Consciousness and the Limits of Objectivity: The Case for Subjective Physicalism

Paperback | March 1, 2017

byRobert J. Howell

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In Consciousness and the Limits of Objectivity Robert J. Howell argues that the options in the debates about consciousness and the mind-body problem are more limited than many philosophers have appreciated. Unless one takes a hard-line stance, which either denies the data provided byconsciousness or makes a leap of faith about future discoveries, one must admit that no objective picture of our world can be complete. Howell argues, however, that this is consistent with physicalism, contrary to received wisdom. After developing a novel, neo-Cartesian notion of the physical,followed by a careful consideration of the three major anti-materialist arguments - Black's "Presentation Problem", Jackson's Knowledge Argument, and Chalmers' Conceivability Argument - Howell proposes a "subjective physicalism" which gives the data of consciousness their due, while retaining theadvantages of a monistic, physical ontology.

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In Consciousness and the Limits of Objectivity Robert J. Howell argues that the options in the debates about consciousness and the mind-body problem are more limited than many philosophers have appreciated. Unless one takes a hard-line stance, which either denies the data provided byconsciousness or makes a leap of faith about future d...

Robert J. Howell received his Ph.D. In philosophy from Brown University in 2002. He is an Associate Professor at Southern Methodist University, and has published numerous articles on the mind-body problem, self-knowledge, and issues in epistemology. He is the co-author, with Torin Alter, of A Dialogue on Consciousness (OUP, 2009) and T...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:208 pagesPublished:March 1, 2017Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198776616

ISBN - 13:9780198776611

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Table of Contents

Table of ContentsAcknowledgmentsIntroductionPart I: Defining Physicalism1. The Base Problem2. Supervenience and the Relation ProblemPart II: The Threat of the Subjective3. Phenomenal Knowledge and Acquaintance4. Acquaintance and ObjectivityPart III: Saving Physicalism5. The Ontology of Subjective Physicalism6. Deduction, Necessitation and Acquaintance7. Assessing Subjective PhysicalismBibliography

Editorial Reviews

"Short, sharply-focused, and well-written, this volume develops an improved version of supervenience-based physicalism . . . an excellent addition to the literature on the hard problem of consciousness . . . Highly recommended." --W. Seager, Choice