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Real Materialismand Other Essays$
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Galen Strawson

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199267422

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199267422.001.0001

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What is the Relation Between an Experience, the Subject of the Experience, and the Content of the Experience?

What is the Relation Between an Experience, the Subject of the Experience, and the Content of the Experience?

Chapter:
(p.151) 6 What is the Relation Between an Experience, the Subject of the Experience, and the Content of the Experience?
Source:
Real Materialism
Author(s):

Galen Strawson (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199267422.003.0007

This chapter takes ‘content’ in a natural internalist way to refer to occurrent mental content. It introduces a ‘thin’ or ‘live’ notion of the subject according to which a subject of experience cannot exist unless there is an experience for it to be the subject of. The chapter then argues, first, that in the case of a particular experience E, its content C, and its (thin) subject S, [CES]; and, second, that the metaphysical fact that underlies this (strong modal) equivalence is in fact identity: [E = S = C]. The chapter suggests that the effort of thought required to grasp this is deeply revealing of the nature of reality. On the way, the chapter raises a doubt about the viability of the traditional object/property distinction.

Keywords:   consciousness, experience, subject of experience, thin subject, subjectivity, metaphysics, object/property distinction

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