The Self: Naturalism, Consciousness, and the First-Person Stance

Paperback | March 13, 2015

byJonardon Ganeri

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What is it to occupy a first-person stance? Is the first-personal idea one has of oneself in conflict with the idea of oneself as a physical being? How, if there is a conflict, is it to be resolved? The Self recommends a new way to approach those questions, finding inspiration in theoriesabout consciousness and mind in first millennial India. These philosophers do not regard the first-person stance as in conflict with the natural - their idea of nature is not that of scientific naturalism, but rather a liberal naturalism non-exclusive of the normative. Jonardon Ganeri explores a wide range of ideas about the self: reflexive self-representation, mental files, and quasi-subject analyses of subjective consciousness; the theory of emergence as transformation; embodiment and the idea of a bodily self; the centrality of the emotions to the unity ofself. Buddhism's claim that there is no self too readily assumes an account of what a self must be. Ganeri argues instead that the self is a negotiation between self-presentation and normative avowal, a transaction grounded in unconscious mind. Immersion, participation, and coordination are jointlyconstitutive of self, the first-person stance at once lived, engaged, and underwritten. And all is in harmony with the idea of the natural.

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What is it to occupy a first-person stance? Is the first-personal idea one has of oneself in conflict with the idea of oneself as a physical being? How, if there is a conflict, is it to be resolved? The Self recommends a new way to approach those questions, finding inspiration in theoriesabout consciousness and mind in first millennial...

Jonardon Ganeri's work has focused primarily on a retrieval of the Sanskrit philosophical tradition in relationship to contemporary Anglo-American analytical philosophy, and he has done work in this vein on theories of self, conceptions of rationality, and the philosophy of language. He has also worked extensively on the social and in...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:388 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.01 inPublished:March 13, 2015Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198709390

ISBN - 13:9780198709398

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Table of Contents

IntroductionPart I. Naturalism and the SelfHistorical Prelude: Varieties of Naturalism1. Conceptions of Self: An Analytical Taxonomy2. Experiment, Imagination and the SelfPart II. Mind and Body3. Emergence4. Transformation5. Persistence6. The Self as BodilyPart III. Immersion and Subjectivity7. The Composition of Consciousness8. Self-consciousness9. Reflexivism10. Sentience11. Other MindsPart IV. Participation and the First-Person Stance12. The Mind-Body Problem13. Attention, Monitoring and the Unconscious Mind14. The Emotions15. Unity16. The Distinctness of SelvesConclusion: A Theory of SelfBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

"one of the key aims of the comparative philosophical enterprise is to think about familiar problems in a new light, and this aim is admirably fulfilled by Ganeri's book ... It is no exaggeration to say that this book marks the beginning of a completely new phase in the study of Indianphilosophy, one in which a firm grasp of the historical material forms the basis for going beyond pure exegesis, opening up the way for doing philosophy with ancient sources." --Jan Westerhoff, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews