Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Consciousness and its Objects$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Colin McGinn

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780199267606

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2005

DOI: 10.1093/019926760X.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 23 October 2019

What is it not Like to be a Brain?

What is it not Like to be a Brain?

(p.77) 4 What is it not Like to be a Brain?
Consciousness and its Objects

Colin McGinn (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

It is argued that materialism, the thesis that facts about the mind are reducible without residue to facts about the brain, fails to do justice to the nature of physical phenomena. The symmetry of identity means that if C-fibre firing is just pain, then it can have no properties that pain does not have and cannot, therefore, have any of the objective properties not possessed by pain: it cannot be observable, symmetrically accessible, conceivable from many points of view, spatial, and subject-independent. From this it follows that classic type-identity materialism is false. It does not however follow that supervenience must be rejected, or irreducibly mental properties accepted: subjective mental states might reduce to something lacking the marks of full-blown objectivity; necessary connections between pain and C-fibre firing might exist even though the two cannot be identified.

Keywords:   C-fibre firing, identity, materialism, objectivity, pain, subjectivity, symmetry

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .