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Personal Identity - Research - Proposal

The topic1 I wish to research2 is “Personal Identity”, with the focus3,4,5,6 on the ontology7 of, and persistence criteria for, human persons8 and related sortals9. Since it is a contingent fact that all existents that are universally agreed to be persons are members of the species homo sapiens10, we must start with human beings in deciding what persons are.

I will scrutinise certain basic assumptions that I accept. Firstly, that the “identity” involved in personal identity is the ordinary logical notion11. Secondly, that some form of physicalism12 in the philosophy of mind is true and central to the topic. Thirdly, while it is analytic that survival involves identity, that what matters in survival13 is both physical14 & psychological15 continuity16.

In considering what a person is, I will need to consider somatic17, forensic18 and psychological19 issues, and, in particular, focus on self-consciousness20 and the first-person perspective21. I will need to consider semantic and conceptual22 issues as well as ontological issues.

I will focus on two views, namely Animalism23 and the Constitution View24. I must consider just what Baker and others mean by “constitution”, and evaluate the cogency of the supposedly knock-down “too many minds” argument25 that Olson and others have raised against it.

Key questions are whether or not the concept of a person is a natural kind concept26, and whether the various views take persons sufficiently seriously27. That is, are persons no more than phase sortals28 of certain animals29 or are they ontological novelties, as Baker suggests?

I will consider the usual problem cases, whether obtained from clinical observation30 or thought experiment31, including brain transplant, fission32, fusion33, duplication34, replication35 and metamorphosis36. In particular, I want to compare forward37 and backward psychological continuity and the role of normal causality38 in preserving identity. However, I need to consider whether all talk of first-person perspectives depends on a, presumably non-existent, Cartesian Ego39.

Since I’m particularly averse to “closest continuer”40 theories, I am tempted by four-dimensionalism41 and shared person-stages as a solution to some of the paradoxes where, otherwise, awkward choices have to be made. Since there are acknowledged difficulties for the perdurantist in not being able to count42 tokens of persons and other sortals, I need to address the attempted solutions43.44

I conclude this document (by way of an end-note) by considering the thought experiment of teletransportation45 to rehearse the key issues. I would need to repeat this exercise for all the favourites, including Unger’s Siliconisation46 and Williams’s backup/restore47.48

Note last updated: 26/09/2007 20:41:17


Footnote 1: (Background)

This study originated as a discussion document for my first (and only) tutorial when I was registered for the MPhilStud in 2005. I’ve resurrected it as a research proposal, and added a fair amount of material, but the notes probably attempt too much at this stage. Additionally, I’ve forgotten where the references are from, and haven’t had time to hunt them out. The first few pages are probably important in the context of my current application. The notes are very much “work in progress”. I’ve removed all the acknowledgements of muddle that appeared in the immediately previous edition, but they are to be understood passim.

Note last updated: 12/08/2007 10:17:46


Footnote 2: (Research - Internet Technology)

Another of my interests is a metaphilosophical project to use internet technology in the service of philosophy. Already in this little document I have felt the need for many levels of footnoting. I wish to use this course of study as an experiment in implementing some ideas and developing some technology that’s easy to use and freely available. It strikes me that any philosophical proposition is embedded in a host of other propositions held dear by its espouser, or depends on reasoning that's difficult to display in print. Cascading hyperlinks, contextual pop-ups and the like come to mind as potential aids to lucidity. Making such functions easy to generate and maintain would be difficult, so I see some prototyping coming along as part of my PhD scratch-work. Maybe the whole idea depends on epistemological foundationalism, but I think it’s consistent with coherentism. Either way, it would rather mercilessly expose one's ignorance and biases. I understand that the thesis will have to be written up traditionally.

Note last updated: 12/08/2007 10:17:46


Footnote 3: (Research - Focus)

Vastly more will be researched and written up than can be included in a 70,000-word thesis, though maybe some of this surfeit can be included in a book and in the above-mentioned internet site.

The issues in general philosophy that will require investigation in support of this research include:-

  • Concepts
  • Causation
  • Change
  • Consciousness
  • Free Will
  • Intuition and Thought Experiments
  • Modality
  • Natural Kinds
  • Psychopathology
  • Substance
  • Time
  • Vagueness
  • Etc ….
Additionally, this project overlaps somewhat with a more ambitious one in the Philosophy of Religion.

