PHIL 241 Midterm Study Guide
PHIL 241 Midterm Study Guide PHIL 241
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This 8 page Study Guide was uploaded by Taylor Russell on Tuesday February 23, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to PHIL 241 at University of Arizona taught by William Leonard in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 312 views. For similar materials see Consciousness and Cognition in PHIL-Philosophy at University of Arizona.
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Date Created: 02/23/16
PHIL 241: Consciousness and Cognition Midterm #1 Study Guide Terms/concepts/arguments/theorists to know Argument-set of propositions in which the conclusion is supposed to be supported by the other propositions(premises) Proposition-meaning of an informative sentence, not the sentence itself either true or false Validity-if the premises entail the conclusion Soundness- the argument makes sense Deduction-if all premises are true the conclusion must be true Abduction- premises are not intended to entail the conclusion. Instead, the conclusion is intended to be supported by the premises Theoretical virtues Induction- premises are not intended to entail the conclusion. Instead, the conclusion is intended to be supported by the premises Modus ponens- If P then Q. P. Therefore Q Modus tollens- If P then Q. Not Q. Therefore not P. Denying the antecedent- If P then Q. Not P. Therefore not Q. Affirming the consequent -if P then Q. Q. Therefore P. Mind-body problem- What is the relationship between consciousness and the brain? Dualism- Mind and body are composed of different kinds of stuff: physical stuff and non- physical Substance dualism- mind and body are separate; mind lacks physical attributes (different stuffs) Property dualism-irreducible attributes of brain states, mental phenomena are non-physical properties of physical substances Monism- Mind and body are not composed of different kinds of stuff. Materialism- Everything is physical. Idealism- Everything is non-physical (mental). Interactionism- Physical events causally impact mental events and mental events causally impact physical events. (Rene Descartes) Epiphenomenalism- Physical events causally impact mental events but mental events don't causally impact physical events. Parallelism-Physical events don't causally impact mental events and mental events don't causally impact physical events. Interaction problem- Causal closure of the physical • (1) How is causal interaction between physical stuff and non-physical stuff even possible? • This is a problem for interactionism and epiphenomenalism, but not for parallelism (since it involves no causal interaction). • (2) Causal closure of the physical domain: Every physical event has entirely physical causes. This is a problem for interactionism, but not for epiphenomenenalism or parallelism (since they involve no mental → physical causation). Behaviorism- Mental states are identical to (the very same thing as) dispositions to behave in various ways Identity theory (reductive materialism)- Mental states are identical to brain states Functionalism (non-reductive materialism)- Mental states are identical to functional states of the brain Metaphysics Ontology- philosophical study of becoming or existence, and their relations. Deals with similarities and differences between entities that exist and how they are grouped 1 Rene Descartes Indubitability argument- Purports to show that mind & brain have different properties, from which their distinctness follows. Conceivability argument- Purports to show that mind & brain could fail to coexist, from which their distinctness follows Leibniz's law- If x=y then x and y have all and only the same properties. (Leibniz's law: the indiscernibility of identicals) Dubitability- If I can clearly and distinctly conceive of a scenario in which ~P, then ~P is logically possible and hence P is dubitable. Conceivability- If it is logically possible for x to exist without y then x≠y. (Another principle of analytic ontology) Clear and distinct conceivability- • It is conceivable that there are finitely many prime #s, but it is logically impossible that there are finitely many prime #s. • Your conception that there are finitely many primes #s isn't a clear conception. Such a conception won't entail possibility. You can conceive of a 1000-sided polygon (a chiliagon), but that conception isn't a distinct conception. George Berkeley- 'Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous' in 1713. • Idealism = the world consists of ideas, which are essentially experiences within minds. • Only ideas are known directly. “Matter” (something existing unperceived) is a baseless abstraction conjured by philosophers. Deductive argument for idealism- • The term 'object' gets its sense (meaning) by