Results for 'physicalism'

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  1. Emergent Truth and a Blind Spot.an Argument Against Physicalism - 2006 - Facta Philosophica: Internazionale Zeitschrift für Gegenwartsphilosophie: International Journal for Contemporary Philosophy 8:79-101.
     
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  2. Index of volume 79, 2001.Stephen Buckle, Miracles Marvels, Mundane Order, Temporal Solipsism, Robert Kirk, Nonreductive Physicalism, Strict Implication, Donald Mertz Individuation, Instance Ontology & Dale E. Miller - 2001 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 79 (4):594-596.
     
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  3. Physicalism.Daniel Stoljar - 2010 - New York: Routledge.
    Physicalism, the thesis that everything is physical, is one of the most controversial problems in philosophy. Its adherents argue that there is no more important doctrine in philosophy, whilst its opponents claim that its role is greatly exaggerated. In this superb introduction to the problem Daniel Stoljar focuses on three fundamental questions: the interpretation, truth and philosophical significance of physicalism. In answering these questions he covers the following key topics: -/- (i)A brief history of physicalism and its (...)
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  4. What Physicalism Could Be.Michael J. Raven - forthcoming - Analytic Philosophy.
    The physicalist credo is that the world is physical. But some phenomena, such as minds, morals, and mathematics, appear to be nonphysical. While an uncompromising physicalism would reject these, a conciliatory physicalism needn’t if it can account for them in terms of an underlying physical basis. Any such account must refer to the nonphysical. But won’t this unavoidable reference to the nonphysical conflict with the physicalist credo? This essay aims to clarify this problem and introduce a novel solution (...)
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  5. Physicalism and its Discontents.Carl Gillett & Barry Loewer (eds.) - 2001 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
    Physicalism, a topic that has been central to modern philosophy of mind and metaphysics, is the philosophical view that everything in the space-time world is ultimately physical. The physicalist will claim that all facts about the mind and the mental are physical facts and deny the existence of mental events and state insofar as these are thought of as independent of physical things, events and states. This collection of essays, first published in 2001, offers a series of perspectives on (...)
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    Redefining Physicalism.Guy Dove - 2018 - Topoi 37 (3):513-522.
    Philosophers have traditionally treated physicalism as an empirically informed metaphysical thesis. This approach faces a well-known problem often referred to as Hempel’s dilemma: formulations of physicalism tend to be either false or indeterminate. The generally preferred strategy to address this problem involves an appeal to a hypothetical complete and ideal physical theory. After demonstrating that this strategy is not viable, I argue that we should redefine physicalism as an interdisciplinary research program seeking to explain the mental in (...)
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  7. Physicalism and Mental Causation: The Metaphysics of Mind and Action.Sven Walter & Heinz-Dieter Heckmann (eds.) - 2003 - Imprint Academic.
  8. A Physicalist Manifesto: Thoroughly Modern Materialism.Andrew Melnyk - 2003 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
    A Physicalist Manifesto is a full treatment of the comprehensive physicalist view that, in some important sense, everything is physical. Andrew Melnyk argues that the view is best formulated by appeal to a carefully worked-out notion of realization, rather than supervenience; that, so formulated, physicalism must be importantly reductionist; that it need not repudiate causal and explanatory claims framed in non-physical language; and that it has the a posteriori epistemic status of a broad-scope scientific hypothesis. Two concluding chapters argue (...)
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  9. Physicalism, Emergence and Downward Causation.Richard J. Campbell & Mark H. Bickhard - 2011 - Axiomathes 21 (1):33-56.
    The development of a defensible and fecund notion of emergence has been dogged by a number of threshold issues neatly highlighted in a recent paper by Jaegwon Kim. We argue that physicalist assumptions confuse and vitiate the whole project. In particular, his contention that emergence entails supervenience is contradicted by his own argument that the ‘microstructure’ of an object belongs to the whole object, not to its constituents. And his argument against the possibility of downward causation is question-begging and makes (...)
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  10. Fundamentality physicalism.Gabriel Oak Rabin - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy (1):77-116.
