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Transparent MindsA Study of Self-Knowledge$
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Jordi Fernández

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199664023

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199664023.001.0001

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The Problem of Self-Knowledge

The Problem of Self-Knowledge

(p.3) 1 The Problem of Self-Knowledge
Transparent Minds

Jordi Fernández

Oxford University Press

This chapter sets up the discussion that will lead to an account of self-knowledge later in the book, and addresses some preliminary methodological issues. It begins by specifying the phenomenon that requires explanation. It then distinguishes the investigation to be pursued in the book from other projects on self-knowledge in the literature. A discussion of some current accounts of self-knowledge follows. These include, among others, a functionalist model once defended by Sydney Shoemaker, and Richard Moran's deliberative model. The purpose of the discussion is to illustrate the conditions that any account of self-knowledge should respect by examining several accounts that, it is argued, fail to meet those conditions. Some of those conditions are: Explaining our privileged access to our mental states without committing ourselves to the infallibility of self-knowledge, explaining the transparency of belief and desire, and accommodating the intuition that self-knowledge constitutes a cognitive achievement.

Keywords:   self-knowledge, functionalism, deliberation, infallibility, cognitive achievement, transparency, Shoemaker, Moran

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