Note last updated: 12/08/2007 10:17:46


Footnote 4: (Research - Distractions)

While I’m admitting to potential distractions, I must mention another, which is to get an MSc in mathematics by the time I’m 60. While this wouldn’t start until I’d completed my PhD, a fair amount of “warming up” would be required in parallel. I'd like to do some philosophy of mathematics one day, but my handling of the Cambridge Mathematical Tripos was a complete disaster, so abject that I'm in need of some rehabilitation (on the grounds that those that can’t do shouldn’t philosophise). I'd been tempted to return to chess and bridge, but these are fundamentally a waste of time, and I'm hopeful that mathematics (pursued at a much more leisurely pace than the cracking one Cambridge required of its unfortunate undergraduates) might press the same buttons. Maybe being good at mathematics (in the "Cambridge" sense), like being able to play the violin in tune, is just a special skill that some people have and others can never acquire; and that if you don't have it, you should just concentrate on the talents you do have. What worries me is that philosophy is much less constrained by the merciless exposure of falsehoods or rewarded by the discovery of certain truths, and that the discipline of mathematics might be a good foil. Yet people who've excelled in both mathematics and philosophy (eg. Pascal, Leibniz, Russell) don’t seem to have treated philosophy as a poor relation. The two disciplines involve, however, completely different ways of thinking - from the narrowest to the widest possible focus.

Note last updated: 12/08/2007 10:17:46


Footnote 5: (Thesis - Method & Form)

Form of the Argument

  1. The thesis will present an abductive argument (as in my BA Dissertation “Poverty of Stimulus Arguments for Innate Grammar”), that is, an inference to the best explanation of the data.
  2. That’s why I have to consider so many aspects of the subject, so many thought experiments and so much clinical2 data. Into which story does it all best fit?
  3. I may have to reject some recalcitrant thought experiments as ill-formed, but I do not wish to ignore anything significant.
  4. For some time, I have considered Animalism as the most likely account of what human beings are, and I propose this thesis to evaluate the arguments for and against it, using the rival “Constitution View” as a foil.

Method
  • Over the years I have read a lot of books and papers on the topic of Personal Identity.
    1. For some, I have made extensive on-line write-ups.
    2. For others, the write-up is incomplete, or sketchy.
    3. For yet others, I have (more or less) extensively annotated the margin (in so doing ruining many an expensive volume!).
    4. Finally, some have simply been read (and probably forgotten).
  • I have also written numerous Notes on almost every aspect of the subject, though many of them are place-holders awaiting filling-out. These Notes link to the Books and Papers, either explicitly or thematically, and to one another.
  • Follow this Link for an explanation of the various Objects in my Research database, though the Note needs updating in the light of changes since 2010.
  • All this has resulted in a huge unfocussed cobweb of material, which needs to be subjected to some order and completeness. This has started by outlining the Chapters of the Thesis, and specifying the limited subset of the problem I intend to address in detail.
  • For most Chapters, my approach to producing the first draft of the Chapter will be as follows:-
    1. Determine which Notes that I have written are relevant to this Chapter.
    2. Fill out any Note-place-holders with whatever’s in my head!
    3. Use the reading lists associated with these Notes to establish a limited reading list for the Chapter.
    4. Review whatever I’ve written, in whatever format, on the items in the derived reading lists, and make necessary cosmetic changes in the process of evaluating the items.
    5. Segregate6 this reading list into:-
      … Higher versus lower priority,
      … Read versus unread,
      … Annotated (by hand) versus unannotated
      … Those with an Abstract or Note Write-up versus those without
    6. Cull items that are unlikely to be addressed in the next two years and list them as specifically excluded. I may pick up on these at a later stage of the project, but in the short term the culling process will be essential for making across-the-board progress.
    7. Determine why the residue are important and relevant – if they are – and briefly document the reasons.
    8. Migrate any Book or Paper Abstracts that I have written (as distinct from copied from elsewhere) to Write-Up Notes.
    9. If the Book or Paper is important enough, migrate any hand-written annotations to a Write-Up Note, and complete any important incomplete Write-Up Notes.
    10. Write and maintain a Chapter Summary, motivating and summarising the Chapter. Use this to ensure I don’t get side-tracked.
    11. Incorporate the key points of Write-Up Notes into the Topic Notes.
    12. Incorporate the highest level thoughts from the Topic Notes into the Main Text of the Chapter.
  • In principle, these actions should be effected in number sequence, though there will be some iteration, particularly with the last point, which presents my research findings in their most accessible form for outside interested parties.
  • There are many important papers that are on the reading lists that I have not read. At this stage, I do not intend to read them until I have processed all those papers that I have read. This will require discipline!
  • Most of the “detailed working” of the Chapter should be retained in the topic Notes and Write-ups. The Chapter should be fairly high-level at this stage, with hyperlinks to more detailed or supportive work.
  • I need to have some method of evidencing how far along this trial I have got for each Chapter, but this can wait until there is some progress to report.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 2: I am unsure how much of this I have actually attended to – but it is important to keep it in mind.

