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Rigid Designation and Theoretical Identities$
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Joseph LaPorte

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199609208

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199609208.001.0001

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The Skeptical Argument Impugning Psychophysical Identity Statements: on its Significance and the Cost of its Philosophical Resources

The Skeptical Argument Impugning Psychophysical Identity Statements: on its Significance and the Cost of its Philosophical Resources

Chapter:
(p.148) 7 The Skeptical Argument Impugning Psychophysical Identity Statements: on its Significance and the Cost of its Philosophical Resources
Source:
Rigid Designation and Theoretical Identities
Author(s):

LaPorte Joseph

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199609208.003.0007

This chapter argues that the skeptical argument impugning psychophysical identities is significant if convincing and that the significant impact of the argument comes at little cost, in terms of controversial philosophical resources. The chapter begins by clarifying the conclusion of the skeptical argument: namely, that we cannot be warranted in accepting any specific psychophysical identity statement. The chapter then argues that the skeptical argument is significant for functionalists and multiple-realizability theorists, who often appeal to supervenience or token identity, even though the skeptical argument concerns type identity; and that anyway the argument can be redirected to address supervenience claims and assertions of token identity. The chapter accepts a cost that eliminative materialists are unwilling to pay and argues that in practice, analytic functionalists tend to embrace a form of eliminativism. The chapter does not commit to some claims associated with Chalmers, including two-dimensionalism, modal rationalism, and apriority.

Keywords:   two-dimensionalism, Chalmers, apriority, eliminative materialism, multiple realizability, functionalism, warrant, supervenience, token identity, type identity

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