    ABSTRACT This essay has three goals. The first is to introduce the notion of fundamentality and to argue that physicalism can usefully be conceived of as a thesis about fundamentality. The second is to argue for the advantages of fundamentality physicalism over modal formulations and that fundamentality physicalism is what many who endorse modal formulations of physicalism had in mind all along. Third, I describe what I take to be the main obstacle for a fundamentality-oriented formulation (...)
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  11. Physicalism as an attitude.Alyssa Ney - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 138 (1):1 - 15.
    It is widely noted that physicalism, taken as the doctrine that the world contains just what physics says it contains, faces a dilemma which, some like Tim Crane and D.H. Mellor have argued, shows that “physicalism is the wrong answer to an essentially trivial question”. I argue that both problematic horns of this dilemma drop out if one takes physicalism not to be a doctrine of the kind that might be true, false, or trivial, but instead an (...)
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  12. Flat Physicalism: some implications.Orly Shenker - 2017 - Iyyun 66:211-225.
    Flat Physicalism is a theory of through and through type reductive physicalism, understood in light of recent results in the conceptual foundations of physics. In Flat Physicalism, as in physics, so-called "high level" concepts and laws are nothing but partial descriptions of the complete states of affairs of the universe. "Flat physicalism" generalizes this idea, to form a reductive picture in which there is no room for levels, neither explanatory nor ontological. The paper explains how phenomena (...)
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  13. Pluralistic physicalism and the causal exclusion argument.Markus I. Eronen - 2012 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 2 (2):219-232.
    There is a growing consensus among philosophers of science that scientific endeavors of understanding the human mind or the brain exhibit explanatory pluralism. Relatedly, several philosophers have in recent years defended an interventionist approach to causation that leads to a kind of causal pluralism. In this paper, I explore the consequences of these recent developments in philosophy of science for some of the central debates in philosophy of mind. First, I argue that if we adopt explanatory pluralism and the interventionist (...)
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  14. Naturalism and Physicalism.D. Gene Witmer - 2012 - In Robert Barnard & Neil Manson (eds.), Continuum Companion to Metaphysics. Continuum Publishing. pp. 90-120.
    A substantial guide providing an overview of both physicalism and metaphysical naturalism, reviewing both questions of formulation and justification for both doctrines. Includes a diagnostic strategy for understanding talk of naturalism as a metaphysical thesis.
     
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  15. Physicalist theories of color.Paul A. Boghossian & J. David Velleman - 1991 - Philosophical Review 100 (January):67-106.
    The dispute between realists about color and anti-realists is actually a dispute about the nature of color properties. The disputants do not disagree over what material objects are like. Rather, they disagree over whether any of the uncontroversial facts about material objects--their powers to cause visual experiences, their dispositions to reflect incident light, their atomic makeup, and so on--amount to their having colors. The disagreement is thus about which properties colors are and, in particular, whether colors are any of the (...)
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  16. Nonreductive physicalism and the limits of the exclusion principle.Christian List & Peter Menzies - 2009 - Journal of Philosophy 106 (9):475-502.
    It is often argued that higher-level special-science properties cannot be causally efficacious since the lower-level physical properties on which they supervene are doing all the causal work. This claim is usually derived from an exclusion principle stating that if a higher-level property F supervenes on a physical property F* that is causally sufficient for a property G, then F cannot cause G. We employ an account of causation as difference-making to show that the truth or falsity of this principle is (...)
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  17. Physicalism and the Identity of Identity Theories.Samuel Z. Elgin - 2020 - Erkenntnis 87 (1):161-180.
    It is often said that there are two varieties of identity theory. Type-identity theorists interpret physicalism as the claim that every property is identical to a physical property, while token-identity theorists interpret it as the claim that every particular is identical to a physical particular. The aim of this paper is to undermine the distinction between the two. Drawing on recent work connecting generalized identity to truth-maker semantics, I demonstrate that these interpretations are logically equivalent. I then argue that (...)
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  18. Physicalism Requires Functionalism: A New Formulation and Defense of the Via Negativa.Justin Tiehen - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 93 (1):3-24.