Footnote 6: I need to develop a method for this – one probably variable depending on the length of the list.

Note last updated: 22/07/2014 22:23:31


Footnote 6: (Thesis - Current Stance)

The purpose of this Note is to provide a periodic refocusing of what my thoughts and beliefs about the topic of Personal Identity currently are. Previous versions can be found from the list below. This version has links to the various other Notes that expand further on the issues raised, and supply extensive reading lists. While very often these Notes are of the “promissory” variety, the links will remind me to improve them as needed.

  1. What are we? This is one of the most important questions we need to ask ourselves. Just what kind of things are we? The question is closely related to a similar one: just what sort of adventures can individuals such as ourselves survive? This second question sheds light on the first for if there are certain contingencies that we think we would – or would not – survive, when a typical member of that kind would not – or would – survive, then that kind may not represent what we really think we are. Of course, we might be wrong in our estimations, but at least this will raise the question.
  2. Why is this not a trivial question? If we look at a dog, say, and ask what it is, the answer to such a question is obvious – it’s a dog! It may be our pet – with a name – a particular individual, but when we ask what kind of thing it is, it’s a member of the species canis lupus. So, when we look at ourselves, the obvious answer is that we are human beings – specifically human animals, members of the species homo sapiens. That is the answer posited by the Animalists, amongst whose number – broadly speaking – I place myself, who accept the biological view of personal identity.
  3. If this is true, then our persistence conditions – the necessary and sufficient conditions for us to continue in existence – are the same as those of other animals – the great apes, say, under which category we fall, biologically speaking. Why is this not the end of the story? Well, this is because – despite being a species of great ape – human beings are special in that we have enhanced cognitive capacities. We are morally accountable. In sum, we are persons, and have a “first person perspective” (FPP) on the world – something most philosophers deny to other animals – and care about our futures and – wantons apart – agonise over our past mistakes. Lynne Rudder Baker claims this perspective makes an ontological difference, rather than being – as I think – a special property of human beings that may or may not be had in particular cases. Baker accuses the animalists of not taking persons seriously. I might just note that there’s a facile and confusing answer to what we are, that is “people”. You may have noticed that I used the technical term “persons” as the plural of “person”. Some philosophers annoyingly use the term “people”, but this confuses the issue. When we say there are ten people in the room, while it is clear in normal circumstances what we mean – dogs don’t count, for instance – but if there happened to be a Klingon and a visiting angel, would they count as people or not? They are – we may suppose – persons, but they are not human persons
  4. Since at least John Locke, this fact of our mental exceptionalism has tempted philosophers to say that it’s our psychological continuity that is more important for our identity-preservation than our physical continuity. This view still has its supporters – not only for those such as Dean Zimmerman and Richard Swinburne who believe in immaterial souls – but for the many who think that psychological continuity and connectedness is constitutive of the identity of persons. It is also implicit in the ideas of the Transhumanists who think that – come the Singularity – we might be capable of being uploaded to computers and thereby live almost forever.
  5. Before proceeding further we have to say something brief and sketchy about identity and persistence. “Identity” – in the sense of “numerical identity” – is a relation a thing holds to itself and to nothing else. A is identical to B if A and B are the very same thing. It is an equivalence relation, being transitive, reflexive and idempotent; and, many of the sticking points in the philosophy of personal identity arise from this fact.
    1. It has nothing to do with “identity” as a sociological concept such as national identity, sexual identity or identification with a particular group.
    2. Also, John may be said “not to be the same person” since he took heroin, but he is still John and still the same individual; it’s just that his personality has changed.
    3. It also has nothing to do with “narrative identity” which is the story we tell about ourselves in an attempt to make sense of our lives.
    4. Finally, it has nothing to do with “exact similarity”: my television may be “identical” to yours, but that doesn’t mean I can have yours if mine breaks. They are – or were, when manufactured – exactly similar, but are distinct.