ostention or reference through perception. The concept <object> gets its content through perceptions Abductive argument for idealism- What we perceive directly are ideas. Physical objects that exist independently of perception are a hypothesis posited abductively. Occam's razor/parsimony- Entities should not be multiplied unnecessarily. simplest answer must be the correct answer “Tree in the quad” objection (see questions portion) Spandrels- evolutionary accident, feature that serves no evolutionary purpose The problem of other minds- no way of knowing what other beings experience in terms of consciousness, or how it operates The argument from analogy Phylogeny & ontogeny Argument from phylogeny and ontogeny-“ ontogenetic and phylogenetic development of mental phenomena beginning from their most primitive stages. [76Evolutionary biology furthermore places tight constraints on any philosophical theory of the mind, as the gene- based mechanism of natural selection does not allow any giant leaps in the development of neural complexity” Wikipedia Introspectionism-theory that examines conscious experience as entirely based on ones own thoughts or feelings Logical positivism Verificationism- a proposition is only cognitively meaningful if it can be definitively and conclusively determined to be either true or false Methodological behaviorism- Psychology must restrict itself to the study of behavior. • Direct consequence of logical positivism. Direct opposition to introspectionism. • Psychological behaviorism- Research program in psychology. Application of methodological behaviorism to psychology. • Analytic behaviorism- Theory of the mind-body relationship. • Roughly, the mind is just dispositions to behave in different ways in response to different stimuli. • More precisely, the meaning of mental terms just pertains to behavioral dispositions. (Hence analytical behaviorism) Analytical behaviorism is a form of materialism with respect to the mind, since it holds that the mind is nothing more than behavioral dispositions and since behavioral dispositions can be understood in entirely physical terms. Behavioral dispositions- Behaviorism claims that mind is just behavior, but we seem to know introspectively that, in addition to our behavioral inclinations, there are qualitative feels associated with our mental states. Beyond the disposition to take aspirin, headaches involve a feeling of pain Analytical problems for behaviorism- • (1) Mind is behavior. (suppose for reductionism) • (2) Introspection reveals only dispositions to behave in various ways. (from 1) • (3) Introspection reveals that mind is more than just dispositions to behave in various ways. (premise) • (C) Therefore mind is not behavior. (from 1-3 by reductio ad absurdum) • (3) Rules out mental states as causes of behavior • Intuitively, mental states cause our behavior. Hence we can explain behavior by appeal to mental states. • E.g. Samara opened the fridge because she wanted a beer. • But according to behaviorism, mental states are behavior (and dispositions to behave), so they cannot cause behavior. And hence they cannot explain behavior. • (4) No cluster of behavioral dispositions is necessary or sufficient for being in a particular mental state. • Different creatures could be in pain and yet manifest different behavioral dispositions. So no cluster of behavioral dispositions is necessary for being in pain. • An actor or an unconscious machine could manifest any given cluster of behavioral dispositions without being in pain. So no cluster of behavioral dispositions is sufficient for being in pain. • Generally, a successful analysis must give necessary and sufficient conditions for the analysans. (e.g. 'lightning = atmospheric electrical discharge') • So the behaviorist analyses of mental states fail. It may not even potentially work at all due to analytical flaws. • If those analytical flaws can be resolved then it still faces serious conflicts. • It conflicts with what we know about our own minds and how we know it. • It conflicts with our intuitions about the relationship between mental states and behavior. And as a result of that conflict, it conflicts with our explanatory practices Some questions to guide your study Questions about logic and critical thinking (1) Can a valid argument have false premises? (2) Can a sound argument have false premises? (3) Can an unsound argument be valid? (4) Can an invalid argument be sound? (5) Must speakers of different languages believe distinct propositions? (6) Can abductive arguments be valid? no (7) Can inductive arguments be valid? no (8) What makes a deductive argument strong? the conclusion is certain, the premises entail the conclusion (9) What makes an abductive argument strong? The conclusion exhibits explanatory virtues such as predictive