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Staying AlivePersonal Identity, Practical Concerns, and the Unity of a Life$
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Marya Schechtman

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199684878

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199684878.001.0001

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Personal Identity

Personal Identity

Chapter:
(p.139) 6 Personal Identity
Source:
Staying Alive
Author(s):

Marya Schechtman

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199684878.003.0007

This chapter shows how the Person Life View delimits and tracks individual persons. By means of a discussion of biological life and death, which serves as an analogue, the chapter develops the idea that we should think of person lives in terms of homeostatic property clusters along the lines developed by Richard Boyd. This means that there will be no set of necessary and sufficient relations that must be in place for a person life to continue. To show more concretely how this model works within the context of the Person Life View the chapter revisits some of the standard puzzle cases from the philosophical literature on personal identity, and considers how the view evaluates them. It also describes how this newly developed conception of personal identity changes the way we can use the method of thought experiments in investigating questions of personal identity.

Keywords:   biological death, biological life, Boyd, homeostatic property cluster, personal identity, puzzle case, thought experiment

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