  6. “Persisting” is what a thing does in continuing in existence. As we noted above, there are what are called “persistence conditions” – specific to a kind of thing – that set out what vicissitudes a thing can survive if it is to remain that very same thing. There are sometimes hard cases, and there can seem sometimes that there is an element of convention: is a particular club still the same clubs after it has lost all its original members, changed its name, and so on? But we can’t accept that our own existence is a matter of convention, though this could seem the case with the once-dominant psychological view of personal identity: just how much psychological connection could I lose with my former self – philosophers wondered – and still be me? However, things seem simpler and more objective for organisms, which persist despite exchanging material with the environment and changing many of their properties, provided they are caught up in a complex and hopefully long drawn-out event (or process) known as a “life”.
  7. In the above I have assumed at least three things.
    1. Firstly, that “things” – or at least some things – exist. There’s a philosophical position known as “Process Metaphysics” (or “Naturalised Metaphysics”) that gives the focus to process rather than ontology, particularly in the case of organisms. I’m not sure how fatal this is to my approach, since I admit that animals are individuated by their lives, which are processes.
    2. Secondly, that we exist. This would seem hardly worth mentioning, other than that certain philosophers – nihilists – have argued that we (whatever we are) or – for similar reasons – various common things like hands – don’t exist.
    3. Finally, I assume that things do indeed persist, at least some of the time.
    I can’t really address these foundational issues here, but will just say a few words on the second issue. There are a lot of interconnected issues to do with the philosophy of time and change, in particular the problem of temporary intrinsics. How can the leaf that was green yesterday be the same leaf if it is brown today? How can the old bald bloke I am today be the same individual as the hirsute teenager all those years ago?
    1. Some philosophers – the exdurantists – say that there’s no relation of identity across time, but merely a weaker counterpart relation analogous to that between an individual and its counterpart in another possible world.
    2. Others – in particular Derek Parfit – have said that even if there is identity across time, it’s not what matters.
    In what follows, I assume that we exist and that we continue to exist self-identically across time and that this identity relation is important. We could not carry on our lives without these assumptions even if – philosophically-speaking – they were false; but I think they are true: I don’t want to distinguish the “strict and philosophical” from the “loose and popular” senses of identity first raised by Joseph Butler. I also assume the standard logic of identity and reject all heretical accounts that are invented from time to time as radical solutions to the difficult questions of persistence. In particular, I reject the view – known as occasional identity that – while (say) I am not identical to my younger self – yet I was that person, just not any more.
  8. Now back to the main thread. Most Anglophone philosophers these days are physicalists (though maybe most non-philosophers are unreflective dualists). This gives physicalist philosophers a problem if they have hopes of post-mortem survival. If the human organism is totally destroyed – eg. by cremation, explosion, or eating of worms – just how does the very same individual get from this life to the next? Christian Materialists have had a go at thinking this through, and acknowledge the difficulties. Peter Van Inwagen attempted to show that it is at least logically possible by having God snatch away the dying body immediately pre-mortem, replacing it with a simulacrum. Dean Zimmerman – while himself a dualist – has suggested a “falling elevator” model to help out his materialist friends, whereby there is immanent causation (by some unknown natural or supernatural process) between the dying body and the resurrection one so that the dying individual escapes in the nick of time to the next world without loss of numerical identity. Others claim that God’s omnipotence is sufficient and is sovereign even over the laws of logic, so that problems raised by identity being an equivalence relation can be overcome by brute force. Maybe so, but without the constraints of logical possibility, we have no way of arguing the matter, so let’s not bother.
  9. However, most Christian materialists prefer an alternative. They recognise that getting from here to the next world with temporal or spatial gaps raises difficult questions as to whether the numerical identity of the individual is preserved but adopt an alternative solution – the Constitution View. On this thesis, the person is distinct from the human animal – “just as” the statue is distinct from its constituting marble – so that the very same person – tagged by the unique “first person perspective” noted above – can be constituted first by its earthly body, and subsequently by its heavenly one.
