23 found
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  1. Combining Minds: How to Think about Composite Subjectivity.Luke Roelofs - 2019 - New York, USA: Oxford University Press.
    This book explores a neglected philosophical question: How do groups of interacting minds relate to singular minds? Could several of us, by organizing ourselves the right way, constitute a single conscious mind that contains our minds as parts? And could each of us have been, all along, a group of mental parts in close cooperation? Scientific progress seems to be slowly revealing that all the different physical objects around us are, at root, just a matter of the right parts put (...)
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  2. The unity of consciousness, within subjects and between subjects.Luke Roelofs - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (12):3199-3221.
    The unity of consciousness has so far been studied only as a relation holding among the many experiences of a single subject. I investigate whether this relation could hold between the experiences of distinct subjects, considering three major arguments against the possibility of such ‘between-subjects unity’. The first argument, based on the popular idea that unity implies subsumption by a composite experience, can be deflected by allowing for limited forms of ‘experience-sharing’, in which the same token experience belongs to more (...)
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  3. Sentientism, Motivation, and Philosophical Vulcans.Luke Roelofs - 2023 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 104 (2):301-323.
    If moral status depends on the capacity for consciousness, what kind of consciousness matters exactly? Two popular answers are that any kind of consciousness matters (Broad Sentientism), and that what matters is the capacity for pleasure and suffering (Narrow Sentientism). I argue that the broad answer is too broad, while the narrow answer is likely too narrow, as Chalmers has recently argued by appeal to ‘philosophical Vulcans’. I defend a middle position, Motivational Sentientism, on which what matters is motivating consciousness: (...)
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  4. Longings in Limbo: A New Defence of I-Desires.Luke Roelofs - 2023 - Erkenntnis 88 (8):3331-3355.
    This paper responds to two arguments that have been offered against the positing of ‘i-desires’, imaginative counterparts of desire supposedly involved in fiction, pretence, and mindreading. The Introspection Argument asks why, if there are both i-desires and desires, the distinction is so unfamiliar and hard to draw, unlike the relatively clear distinctions between perception and mental imagery, or belief and belief-like imagining. The Accountability Argument asks how it can make sense to treat merely imaginative states as revealing of someone’s psychology, (...)
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  5. Phenomenal Blending and the Palette Problem.Luke Roelofs - 2014 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 3 (1):59-70.
    I discuss the apparent discrepancy between the qualitative diversity of consciousness and the relative qualitative homogeneity of the brain's basic constituents, a discrepancy that has been raised as a problem for identity theorists by Maxwell and Lockwood (as one element of the ‘grain problem’), and more recently as a problem for panpsychists (under the heading of ‘the palette problem’). The challenge posed to panpsychists by this discrepancy is to make sense of how a relatively small ‘palette’ of basic qualities could (...)
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  6. Combining Minds: A Defence of the Possibility of Experiential Combination.Luke Roelofs - 2015 - Dissertation, University of Toronto
    This thesis explores the possibility of composite consciousness: phenomenally conscious states belonging to a composite being in virtue of the consciousness of, and relations among, its parts. We have no trouble accepting that a composite being has physical properties entirely in virtue of the physical properties of, and relations among, its parts. But a long­standing intuition holds that consciousness is different: my consciousness cannot be understood as a complex of interacting component consciousnesses belonging to parts of me. I ask why: (...)
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  7. Panpsychism, intuitions, and the great chain of being.Luke Roelofs & Jed Buchanan - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (11):2991-3017.
    Some philosophical theories of consciousness imply consciousness in things we would never intuitively think are conscious—most notably, panpsychism implies that consciousness is pervasive, even outside complex brains. Is this a reductio ab absurdum for such theories, or does it show that we should reject our original intuitions? To understand the stakes of this question as clearly as possible, we analyse the structured pattern of intuitions that panpsychism conflicts with. We consider a variety of ways that the tension between this intuition (...)
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  8. Why Imagining Requires Content: A Reply to a Reply to an Objection to Radical Enactive Cognition.Luke Roelofs - 2018 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 7 (4):246-254.