novelty, testability, consistency (10) What makes an inductive argument strong? When the proposed explanation exhibits explanatory virtues (11) What are some of the theoretical virtues? (12) What is the logical structure of modus ponens? (13) What is the logical structure of modus tollens? (14) What is the logical structure of denying the antecedent? (15) What is the logical structure of affirming the consequent? (16) What is an argument? (17) What are necessary conditions? (18) What are sufficient conditions? Questions about the mind-body problem (1) What is the mind-body problem? relationship between consciousness and the brain (2) Why does there appear to be a mind-body problem Either the difference is real or it is merely apparent? (3) What is ontology? (4) How are dualism and monism related? They explain the relation of the mind to the body whether merely related or causally related (5) What are the dualistic responses to the mind-body problem? (6) What are the monistic responses to the mind-body problem? (7) Why be a materialist? Don’t believe in afterlife, (8) Why be a dualist? To both leave open the possibility of an afterlife, but not discredit science completely while still attempting to account for differences between physical and mental (9) What are the various materialist theories? -identity theory -materialism -functionalism (10) What are the various dualist theories? -interactionalism -property dualism -epiphenomenalism Questions about substance dualism (1) Who argued for substance dualism? • Substance dualism: the mind and the brain are made of different substances. (In Descartes' terms: a res cogitans and a res extensa) • Immediate advantages: • (1) Possibility of life after death. (2) Validates intuitive differences between mental and physical. (2) What is the indubitability argument? (3) What is the conceivability argument? (4) Is the indubitability argument deductive, abductive, or inductive? The conceivability argument? • The indubitability argument • (1) My brain has the property: Its existence can be doubted by me. (premise) • (2) My mind has the property: Its existence cannot be doubted by me. (premise) • (3) If x=y then x and y have all and only the same properties. • (C) Therefore my mind ≠ my brain. Conciev: • If it is logically possible for x to exist without y then x≠y. If x=y then any logically possible situation in which x exists must be a situation in which y exists. (5) How might one respond to the indubitability and conceivability arguments? ------Parallel argument • (1) Superman has the property: Lois Lane believes he can fly. (premise) • (2) Clark Kent has the property: Lois Lane believes he can't fly. (premise) • (3) If x=y then x and y have all and only the same properties. • (C) Therefore Superman ≠ Clark Kent. -----Criticism • (1) Can you really conceive of your mind existing without your brain? And is this conception really clear and distinct? • (2) Does clear and distinct conceivability really entail logical possibility? (6) What is an example of something you might conceive unclearly at best? there are finitely many primes #s isn't a clear conceivable value (7) What is an example of something you might conceive indistinctly at best? You can conceive of a 1000-sided polygon (a chiliagon), but that conception isn't a distinct conception (8) Which of the arguments for dualism appeals to Leibniz's law? indubitability (9) Is Leibniz's law a claim about numerical or qualitative identity? It counts for extensional content but not intentional content (10) What sorts of properties seem not to work when plugged into Leibniz's law? Leibniz's law doesn't work for properties occurring within the scope of an intentional operator (in which case substitution of co-referring terms fails to preserve truth value). Psychological properties are often like this. (11) What are the two kinds of interaction problem? (12) Does interactionism have to deal with both of them? (13) Does epiphenomenalism have to deal with both of them? (14) Does parallelism have to deal with both of them? Questions about idealism (1) What are the deductive and inductive arguments for idealism? See definition in above section (2) Which of those arguments appeals to Occam's razor? Deductive (3) What is Occam's razor? Simplest answer must be the correct one (4) Why does the answer to (2) depend on the answer to (3)? It depends which answer is considered the simplest (5) How is idealism different from dualism or materialism? Everything is a product of the mind (6) What is the “tree in the quad” objection and how does Berkeley respond to it? • This “tree in the quad objection” is the subject of a famous limerick: • There was a young man who said, "God • Must think it exceedingly odd • If he finds that this tree • Continues to be • When there's no one about in the Quad." • Dear