    How should ‘the physical’ be defined for the purpose of formulating physicalism? In this paper I defend a version of the via negativa according to which a property is physical just in case it is neither fundamentally mental nor possibly realized by a fundamentally mental property. The guiding idea is that physicalism requires functionalism, and thus that being a type identity theorist requires being a realizer-functionalist. In §1 I motivate my approach partly by arguing against Jessica Wilson's no (...)
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  19. Physicalism.Daniel Stoljar - 2015 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Physicalism is the thesis that everything is physical, or as contemporary philosophers sometimes put it, that everything supervenes on, or is necessitated by, the physical. The thesis is usually intended as a metaphysical thesis, parallel to the thesis attributed to the ancient Greek philosopher Thales, that everything is water, or the idealism of the 18th Century philosopher Berkeley, that everything is mental. The general idea is that the nature of the actual world (i.e. the universe and everything in it) (...)
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  20. Physicalism.Amanda Bryant - 2020 - In Michael J. Raven (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Metaphysical Grounding. New York: Routledge. pp. 484-500.
    This chapter considers potential applications of grounding to the formulation of physicalism. I begin with an overview of competing conceptions of the physical and of physicalism. I then consider whether grounding physicalism overcomes well-known and seemingly fatal problems with supervenience physicalism. I conclude that while grounding physicalism improves upon supervenience physicalism in certain respects, it arguably falls victim to some of the same difficulties.
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  21. Physicalism and Phenomenal Concepts.Erhan Demircioglu - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 165 (1):257-277.
    Frank Jackson’s famous Knowledge Argument moves from the premise that complete physical knowledge is not complete knowledge about experiences to the falsity of physicalism. In recent years, a consensus has emerged that the credibility of this and other well-known anti-physicalist arguments can be undermined by allowing that we possess a special category of concepts of experiences, phenomenal concepts, which are conceptually independent from physical/functional concepts. It is held by a large number of philosophers that since the conceptual independence of (...)
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  22. Physicalism and phenomenal concepts.Daniel Stoljar - 2005 - Mind and Language 20 (2):296-302.
    A phenomenal concept is the concept of a particular type of sensory or perceptual experience, where the notion of experience is understood phenomenologically. A recent and increasingly influential idea in philosophy of mind suggests that reflection on these concepts will play a major role in the debate about conscious experience, and in particular in the defense of physicalism, the thesis that psychological truths supervene on physical truths. According to this idea—I call it the phenomenal concept strategy —phenomenal concepts are (...)
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  23. Physicalism, Closure, and the Structure of Causal Arguments for Physicalism: A Naturalistic Formulation of the Physical.Hamed Bikaraan-Behesht - 2022 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 13 (4):1081-1096.
    Physicalism is the idea that everything either is physical or is nothing over and above the physical. For this formulation of physicalism to have determinate content, it should be identified what the “physical” refers to; i.e. the body problem. Some other closely related theses, especially the ones employed in the causal arguments for different versions of physicalism, and more especially the causal closure thesis, are also subject to the body problem. In this paper, I do two things. (...)
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  24. Flat Physicalism.Meir Hemmo & Orly Shenker - 2021 - Theoria 88 (4):743-764.
    This paper describes a version of type identity physicalism, which we call Flat Physicalism, and shows how it meets several objections often raised against identity theories. This identity theory is informed by recent results in the conceptual foundations of physics, and in particular clar- ifies the notion of ‘physical kinds’ in light of a conceptual analysis of the paradigmatic case of reducing thermody- namics to statistical mechanics. We show how Flat Physi- calism is compatible with the appearance of (...)
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  25. Physicalism, the philosophical foundations.Jeffrey Stephen Poland - 1994 - New York: Oxford University Press.
    Physicalism is a program for building a unified system of knowledge about the world on the basis of the view that everything is a manifestation of the physical aspects of existence. Jeffrey Poland presents a systematic and comprehensive exploration of the philosophical foundations of this program. He investigates the core ideas, motivating values, and presuppositions of physicalism; the constraints upon an adequate formulation of physicalist doctrine; the epistemological and modal status, the scope, and the methodological roles of physicalist (...)