    ‘Radical enactivism’ (Hutto and Myin 2013, 2017) eschews representational content for all ‘basic’ mental activities. Critics have argued that this view cannot make sense of the workings of the imagination. In their recent book (2017), Hutto and Myin respond to these critics, arguing that some imaginings can be understood without attributing them any representational content. Their response relies on the claim that a system can exploit a structural isomorphism between two things without either of those things being a semantically evaluable (...)
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  9. What are the Dimensions of the Conscious Field?Luke Roelofs - 2014 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 21 (7-8):88-104.
    I analyse the meaning of a popular idiom among consciousness researchers, in which an individual's consciousness is described as a 'field'. I consider some of the contexts where this idea appears, in particular discussions of attention and the unity of consciousness. In neither case, I argue, do authors provide the resources to cash out all the implications of field-talk: in particular, they do not give sense to the idea of conscious elements being arrayed along multiple dimensions. I suggest ways to (...)
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  10. Seeing the Invisible: How to Perceive, Imagine, and Infer the Minds of Others.Luke Roelofs - 2017 - Erkenntnis 83 (2):205-229.
    The psychology and phenomenology of our knowledge of other minds is not well captured either by describing it simply as perception, nor by describing it simply as inference. A better description, I argue, is that our knowledge of other minds involves both through ‘perceptual co-presentation’, in which we experience objects as having aspects that are not revealed. This allows us to say that we perceive other minds, but perceive them as private, i.e. imperceptible, just as we routinely perceive aspects of (...)
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  11. Introduction to Special Issue on “Enactivism, Representationalism, and Predictive Processing”.Krzysztof Dołęga, Luke Roelofs & Tobias Schlicht - 2018 - Philosophical Explorations 21 (2):179-186.
    The papers in this special issue make important contributions to a longstanding debate about how we should conceive of and explain mental phenomena. In other words, they make a case about the best philosophical paradigm for cognitive science. The two main competing approaches, hotly debated for several decades, are representationalism and enactivism. However, recent developments in disciplines such as machine learning and computational neuroscience have fostered a proliferation of intermediate approaches, leading to the emergence of completely new positions, in particular (...)
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  12. The Compatibility of the Structure-and-Dynamics Argument and Phenomenal Functionalism about Space.Luke Roelofs - 2018 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 99 (S1):44-52.
    Chalmers (2002) argues against physicalism in part using the premise that no truth about consciousness can be deduced a priori from any set of purely structural truths. Chalmers (2012) elaborates a detailed definition of what it is for a truth to be structural, which turns out to include spatiotemporal truths. But Chalmers (2012) then proposes to define spatiotemporal terms by reference to their role in causing spatial and temporal experiences. Stoljar (2015) and Ebbers (Ms) argue that this definition of spatiotemporal (...)
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  13.  48
    Implicit Coordination: Acting Quasi-Jointly on Implicit Shared Intentions.Luke Roelofs & Judith Martens - 2018 - Journal of Social Ontology 4 (2):93-120.
    We identify a social phenomenon in which large numbers of people seem to work towards a shared goal without explicitly trying to do so. We argue that this phenomenon – implicit coordination – is best understood as a form of joint agency differing from the forms most commonly discussed in the literature in the same way that individual actions driven by “explicit” intentions (those available for reflection and report) differ from individual actions driven by “implicit” intentions (those not thus available). (...)
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  14. No Such Thing as Too Many Minds.Luke Roelofs - 2024 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 102 (1):131-146.
    Many philosophical views have the surprising implication that, within the boundaries of each human being, there is not just one mind, but many: anywhere from two (the person and their brain, or the person and their body) to trillions (each of the nearly-entirely-overlapping precise entities generated by the Problem of the Many). This is often treated as absurd, a problem of ‘Too Many Minds’, which we must find ways to avoid. It is often thought specifically absurd to allow such a (...)
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  15.  6
    The Compatibility of the Structure‐and‐Dynamics Argument and Phenomenal Functionalism about Space.Luke Roelofs - 2017 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 99 (4):44-52.
    Chalmers argues against physicalism using the premise that no truth about consciousness is deducible a priori from purely structural truths, and later defines what it is for a truth to be structural, which turns out to include spatiotemporal truths. But Chalmers then defines spatiotemporal terms by reference to their role in causing spatiotemporal experiences. Stoljar and Ebbers argue that these definitions allow for the trivial falsification of Chalmers premise about structure and consciousness. I show that this result can be avoided (...)