Sir: • Your astonishment's odd: • I am always about in the Quad. • And that's why the tree • Will continue to be, • Since observed by • Yours faithfully, GOD objects continue existing when we're not looking because they're being perceived by the mind of God Questions about epiphenomenalism (1) What's the difference between epiphenomenalism and interactionism? benefits of dualism and is the least problematic view in terms of interaction with the brain (2) How does that difference bear on the extent to which each view faces interaction problems? • 1st problem • The feeling of pain obviously causes pain behavior (crying out, avoiding the painful stimulus, etc.) • 2nd problem • Consciousness wouldn't have evolved unless it had physical effects. • 3rd problem The best solution to the problem of other minds depends on peoples' behavior being caused by their consciousness’s. (3) What is the problem of other minds? How can you know something else is conscious, and what its consciousness is like --- How can the problem of other minds be repurposed to argue against epiphenomenalism? • (1) X shares many features with me. • (2) Many of my behaviors are caused by my conscious experiences. • (C) Therefore many of X's behaviors are caused by X's conscious experiences. • Weaknesses of this argument: • (1) Will only work for Xs that share many features with me. What about ants, brain damaged people, and robots? • (2) There looms a potential refutation by parallel reasoning. • (1) X shares many features with me. • (2) I have a mole shaped like Italy on my chest. • (C) Therefore X has a mole shaped like Italy on her chest. (5) How does Jackson respond to that argument? Even if epiphenomenalism is true, other people's behaviors can still be evidence that they are conscious. Jackson responds, “You're assuming that the behavior would have to be caused by the consciousness in order for it to provide evidence that the consciousness is there. But that's false. The behavior can provide evidence that the consciousness is there because my behavior and my consciousness are both caused by my brain, and similar behavior in others suggests that both it, and a consciousness like mine, are caused by their brains. (6) What is phylogenetic development? Ontogenetic development? Phylogenetic development is the development of genetic ability, ontogenetic is the development of structures that have functional and evolutionary base (7) How might a materialist appeal to those kinds of development to argue against dualism? Those developments are scientific evolutionary prospects, may be used to show that there is no evolutionary benefit of an afterlife or mental conscious experience (8) What is the evolutionary argument against epiphenomenalism, and how does Jackson respond to it? Calls into question the efficacy of qualia of a mental experience, Questions about behaviorism/early psychology (1) What is introspectionism? Modeled after chemistry, it aimed to uncover the basic elements of consciousness In principle compatible with dualism or monism (2) Did introspectionists take a stance on the mind-body problem? (3) Why did introspectionism fall out of favor? logical positivism • Frustration with metaphysical issues in philosophy, e.g. the existence of God. • Frustration with metaphysical issues in science, e.g. the interpretation of quantum mechanics. Frustration with metaphysical issues in psychology, e.g. the nature of consciousness. (4) Who were the two major practitioners of introspectionism? Titchener and Kulpe (5) What is logical positivism? central tenant is verificationism, the theory that the meaning of a proposition is its means of verification. • A statement is meaningful if and only if: • (1) It is true or false by definition. (Hence it has a purely rational means of verification.) • (2) It is verifiable (or falsifiable) by means of some conceivable empirical observation. Otherwise it is meaningless. (6) What is the verification criterion of meaning? A statement is meaningful if and only if: (1) It is true or false by definition (2) ) It is verifiable (or falsifiable) by means of some conceivable empirical observation. (3) Otherwise it is meaningless. (7) Give some examples of statements that are meaningful according to the verification criterion and some that are meaningless, and explain why, according to the criterion, the former are meaningful and the latter are meaningless. (8) What are the three forms of behaviorism? Methodological behaviorism, psychological, analytical (9) Are all three forms of behaviorism responses to the mind-body problem? (10) Why does behaviorism pair well with logical positivism? (11) Why does behaviorism count as a form of materialism? theme that mind is behavior, and that the proper study of mind is the study of behavior. (12) What does “disposition” mean when