- This pseudo-Paper is intended as the mechanism to record time spent on the Note 'Personality1' during my Thesis research, as from 2011.
- For the actual time recorded, click on "Paper Statistics" above.
Write-up2 (as at 01/06/2020 13:40:48): Personality
- “She’s not the same person”, means she’s undergone a change of personality. It does not mean that she’s a numerically-different individual. Such is agreed by all but the most extreme (or maybe most consistent) adherents of the psychological view4 of personal identity.
- What are personalities? Are personalities a loose collection of properties and predispositions? Do personalities have persistence conditions, so that saying that someone has or has not changed their personality even makes sense?
- Consider an analogy with weight. It makes sense to ask whether individual x has the same weight at time t1 as at t2. That makes sense because weight is a well-defined property. Of course, for “weight” to be a useful practical concept in this context, there is a tolerance; differences of a few grams don’t count, though those of a few kilograms do. However, “personality” is a much less well-defined concept5, and similar6 ones may count as the same.
- We do allow for our personalities to “evolve” as we mature, so – presumably – we think of them as having persistence conditions of some sort. Too radical a change is shocking to us, leading to the opening quote in this Note.
- I have a separate Note that discusses Multiple Personality Disorder7, some interpretations of which claim that multiple persons inhabit the same human being (as is reflected by the new term “Dissociative Identity Disorder”, though some don’t treat it as a “disorder” at all) while others – more traditionally – think of it as a fragmented personality. I’ve excluded items on this topic from the reading lists below.
- For a Page of Links8 to this Note, Click here. Slightly too many links, especially irrelevant ones, for an updating-run, but useful to cherry-pick from.
- Works on this topic that I’ve actually read9, include the following:-
- "Gladwell (Malcolm) - Personality Plus", Gladwell
- "Kagan (Shelly) - Personal identity, Part II: The body theory and the personality theory", Kagan10
- "Arnold (Keith) - The Subject of Radical Change", Arnold
- "Kagan (Shelly) - Personal identity, Part II: The body theory and the personality theory", Kagan
- "Martinho (Antone) - Pigs, parrots and people: the problem of animal personality", Martinho
- "McGill (V.J.) - Review of Minds, Brains and People by T. E. Wilkerson", McGill
- "Olson (Eric) - Was Jekyll Hyde?", Olson
- "Peacocke (Arthur) & Gillett (Grant) - Persons and Personality: Introduction", Peacocke & Gillett
- "Wilson (Jack) - Personal Identity Naturalized: Our Bodies, Our Selves", Wilson
- A further reading list might start with:-
- "Braude (Stephen) - Persons and Personalities", Braude
- "Feldman (Fred) - Death and the Disintegration of Personality", Feldman
- "Gray (Peter) - Personality", Gray
- "Lawrie (R.) - Personality", Lawrie
- "Mercer (Jean) - Explaining Personality: Soul Theory versus Behavior Genetics", Mercer
- "Nuttall (Anthony) - Personality and Poetry", Nuttall
- "Peacocke (Arthur) & Gillett (Grant) - Persons and Personality: A Contemporary Inquiry", Peacocke & Gillett
- "Rorty (Amélie Oksenberg) - Persons and Personae", Rorty
- "Schechtman (Marya) - Personality and Persistence: The Many Faces of Personal Survival", Schechtman
- "Storr (Anthony) - The Integrity of the Personality", Storr
- This is mostly a place-holder11.
- This is the write-up as it was when this Abstract was last output, with text as at the timestamp indicated (01/06/2020 13:40:48).
- Link to Latest Write-Up Note.
- This, and the follow-up lecture, are interesting for equating the Psychological View of personal identity with a so-called “personality view”, which makes it sound rather silly.
Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)
- Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2020