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  16. Rational Agency without Self‐Knowledge: Could ‘We’ Replace ‘I’?Luke Roelofs - 2017 - Dialectica 71 (1):3-33.
    It has been claimed that we need singular self-knowledge to function properly as rational agents. I argue that this is not strictly true: agents in certain relations could dispense with singular self-knowledge and instead rely on plural self-knowledge. In defending the possibility of this kind of ‘selfless agent’, I thereby defend the possibility of a certain kind of ‘seamless’ collective agency; agency in a group of agents who have no singular self-knowledge, who do not know which member of the group (...)
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  17. Dennettian Panpsychism: Multiple Drafts, All of Them Conscious.Luke Roelofs - 2021 - Acta Analytica (3):1-18.
    I explore some surprising convergences between apparently opposite theories of consciousness—panpsychism and eliminativism. I outline what a ‘Dennettian panpsychism’ might look like, and consider some of the challenging but fertile questions it raises about determinacy, holism, and subjecthood.What unites constitutive panpsychism and the multiple drafts model is that both present the unitary consciousness we can report as resting atop a multiplicity of independent processes; both reject as misguided the search for a definite threshold between processing that is truly conscious and (...)
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  18. There is No Biotic Community.Luke Roelofs - 2011 - Environmental Philosophy 8 (2):69-94.
    It has been suggested that the biosphere and its component ecological systems be thought of as “communities”; this is often invoked as a reason to attribute it moral significance. I first disambiguate this claim, distinguishing the purely moral, social-factual, and biological-factual senses of this term, as well as distinguishing primary from derived meanings, drawing on material from philosophy, sociology, psychology, and ecology. I then argue that the ethically important sense of the term is one that does not apply to ecological (...)
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  19.  35
    Dennettian Panpsychism: Multiple Drafts, All of Them Conscious.Luke Roelofs - 2021 - Acta Analytica 37 (3):323-340.
    I explore some surprising convergences between apparently opposite theories of consciousness—panpsychism and eliminativism. I outline what a ‘Dennettian panpsychism’ might look like, and consider some of the challenging but fertile questions it raises about determinacy, holism, and subjecthood.What unites constitutive panpsychism and the multiple drafts model is that both present the unitary consciousness we can report as resting atop a multiplicity of independent processes; both reject as misguided the search for a definite threshold between processing that is truly conscious and (...)
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    Consciousness, Revelation, and Confusion.Luke Roelofs - 2020 - Dialectica 74 (1):61-93.
    Critics have charged constitutive panpsychism with inconsistency. Panpsychists reject physicalism for its seeming inability to explain consciousness. In making this argument, they commit themselves to the idea of "revelation": that we know, in some especially direct way, the nature of consciousness. Yet they then attribute properties to ourconsciousness---like being constituted out of trillions of simpler experiential parts---that conflict with how it seems introspectively. This seems to pose a dilemma: either revelation is false, and physicalism remains intact, or revelation is true, (...)
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  21. Simulation trouble and gender trouble.Luke Roelofs - forthcoming - Philosophical Explorations:1-13.
    Is it impossible to imaginatively simulate what it’s like to be someone with a different gender experience – to understand them empathically? Or is it simply difficult, a challenge requiring effort and dedication? I first distinguish three different sorts of obstacle to empathic understanding that are sometimes discussed: Missing Ingredient problems, Awkward Combination Problems, and Inappropriate Background Problems. I then argue that, although all three should be taken seriously, there is no clear reason to think that any of them are (...)
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  22. Panpsychism: Contemporary perspectives Godehard Brüntrup and Ludwig jaskolla, eds. New York: Oxford university press, 2017, 414 pp., $78.00. [REVIEW]Luke Roelofs - 2018 - Dialogue 57 (3):639-641.
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  23.  85
    Compassionate Moral Realism: Marshall, Colin, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018, pp. xiii + 265, £45 (hardback). [REVIEW]Luke Roelofs - 2019 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 97 (4):839-842.
    Volume 97, Issue 4, December 2019, Page 839-842.
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