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    Physicalism: A Hypothetical Future.Vicente Aboites - 2024 - Open Journal of Philosophy 14 (1):152-160.
    Considering the most recent advances in artificial intelligence and biomechanics, a hypothetical future of physicalism is explored. It is concluded that a rational and sensible extrapolation of present and expected future advances in those two areas will have vast consequences in the physicalist view. In particular, it is also argued that consciousness cannot be defined in a simple general manner, but only understood through the observable and behavioural actions of humans or sufficiently advanced robots, which may be, at some (...)
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  27. Physicalism, Infinite Decomposition, and Constitution.Torin Alter, Sam Coleman & Robert J. Howell - 2022 - Erkenntnis (4):1735-1744.
    How could physicalism be true of a world in which there are no fundamental physical phenomena? A familiar answer, due to Barbara Gail Montero and others, is that physicalism could be true of such a world if that world does not contain an infinite descent of mentality. Christopher Devlin Brown has produced a counterexample to that solution. We show how to modify the solution to accommodate Brown’s example: physicalism could be true of a world without fundamental physical (...)
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  28. Physicalism, or Something Near Enough.Jaegwon Kim - 2005 - Princeton University Press.
  29. Colour Physicalism, Naïve Realism, and the Argument from Structure.Keith Allen - 2015 - Minds and Machines 25 (2):193-212.
    Colours appear to instantiate a number of structural properties: for instance, they stand in distinctive relations of similarity and difference, and admit of a fundamental distinction into unique and binary. Accounting for these structural properties is often taken to present a serious problem for physicalist theories of colour. This paper argues that a prominent attempt by Byrne and Hilbert to account for the structural properties of the colours, consistent with the claim that colours are types of surface spectral reflectance, is (...)
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  30. Nonreductive physicalism and the causal powers of the mental.Randolph Clarke - 1999 - Erkenntnis 51 (2-3):295-322.
    Nonreductive physicalism is currently one of the most widely held views about the world in general and about the status of the mental in particular. However, the view has recently faced a series of powerful criticisms from, among others, Jaegwon Kim. In several papers, Kim has argued that the nonreductivist's view of the mental is an unstable position, one harboring contradictions that push it either to reductivism or to eliminativism. The problems arise, Kim maintains, when we consider the causal (...)
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  31. Physicalism decomposed.A. Huttemann & D. Papineau - 2005 - Analysis 65 (1):33-39.
    In this paper we distinguish two issues that are often run together in discussions about physicalism. The first issue concerns levels. How do entities picked out by non-physical terminology, such as biological or psychological terminology, relate to physical entities? Are the former identical to, or metaphysically supervenient on, the latter? The second issue concerns physical parts and wholes. How do macroscopic physical entities relate to their microscopic parts? Are the former generally determined by the latter? We argue that views (...)
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  32. Physicalism Deconstructed: Levels of Reality and the Mind–Body Problem.Kevin Morris - 2018 - New York, NY, USA: Cambridge University Press.
    How should thought and consciousness be understood within a view of the world as being through-and-through physical? Many philosophers have proposed non-reductive, levels-based positions, according to which the physical domain is fundamental, while thought and consciousness are higher-level processes, dependent on and determined by physical processes. In this book, Kevin Morris's careful philosophical and historical critique shows that it is very difficult to make good metaphysical sense of this idea - notions like supervenience, physical realization, and grounding all fail to (...)
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  33. Russellian Physicalism, Bare Structure, and Swapped Inscrutables.Kevin Morris - 2016 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 23 (9-10):180-198.
    This paper discusses and evaluates a recent argument for the conclusion that an attractive variety of Russellian monism ought to be regarded as a form of physicalism. According to this line of thought, if the Russellian’s “inscrutable” properties are held to ground not only experience, but also the physical structure of the world—and in this sense are not “experience-specific”—they thereby have an unproblematic place in physicalist metaphysics. I argue, in contrast, that there can be a sense in which the (...)
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  34. Physicalism and sparse ontology.Kelly Trogdon - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 143 (2):147-165.
