Matter and Sense: A Critique of Contemporary Materialism
Cambridge University Press, Sep 9, 1982 - Philosophy - 130 pages
The assumption of materialism (in its many forms) Howard Robinson believes is false. In his book he presents a very forceful critique of the modern forms that materialism has taken. In telling discussions of the theory of supervenience put forward by Davidson and Peacocke, the central state materialism attributable to Smart, Armstrong and others, Putnam's functionalism, and Rorty's disappearance theory, he shows that, whatever their local inconsistencies, these forms of materialism all overlook or quite inadequately explain elementary and unimpeachable intuitions about our own mental experiences. Robinson concludes with a consideration of the alternative views of the matter of which the mind is held to consist. These arguments will either serve to crystallise for the most part inchoate opposition to materialism among a number of philosophers, and will challenge its proponents to find a more secure defence for the basis of their view.
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Supervenience and reduction
The holism of the mental
Behaviourism and stimulus materialism
The disappearance theory
Reductive theories of perception
turning the tables
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Common terms and phrases
able activity actual affected analysis approach appropriate argued argument Armstrong aspect aware behaviour behaviourist belief body brain c-fibres called causal properties causal theory cause central chapter characterisation claim common concept condition consciousness consider consists constitutes correct deny difficult discussion disposition element entities essentially event example existence experience explain expressed fact feeling firing follows Franklin functionalism further give given grounds hurting identical identify individuals intentional internal interpretation introspection intuitive inventor involve language least logical materialism materialist matter means mental merely mind namely nature necessary neutral normal notion object pain particular perceiving perception philosophers physical possess possible present problem produce properties qualities question realist reason reductive reference regard relation seems sensation sense similar simply someone sort statements stimulus structure suggest tables things tion topic-neutral true whole