Animalism Unburdened
Blatti (Stephan)
Source: OU Website (now deleted)
Paper - Abstract

Paper StatisticsBooks / Papers Citing this PaperNotes Citing this PaperColour-ConventionsDisclaimer

Author's Abstract

  1. Two theories - animalism1 and Lockeanism - compete for favor in the contemporary debate over personal identity.
  2. The aim of this paper is to criticize the Lockean bias that their capacity for self-consciousness2 renders persons metaphysically unique vis-à-vis other animals - 'unique' in the sense that the conditions whose satisfaction is necessary and sufficient for the persistence of persons differ in kind from the persistence conditions3 of all other animals.
  3. I argue that this uniqueness claim is both philosophically untenable and empirically implausible, and that its failure necessitates a reassessment of the debate between animalism4 and Lockeanism.
  4. The burden, I conclude, should rest with the latter to disprove the former - which is to say, animalism5 ought to be considered the default position in the debate over personal identity.

  1. Introduction: To Reject Animalism6
    → The Simple Argument
  2. The Ancestral Reductio
    → The Adam and Eve Objection.
    → The No Implication Objection.
    → The Evolving Persons Objection.
    → The Disambiguation of ‘Ancestor’ Objection.
    → The Essential Animal Objection.
    → The Identity Objection.
    → Ancestral Reductio
  3. Anthropodenial
  4. Lockean Anthropodenial
  5. Unique in Kind
  6. Unique in Degree
    → 6.1 The Constitution View7
    → 6.2 Metaphysical Insignificance
    → 6.3 Corroboration
  7. Conclusion: Reassigning the Burden


For the full text, see Link (Fair Use).

Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)

  1. Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2019
  2. Mauve: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); © the author(s)

© Theo Todman, June 2007 - June 2019. Please address any comments on this page to File output:
Website Maintenance Dashboard
Return to Top of this Page Return to Theo Todman's Philosophy Page Return to Theo Todman's Home Page