    Discussion of reductive and non-reductive physicalism formulated in a priority monist framework.
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  35. Physicalism and the sortalist conception of objects.Jonah Goldwater - 2018 - Synthese 195 (12):5497-5519.
    The central claim of this paper is that the Aristotelian metaphysics of objects is incompatible with physicalism. This includes the contemporary variant of Aristotelianism I call ‘sortalism’. The core reason is that an object’s identity as an instance of a (natural) kind, as well as its consequent persistence conditions, is neither physically fundamental nor determined by what is physically fundamental. The argument for the latter appeals to what is commonly known as ‘the grounding problem’; in particular I argue that (...)
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  36. Physicalism.Justin Tiehen - 2018 - Analysis 78 (3):537-551.
    As a first pass, physicalism is the doctrine that there is nothing over and above the physical. Much recent philosophical work has been devoted to spelling out what this means in more rigorous terms and to assessing the case for the view. What follows is a survey of such work. I begin by looking at competing accounts of what is meant by nothing over and above and then turn to how the physical should be understood. Once we are clear (...)
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  37. Physicalism Without Fundamentality.Torin Alter - 2022 - Erkenntnis 87 (4):1975-1986.
    Physicalism should be characterized in a way that makes it compatible with the possibility that the physical world is infinitely decomposable. Some have proposed solving this problem by replacing a widely accepted No Fundamental Mentality requirement on physicalism with a more general No Low-Level Mentality requirement. The latter states that physicalism could be true if there is a level of decomposition beneath which nothing is mental, whereas physicalism is false otherwise. Brown argues that this solution does (...)
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  38. Physicalism, Truthmaking, and Levels of Reality: Prospects and Problems.Kevin Morris - 2018 - Topoi 37 (3):473-482.
    This paper considers the extent to which the notion of truthmaking can play a substantive role in defining physicalism. While a truthmaking-based approach to physicalism is prima facie attractive, there is some reason to doubt that truthmaking can do much work when it comes to understanding physicalism, and perhaps austere metaphysical frameworks in general. First, despite promising to dispense with higher-level properties and states, truthmaking appears to make little progress on issues concerning higher-level items and how they (...)
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  39. Physicalism and overdetermination.Scott Sturgeon - 1998 - Mind 107 (426):411-432.
    I argue that our knowledge of the world's causal structure does not generate a sound argument for physicalism. This undermines the popular view that physicalism is the only scientifically respectable worldview.
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  40. Russellian Physicalists get our phenomenal concepts wrong.Marcelino Botin - 2023 - Philosophical Studies 180 (7):1829-1848.
    Russellian physicalism is becoming increasingly popular because it promises to deliver what everybody wants, realism and physicalism about consciousness. But Russellian physicalists are not the first to swear on “the promise”, standard Type-B physicalism is a less fanciful view that also claims to give everything and take nothing. In this paper, I argue that our hopes should not be placed on Russellian physicalism because, unlike Type-B physicalism, it cannot explain how phenomenal concepts can reveal the (...)
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  41. Physicalism and ontological holism.Michael Esfeld - 1999 - Metaphilosophy 30 (4):319-337.
    The claim of this paper is that we should envisage physicalism as an ontological holism. Our current basic physics, quantum theory, suggests that, ontologically speaking, we have to assume one global quantum state of the world; many of the properties that are often taken to be intrinsic properties of physical systems are in fact relations, which are determined by that global quantum state. The paper elaborates on this conception of physicalism as an ontological holism and considers issues such (...)
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  42. Can physicalism be non-reductive?Andrew Melnyk - 2008 - Philosophy Compass 3 (6):1281-1296.
    Can physicalism (or materialism) be non-reductive? I provide an opinionated survey of the debate on this question. I suggest that attempts to formulate non-reductive physicalism by appeal to claims of event identity, supervenience, or realization have produced doctrines that fail either to be physicalist or to be non-reductive. Then I treat in more detail a recent attempt to formulate non-reductive physicalism by Derk Pereboom, but argue that it fares no better.
