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Thinking Parts

Madden, R; (2016) Thinking Parts. In: Blatti, S and Snowdon, PF, (eds.) Animalism: New Essays on Persons, Animals, and Identity. Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK. Green open access

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Undetached proper parts of human organisms generate a sceptical challenge to the naïve thesis that we have human form. One ‘eliminativist’ response is to deny the existence of such proper parts. The aim of this chapter is to introduce, and to some extent assess, some non-eliminativist responses to the sceptical challenge, responses which do not deny the existence of undetached parts of humans. These include two new ‘epistemic’ strategies—an evidential-externalist strategy, and a thought-theoretic strategy—and a ‘psychological’ solution, which draws upon a function-based approach to mental properties. It is argued that the latter psychological solution is more promising than a more commonly defended maximality-based psychological solution. The chapter closes by responding to a variant thinking parts argument specifically addressed to animalism.

Type: Book chapter
Title: Thinking Parts
ISBN-13: 9780199608751
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199608751.003.0009
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199608751.0...
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: parts, humans, animalism, self-consciousness, function, persons, scepticism, evidence, externalism, mind
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Philosophy
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1362470
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