The Role of the Brainstem in Personal Identity
Olson (Eric)
Source: A. Blank, ed., Animals: New Essays, Philosophia 2016: 291-302
Paper - Abstract

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Author’s Abstract

  1. The main claims of "Olson (Eric) - The Human Animal - Personal Identity Without Psychology" were that we are animals, and that our persistence therefore consists not in psychological continuity1 but in the continuation of our biological lives.
  2. I said further that a human life was possible only if there was a functioning brainstem. Rina Tzinman and Alan Shewmon have challenged this further claim.
  3. I concede that it is probably false, but argue that this does not affect the main claims. It may, however, give rise to a new sort of fission case.


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