Why Our Identity is Not What Matters
Parfit (Derek)
Source: Parfit - Reasons and Persons, January 1986, pp. 245-281(37).
Paper - Abstract

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Author’s Abstract

    Presents actual cases of brain bisection; how we might be able to divide and reunite our minds; what explains the unity of consciousness1 at any time; the imagined case of full division, in which each half of our brain would be successfully transplanted2 into the empty skull of another body; why neither of the resulting people would be us; why this would not matter, since our relation to each of these people contains what matters3 in the prudential sense, giving us reasons to care about these people, which are like our reasons to care about our own future; and how it is hard to believe that personal identity, or our own continued existence, is not what matters4.


Part 3: Personal Identity: Chapter 12

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