Naturalism and the First-Person Perspective
Science and its philosophical companion, Naturalism, represent reality in wholly nonpersonal terms. How, if at all, can a nonpersonal scheme accommodate the first-person perspective that we all enjoy? In this volume, Lynne Rudder Baker explores that question by considering both reductive and eliminative approaches to the first-person perspective. After finding both approaches wanting, she mounts an original constructive argument to show that a nonCartesian first-person perspective belongs in the basic inventory of what exists. That is, the world that contains us persons is irreducibly personal. After arguing for the irreducibilty and ineliminability of the first-person perspective, Baker develops a theory of this perspective. The first-person perspective has two stages, rudimentary and robust. Human infants and nonhuman animals with consciousness and intentionality have rudimentary first-person perspectives. In learning a language, a person acquires a robust first-person perspective: the capacity to conceive of oneself as oneself, in the first person. By developing an account of personal identity, Baker argues that her theory is coherent, and she shows various ways in which first-person perspectives contribute to reality.
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argue argument Baker belief brain Caro and Voltolini causal efficacy causal powers Chapter cognitive conceive of oneself concept consciousness constituted Daniel Dennett Dennett disenchanted naturalist dispositional property distinction downward causation eliminable entities epistemic example exemplified exist explain express first-person phenomena first-person properties first-person reference genuine subject haecceity hence Heterophenomenology higher-level properties human persons I*-concept I*-properties I*-sentences I*-thoughts ineliminable intentional object intentional stance irreducible Johnston Jones’s Kim’s Kitcher Kornblith language manifestations mental representation messy shopper metaphysical Metzinger 2003a microphysical modus tollens moral responsibility Multiple Drafts model naturalist near-naturalism non-first-person nonpersonal notion object one’s oneself as oneself ontological naturalism Perry Perry’s persistence conditions personal identity phenomenal content philosophers phlogiston primary kind property-constitution property-instances reducible robust first-person perspective robust stage Rosenberg rudimentary first-person perspective scientific naturalism self-concept self-notion sentences Smith’s someone strongly supervene subject of experience subjective experience subpersonal supervenience theory third-person thought tion tive