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Week 12 of Philosophy Notes

by: William Bartek

Week 12 of Philosophy Notes PHIL 1000 - 01

William Bartek
General Introduction to Philosophy
Matthew McGrath

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About this Document

This is week 12 of notes in Philosophy 1000 covers Descartes' opinions on dualism, materialism, the mind-body problem, and Smart's materialism
General Introduction to Philosophy
Matthew McGrath
Class Notes
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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by William Bartek on Friday November 13, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to PHIL 1000 - 01 at University of Missouri - Columbia taught by Matthew McGrath in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 20 views. For similar materials see General Introduction to Philosophy in PHIL-Philosophy at University of Missouri - Columbia.

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Date Created: 11/13/15
Philosophy 1000 Descartes and Dualism Dualism o The mental is not reducible to the material 0 Substance dualism minds and bodies are distinct substances 0 Property dualism mental properties aren t reducible to materialistic properties 0 One property is reducible if it can be fully explained by other properties Two Arguments for Substance Dualism o Argument from divisibility 1 Body is divisible 2 Mind isn t divisible 3 So mind is distinct from the body 0 Argument from clear and distinct understanding 1 If I can clearly and distinctly understand one thing apart from another they re distinct 2 I can clearly and distinctly understand myself apart from my body 3 So I am distinct from my body The Ship Disanalogy 0 Response to the question quotHow can the mind and body affect one another if substance dualism is true 0 I am not merely present in my body like a sailor in a ship 0 and the body form a unit Elisabeth s Question o How can a inphysical thing the mind get a material thing the body to move and create voluntary action 0 Descartes We shouldn t compare mindbody relations to bodybody relations The MindBody Problem and Smart s Materialism o MindBody Problem How can we fit the mental into the material world Materialism o Belief that the mental is reducible to the material 0 The materialist denies all dualism JCC Smart 0 Identity Thesis Sensations are brain processes 0 Occam s Razor 0 Don t believe in things unless you need to in order to explain your data 0 Smart is NOT talking about words he s talking about sensations Morning Star Example 0 We see the morning star and the evening star at different times of day They are in fact the same star but we identify it with different properties being the time of day we see it therefore leading to our belief that they are two different stars Obiections to Smart s Theories 0 Any illiterate peasant knows he has sensations but has no idea of neurophysiology 0 Lightning Response The illiterate peasant knows he sees lightning but has no idea about electrical discharges Still that s what lightning is 0 Maybe there are no irreducibly mental processes but there must be irreducibly mental properties if we can know sensations are brain processes 0 Why Because we have to use different properties to identify one and the same thing I In the Star case being visible in the morning and evening are two separate properties that apply to the same star 0 Smart s Reply Topic neutral theory of the meaning of sensation talk I Topic Neutral To say you have a sensation is to say there s something happening in you like what happens when you perceive real things of certain sorts o Objection to Topic Neutral I To know the afterimage experience is similar to the perception of an orange don t we have to know what both are like individually and notice that they are similar


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