experience God?” is answered, this paper presents systematic critical review of the positions, arguments and controversies of each side of the neuroscientific-theological debate and puts forward an integral view where the human is seen as a psycho-somatic entity consisting of the multiple levels and dimensions of human existence (physical, biological, psychological, and spiritual (...)
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  43. Explanatory Completeness and Idealization in Large Brain Simulations: A Mechanistic Perspective.Marcin Miłkowski - 2016 - Synthese 193 (5):1457-1478.
    The claim defended in the paper is that the mechanistic account of explanation can easily embrace idealization in big-scale brain simulations, and that only causally relevant detail should be present in explanatory models. The claim is illustrated with two methodologically different models: Blue Brain, used for particular simulations of the cortical column in hybrid models, and Eliasmith’s SPAUN model that is both biologically realistic and able to explain eight different tasks. By drawing on the mechanistic theory of computational (...)
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  44.  46
    The New Evil Demon and the Devil in the Details.Mikkel Gerken - forthcoming - In The Factive Turn in Epistemology. Cambridge University Press.
    I will argue that cases of massive deception, such as New Evil Demon cases, as well as one-off cases of local deception present challenges to views according to which epistemic reasons, epistemic warrant, epistemic rationality or epistemic norms are factive. In doing so, I will argue is that proponents of a factive turn in epistemology should observe important distinctions between what are often simply referred to as ‘bad cases.’ Recognizing epistemologically significant differences between deception cases raises serious challenges for those (...)
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  45.  36
    The Brain in the Vat and the Question of Metaphysical Realism.J. J. C. Smart - 2004 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 35 (2):237-247.
    This article indicates some ways in which the fantasy of the brain in the vat has been used in thought experiments to discuss important philosophical problems. The first has to do with scepticism about the external world. The second has to do with Hilary Putnam’s arguments for the indeterminacy of reference and his rejection of metaphysical realism. The third issue to which the brain in the vat is relevant has to do with the difference between broad and narrow (...)
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  46. The Brain in the Vat and the Question of Metaphysical Realism.J. Smart - 2003 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 35 (2):237-247.
    This article indicates some ways in which the fantasy of the brain in the vat has been used in thought experiments to discuss important philosophical problems. The first has to do with scepticism about the external world. The second has to do with Hilary Putnam’s arguments for the indeterminacy of reference and his rejection of metaphysical realism. The third issue to which the brain in the vat is relevant has to do with the difference between broad and narrow (...)
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  47.  71
    Defending the Ignorance View of Sceptical Scenarios.Tim Kraft - 2015 - International Journal for the Study of Skepticism 5 (4):269-295.
    What is the role of sceptical scenarios—dreams, evil demons, brains in a vat—in scep- tical arguments? According to the error view, sceptical scenarios illustrate the possibil- ity of massive falsity in one’s beliefs, whereas according to the ignorance view, they illustrate the possibility of massive ignorance not necessarily due to falsity. In this paper, the ignorance view is defended by surveying the arguments in favour of it and by replying to two pressing objections against it. According to the first objection, (...)
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  48.  67
    Consciousness as a Phenomenon in the Operational Architectonics of Brain Organization: Criticality and Self-Organization Considerations.Andrew A. Fingelkurts, Alexander A. Fingelkurts & Carlos F. H. Neves - 2013 - Chaos, Solitons and Fractals 55:13-31.
    In this paper we aim to show that phenomenal consciousness is realized by a particular level of brain operational organization and that understanding human consciousness requires a description of the laws of the immediately underlying neural collective phenomena, the nested hierarchy of electromagnetic fields of brain activity – operational architectonics. We argue that the subjective mental reality and the objective neurobiological reality, although seemingly worlds apart, are intimately connected along a unified metastable continuum and are both guided by (...)
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  49.  64
    Brains in a Vat, Subjectivity, and the Causal Theory of Reference.Kirk Ludwig - 1992 - Journal of Philosophical Research 17:313-345.
    This paper evaluates Putnam’s argument in the first chapter of Reason, Truth and History, for the claim that we can know that we are not brains in a vat (of a certain sort). A widespread response to Putnam’s argument has been that if it were successful not only the world but the meanings of our words (and consequently our thoughts) would be beyond the pale of knowledge, because a causal theory of reference is not compatible with our having knowledge of (...)
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  50.  12
    Internal Realism, Metaphysical Realism, and Brains in a Vat.Gábor Formi - 1996 - Dialectica 50 (4):259-274.
    The paper explores the relationship between skepticism on the one hand and the metaphysical realist and the internal realist conceptions of truth on the other. After a brief description of the metaphysical realist and the internal realist positions, it is argued that the former but not the latter is committed to an important sort of skepticism, namely, that we might be wrong about practically everything at the same time. First an abstract argument is presented to this effect, then the issue (...)
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