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  43. Physicalism and our knowledge of intrinsic properties.Alyssa Ney - 2007 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 85 (1):41 – 60.
    that the properties of science are purely extrinsic with the metaphysical principle that substances must also have intrinsic properties, the arguments reach the conclusion that there are intrinsic properties of whose natures we cannot know. It is the goal of this paper to establish that such arguments are not just ironic but extremely problematic. The optimistic physicalist principles that help get the argument off the ground ultimately undermine any justification the premises give for acceptance of the conclusion. Though I do (...)
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  44. Identity Physicalism vs Ground Physicalism about Consciousness.Adam Pautz - forthcoming - In G. Rabin (ed.), Grounding and Consciousness. Oxford University Press.
    Unlike identity physicalism, ground physicalism does not achieve the physicalist dream. It faces the T-shirt problem for ground physicalism (Pautz 2014; Schaffer this volume; Rubenstein ms). In the case of insentient nature, it may be able to get by with small handful of very general ground laws to explain the emergence of nonfundamental objects and properties – for example, a few “principle of plenitude”. But I argue that for the case consciousness it will require a separate huge (...)
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  45. Nonreductive Physicalism and the Problem of Strong Closure.Sophie Gibb - 2012 - American Philosophical Quarterly 49 (1):29-42.
    Closure is the central premise in one of the best arguments for physicalism—the argument from causal overdetermination. According to Closure, at every time at which a physical event has a sufficient cause, it has a sufficient physical cause. This principle is standardly defended by appealing to the fact that it enjoys empirical support from numerous confirming cases (and no disconfirming cases) in physics. However, in recent literature on mental causation, attempts have been made to provide a stronger argument for (...)
     
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  46. Revisionary physicalism.John Bickle - 1992 - Biology and Philosophy 7 (4):411-30.
    The focus of much recent debate between realists and eliminativists about the propositional attitudes obscures the fact that a spectrum of positions lies between these celebrated extremes. Appealing to an influential theoretical development in cognitive neurobiology, I argue that there is reason to expect such an “intermediate” outcome. The ontology that emerges is a revisionary physicalism. The argument draws lessons about revisionistic reductions from an important historical example, the reduction of equilibrium thermodynamics to statistical mechanics, and applies them to (...)
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  47. Defining physicalism.Alyssa Ney - 2008 - Philosophy Compass 3 (5):1033-1048.
    This article discusses recent disagreements over the correct formulation of physicalism. Although there appears to be a consensus outside those who discuss the issue that physicalists believe that what exists is what is countenanced by physics, as we will see, this orthodoxy faces an important puzzle now frequently referred to as 'Hempel's Dilemma'. After surveying the historical trajectory from Enlightenment-era materialism to contemporary physicalism, I examine several mainstream approaches that respond to Hempel's dilemma, and the benefits and drawbacks (...)
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  48. Supervenience Physicalism, Emergentism, and the Polluted Supervenience Base.Kevin Morris - 2014 - Erkenntnis 79 (2):351-365.
    A prominent objection to supervenience physicalism is that a definition of physicalism in terms of supervenience allows for physicalism to be compatible with nonphysicalist outlooks, such as certain forms of emergentism. I take as my starting point a recent defense of supervenience physicalism from this objection. According to this line of thought, the subvenient base for emergent properties cannot be said to be purely physical; rather, it is “polluted” with emergent features in virtue of necessarily giving (...)
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  49. Physicalism without supervenience.Lei Zhong - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 178 (5):1529-1544.
    It is widely accepted that supervenience is a minimal commitment of physicalism. In this article, however, I aim to argue that physicalism should be exempted from the supervenience requirement. My arguments rely on a parallel between ontological dependence and causal dependence. Since causal dependence does not require causal determination, ontological dependence should not require ontological determination either. Moreover, my approach has a significant theoretical advantage: if physicalism is not committed to supervenience, then the metaphysical possibility of zombies—which (...)
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    Physicalism.Daniel Stoljar - 2009 - In Tim Bayne, Axel Cleeremans & Patrick Wilken (eds.), The Oxford Companion to Consciousness. New York, NY, USA: pp. 529-532.
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