- This pseudo-Paper is intended as the mechanism to record time spent on the Note 'Body1' during my Thesis research, as from 2011.
- For the actual time recorded, click on "Paper Statistics" above.
Write-up2 (as at 17/05/2020 22:04:48): Body
- I intend to cover all somatic or corporeal identity-issues under this head, or under one of the two related Notes:-
→ Bodily Continuity4, or
→ Body Criterion5.
I’ve not quite decided how the labour would be best distributed.
- The "physical continuity6" view of personal identity is a wider view of PID than the Bodily Continuity7 view as it encompasses either the body or the brain8, with the latter being more important, so that the physical continuity is satisfied by a BIV9, which would thereby continue your existence should you end up in that unhappy state.
- Somatic continuity is underplayed by philosophers who (while engaged in philosophy) focus more on mental predicates than would those less intellectually-inclined. This is pointed out by Feminist philosophers. For instance, …
- See "James (Susan) - Feminism in Philosophy of Mind: The Question of Personal Identity" and her objections to Bernard Williams’s and Anthony Quinton’s hasty avoidance of the somatic aspects of “body swapping10” – ie. where very different bodies are involved, especially of different sexes; also, the depersonalising effects of trauma.
- However, there may be confusion here between two meanings of “what matters11”. Of course, it matters to the ballet dancer or heavyweight boxer that they are appropriately embodied, but this is beside the point as far as personal identity (in the logical12 sense) is concerned. It matters to me if I lose a leg, but I’m still the same person if I do (because I continue to have the same first-person perspective13 – it’s me that cares that I’ve lost my leg).
- That’s why the “Future Great Pain Test14” ("Unger (Peter) - Identity, Consciousness and Value" / "Williams (Bernard) - The Self and the Future") is so useful – it focuses the mind on whether it will be me that survives15, even in the sad cases where I’d prefer it if it wasn’t.
- Despite the above comments, and while focus on the body (that is, the brain) is an improvement on focus on the mind (considered as psychology abstracted from its physical enabler), focus on “the body” has been superseded in philosophical popularity by focus on the organism16. See animalism17.
- As noted above, the segregation of books and papers between these three related Notes is currently somewhat arbitrary. However, I’ve decided to park the bulk of them under this head unless they specifically relate to “Continuity” or “Criteria”.
- Works on this topic that I’ve actually read18 include the following:-
- "Baker (Lynne Rudder) - Persons and Bodies: A Constitution View", Baker
- "Baker (Lynne Rudder) - Review of 'Bodies and Souls, or Spirited Bodies?' by Nancey Murphy", Baker
- "Benson (Ophelia) - This Isn't My Body", Benson
- "Carter (William) - Our Bodies, Our Selves", Carter
- "Hershenov (David) - Review of Nancy Murphy's 'Bodies and Souls, or Spirited Bodies?'", Hershenov
- "James (Susan) - Feminism in Philosophy of Mind: The Question of Personal Identity", James
- "Medlock (Ben) - The body is the missing link for truly intelligent machines", Medlock
- "Snowdon (Paul) - Philosophy and the Mind/Body Problem", Snowdon
- "Van Inwagen (Peter) - Philosophers and the Words 'Human Body'", Van Inwagen
- "Williams (Bernard) - Are Persons Bodies?", Williams
- A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
- "Atkins (Kim) - Personal Identity and the Importance of One's Own Body: A Response to Derek Parfit", Atkins
- "Ayer (A.J.) - Body and Mind", Ayer
- "Bermudez (Jose Luis), Marcel (Anthony) & Eilan (Naomi), Eds. - The Body and the Self", Bermudez etc.
- "Chisholm (Roderick) - Self-Profile (G. Bodies & H. Persons)", Chisholm
- "Erlandson (Douglas) - Body Transfer and Disembodiment", Erlandson
- "Gert (Bernard) - Personal Identity and the Body", Gert
- "Glover (Jonathan) - Am I My Body?", Glover
- "Harrison (Jonathan) - The Embodiment of Mind or What Use Is Having a Body?", Harrison
- "Hazelton (W. Dean) - Strawson and Persons and their Bodies", Hazelton
- "Hershenov (David) - Organisms and their Bodies: Response to LaPorte", Hershenov
- "Hoffman (Joshua) & Rosenkrantz (Gary) - Souls and Bodies", Hoffman & Rosenkrantz
- "Lakoff (George) & Johnson (Mark) - Philosophy in the Flesh: The Embodied Mind and Its Challenge to Western Thought", Lakoff & Johnson
- "LaPorte (Joseph) - On Two Reasons for Denying That Bodies Can Outlast Life", LaPorte
- "Lennon (Kathleen) - Body Image and Bodily Imaginaries", Lennon
- "Long (Douglas) - The Bodies of Persons", Long
- "Lowe (E.J.) - Persons and Their Bodies", Lowe
- "Murphy (Nancey) - Bodies and Souls, or Spirited Bodies?", Murphy
- "Odegard (Douglas) - Personal and Bodily Identity", Odegard
- "Penelhum (Terence) - 'Bodily Transfer'", Penelhum
- "Pollock (John L.) - Persons and Bodies", Pollock
- "Shaffer (Jerome) - Persons and Their Bodies", Shaffer
- "Shoemaker (Sydney) - Embodiment and Behavior", Shoemaker
- "Taylor (Richard) - Persons and Bodies", Taylor
- "Taylor (Richard) - Persons and Bodies", Taylor19
- "Vesey (Godfrey N.A.) - Are Persons Identified Only By Reference to Their Bodies", Vesey
- "Wartofsky (Marx W.) - Bodies, Body Parts, And Body Language: Reflections On Ontology And Personal Identity In Medical Practice", Wartofsky
- This is mostly a place-holder20.
- This is the write-up as it was when this Abstract was last output, with text as at the timestamp indicated (17/05/2020 22:04:48).
- Link to Latest Write-Up Note.
- Not the same as the other identically-entitled work by Taylor!
Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)
- Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2020