we talk about behavioral dispositions? mind is just dispositions to behave in different ways in response to different stimuli (13) Why might you think that behaviorist analyses of mental states are circular? • circular (e.g. “Heat = that property of an object whereby it is hot” or, to take a famous example from Moliere, a sleeping pill puts people to sleep because it possesses 'dormative virtues'.) It has been charged that behaviorist analyses of mental states fail on this account, because they tacitly rely on unreduced concepts of mental states in their analysans. (14) Why might you think that behaviorism conflicts with the mode of our self-knowledge? The content? (2) Conflict with mode and content of self-knowledge • Behaviorism seems to conflict with how we know our own minds. • We can know what mental states we're in without observing our behavior. Formalizing this thought as an argument: • (1) Mind is behavior. (suppose for reductio) • (2) You can know about a mind only by knowing about behavior. (from 1) • (3) You can know your own mind only by knowing about your own behavior. (from 2) • (4) You can know your own mind without knowing about your own behavior. (premise) • (C) Therefore mind is not behavior. (from 1-4 by reductio ad absurdum) (15) When, roughly, was behaviorism developed? (16) Why does behaviorism seem to conflict with our explanatory practices? It may not even potentially work at all due to analytical flaws. • If those analytical flaws can be resolved, then it still faces serious conflicts. • It conflicts with what we know about our own minds and how we know it. • It conflicts with our intuitions about the relationship between mental states and behavior. And as a result of that conflict, it conflicts with our explanatory practices (17) How might perfect actors pose a problem for behaviorism? Robots? People with “locked- in syndrome”? An actor or an unconscious machine could manifest any given cluster of behavioral dispositions without being in pain. So no cluster of behavioral dispositions is sufficient for being in pain. Questions about property dualism (1) Is the knowledge argument a problem for substance dualism? (2) Is the knowledge argument a problem for behaviorism? (3) Is the knowledge argument a problem for reductive materialism? (4) Is the knowledge argument a problem for non-reductive materialism? (5) What is the general structure of the knowledge argument? (6) Who is super sighted Fred? What is his condition? (7) How can the case of super sighted Fred be used to form a knowledge argument? (8) Who is color blind Mary? What is her condition? (9) How can the case of color blind Mary be used to form a knowledge argument? (10) Come up with your own example of a case that could be used to give a knowledge argument. (11) What is the conclusion of the knowledge argument? (12) What is the difference between substance dualism and property dualism? (13) Does the knowledge argument favor substance dualism or property dualism? Or does it equally favor both? (14) What is physical information? (15) What is the hard problem? (16) What are the easy problems? Give some examples. (17) Why is the hard problem hard and the easy problems easy? (18) What is functional explanation? (19) Give some examples of scientific problems that were resolved via functional explanation. (20) What is a philosophical zombie? (21) What is the zombie argument? (22) What is the conclusion of the zombie argument? (23) What is the explanatory gap, and how does it relate to the knowledge argument and the zombie argument? (24) What are structural features and intrinsic features? (25) How might one account for the explanatory gap in terms of structural features and intrinsic features of things? (26) What is an example of something that is physically impossible? (27) What is an example of something that is physically impossible but metaphysically possible? (28) What is an example of something that is metaphysically impossible? (29) How are possibility and conceivability linked in the zombie argument? (30) What sort of possibility is relevant for the zombie argument? (31) Why is that sort of possibility rather than some other sort of possibility relevant? (32) How does the neuron-silicon chip substitution thought experiment go? (33) What is it intended to show? (34) What is a non-reductive scientific theory of consciousness, according to David Chalmers? (35) Give another example of a theory in the history of science which was non-reductive in this sense. (36) What are the three principle Chalmers anticipates will guide fundamental laws of consciousness? (37) Which of those three principles is supported by appeal to the neuron-silicon chip thought experiment? (38) How do the principles relate to one another, explanatorily?
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