<!DOCTYPE html><HTML lang="en"> <head><meta charset="utf-8"> <title>Noonan (Harold) - The Thinking Animal Problem and Personal Pronoun Revisionism (Theo Todman's Book Collection - Paper Abstracts) </title> <link href="../../TheosStyle.css" rel="stylesheet" type="text/css"><link rel="shortcut icon" href="../../TT_ICO.png" /></head> <BODY> <CENTER> <div id="header"><HR><h1>Theo Todman's Web Page - Paper Abstracts</h1><HR></div><A name="Top"></A> <TABLE class = "Bridge" WIDTH=950> <tr><th><A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_22/PaperSummary_22090.htm">The Thinking Animal Problem and Personal Pronoun Revisionism</A></th></tr> <tr><th><A HREF = "../../Authors/N/Author_Noonan (Harold).htm">Noonan (Harold)</a></th></tr> <tr><th>Source: Analysis, Vol. 70, No. 1 (January 2010), pp. 93-98</th></tr> <tr><th>Paper - Abstract</th></tr> </TABLE> </CENTER> <P><CENTER><TABLE class = "Bridge" WIDTH=800><tr><td><A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_22/PaperSummary_22090.htm">Paper Summary</A></td><td><A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_22/PaperCitings_22090.htm">Books / Papers Citing this Paper</A></td><td><A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_22/PapersToNotes_22090.htm">Notes Citing this Paper</A></td><td><A HREF="#ColourConventions">Text Colour-Conventions</a></td></tr></TABLE></CENTER></P> <hr><P><FONT COLOR = "0000FF"><u>Author s Introduction</u><FONT COLOR = "800080"><ol type="1"><li>In his book, Eric Olson (<a name="13"></a>"<A HREF = "../../BookSummaries/BookSummary_02/BookPaperAbstracts/BookPaperAbstracts_2710.htm">Olson (Eric) - What are We?</A>", 2007) makes some criticisms of a response to the problem of the <a name="1"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_8/Notes_872.htm">thinking animal</A><SUP>1</SUP> (also called the '<a name="2"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_8/Notes_872.htm">too many minds</A><SUP>2</SUP>' or '<a name="3"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_8/Notes_872.htm">too many thinkers</A><SUP>3</SUP>' problem) which I have offered, on behalf of the neo-Lockean <a name="4"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_0/Notes_16.htm">psychological continuity</A><SUP>4</SUP> theorist. Olson calls my proposal 'personal pronoun revisionism' (though I am not suggesting any revision). In what follows I shall say what my proposal actually is, defend it and briefly respond to Olson's criticism. </li><li>The problem of the <a name="5"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_8/Notes_872.htm">thinking animal</A><SUP>5</SUP>, briefly, is that it seems indisputable that <a name="6"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_12/Notes_1265.htm">human animals</A><SUP>6</SUP>, i.e. human beings, or at least, all normal healthy adult human beings, are thinkers. But so, by definition, are persons. However, according to the <a name="7"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_0/Notes_16.htm">psychological continuity</A><SUP>7</SUP> theorist of personal identity, per sons are not human beings (they differ in their persistence conditions). So the <a name="8"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_0/Notes_16.htm">psychological continuity</A><SUP>8</SUP> theory entails the existence of <a name="9"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_8/Notes_872.htm">too many thinkers</A><SUP>9</SUP>. Moreover, it creates an irresoluble epistemic problem: how do I know I am the person sitting here typing this thinking truly that he is a person and not the coincident <a name="10"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_12/Notes_1265.htm">human animal</A><SUP>10</SUP> thinking falsely that he is a person? Finally, if <a name="11"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_12/Notes_1265.htm">human animals</A><SUP>11</SUP>, in addition to persons, are thinkers, they must be persons after all, since their thoughts have whatever complexity and sophistication any ordinary definition of 'person' could require - they have just the same thoughts, after all, as the persons with whom on the <a name="12"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_0/Notes_16.htm">psychological continuity</A><SUP>12</SUP> account, they 'cohabit', so the neo-Lockean's attempt to identify the persistence conditions for persons collapses into incoherence, since he has to acknowledge different kinds of person with different persistence conditions - as it were person-persons and animal persons. </li></ol></FONT><FONT COLOR = "0000FF"><HR></P><a name="ColourConventions"></a><p><b>Text Colour Conventions (see <A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_10/Notes_1025.htm">disclaimer</a>)</b></p><OL TYPE="1"><LI><FONT COLOR = "0000FF">Blue</FONT>: Text by me; &copy; Theo Todman, 2018</li><LI><FONT COLOR = "800080">Mauve</FONT>: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); &copy; the author(s)</li></OL> <BR><HR><BR><CENTER> <TABLE class = "Bridge" WIDTH=950> <TR><TD WIDTH="30%">&copy; Theo Todman, June 2007 - August 2018.</TD> <TD WIDTH="40%">Please address any comments on this page to <A HREF="mailto:theo@theotodman.com">theo@theotodman.com</A>.</TD> <TD WIDTH="30%">File output: <time datetime="2018-08-02T09:47" pubdate>02/08/2018 09:47:20</time> <br><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_10/Notes_1010.htm">Website Maintenance Dashboard</A></TD></TR> <TD WIDTH="30%"><A HREF="#Top">Return to Top of this Page</A></TD> <TD WIDTH="40%"><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_11/Notes_1140.htm">Return to Theo Todman's Philosophy Page</A></TD> <TD WIDTH="30%"><A HREF="../../index.htm">Return to Theo Todman's Home Page</A></TD> </TR></TABLE></CENTER><HR> </BODY> </HTML>