  10. Some Animalists have what they think of as a knock-down argument against the Constitution View. Eric Olson calls it the “Thinking Animal” argument. If the person and the animal are distinct things, albeit co-located, there are too many thinkers – because the animal can certainly think, as can the person, so we have two thinkers where we thought we had one – which is one problem; and there’s another – how do we know which we are, the person or the animal? I’m not impressed by this argument. There are several “multiple occupancy” conundrums that have been claimed at one time or another to deny the existence of things we are sure do exist. Dion and Theon, Tib and Tibbles, the “problem of the many” and so on. We just need to sort out our rules for counting. Also, the whole question of three- versus four-dimensionalism (4D) – whether a persisting thing is wholly present at a time – or whether only a temporal part is present, the thing as a whole being a “space-time worm” – bears on the question of counting. If different things can share stages – say the person and the human animal, or the statue and the clay – then we have to be careful how we count. In the case of a future fission – whereby two space-time worms share their past stages, but will ultimately diverge – we might not know how many to count at a time, but this will often not matter for practical purposes.
  11. I think the idea of a first-person perspective is important. It is this that provides the pull against animalism when linked to various thought experiments (TEs) that we’ll come on to presently. However, I still don’t like the Constitution View. My objection is that the FPP is a property of something else – like a smile – in this case of a human animal, though the smile might belong to a cat. You can’t take the very same smile from one cat and place on another (it would be at best an exactly similar smile) – let alone have a disembodied smile like that of the Cheshire Cat. Similarly, you can’t take the very same FPP from one body and plop it onto another. True, it might be a qualitatively exactly similar FPP, but not the same one. What’s to stop that FPP being plopped on several resurrection bodies? Which would be numerically identical to me, given that they can’t all be, in the absence of 4D?
  12. What are the temptations for not sticking with the animalist approach – which ought these days to be the default position in the absence of anything more compelling? As noted, the apparent lack of rational expectation of an afterlife is one incentive to look elsewhere, so “elsewhere” is a favourite for those who can’t bear the thought of their selves expiring with their bodies. We’ve noted the Christian dualists and materialists, but what about the Transhumanists? There’s the relatively metaphysically uninteresting case of cryoscopy followed by repair and resuscitation; there we have material continuity, and no possibility of reduplication, though some might claim there is too much outside interference for identity to be preserved. But, what about the “hope” of “you” being uploaded to a computer? There seems to be an idea about that “we” are really software (or data), when we are clearly material beings. If we are software, it is said, then we might “run” on different hardware. I have two issues with this, apart from the immense technical obstacles to be overcome both in “scanning” the “real you” and providing a computer of sufficient power to run your program and the virtual world for you to experience, Matrix-like.
    1. Firstly, what sort of thing is a program? It’s an interesting question whether a program has persistence conditions. Is Windows 10 the same program as Windows 0? Whatever the answer to this question is, a program would seem to be a kind of universal rather than a particular, and “we” are particulars.
    2. This leads to the second issue – a reduplication objection. Say we developed a sophisticated program that could run on an open-ended number of exactly similar robots. No two of these would be numerically identical to one another – they would be distinct, though exactly similar. So, were the program to be a simulation of your brain, it could run – presumably – on an open-ended number of computers – and these computers (or computer partitions) would not be identical to one another, so none of them could be you, as you could only be one of them, and there’s no principled way of saying which. The same objection prevents Star Trek-like teletransportation – were it possible – being identity-preserving. I might also add that no “program” is – in itself – conscious, though a machine that runs it might conceivably be. Mind you, there are arguments here as well – originated by John Searle – at least for digital computers.
    Incidentally, the transhumanists seem to imagine unending computer life as a secular heaven, but it could just as easily be a secular hell.
  13. So, I remain wedded to my view that we are human animals with the persistence conditions of such. “Person” is not a substance term, but an honorific that refers to some substance during some periods of its existence when it has the requisite mental and moral properties to qualify. “Person” is a Phase Sortal (like “teacher”) that – in the case of “person” – applies to most humans most of the time, but need not apply to all humans all the time. There are ethical consequences for this view, but they are not as dramatic as is sometimes urged. Non-persons don’t have moral responsibilities, as is already recognised for demented or infant humans, and all non-human animals. The obverse – that persons allegedly have no moral obligations towards non-persons – or that non-persons have no rights – is the sticking point, and ought to be reflected in a more humane treatment of all non-persons rather than that we might contemplate sending human non-persons as well as non-human non-persons to the slaughter-house.
  14. So, what are the problems for animalists? There are several. Some – like the so-called “corpse problem” (is my corpse me – only dead – if not, where does it come from? It doesn’t have the persistence conditions of an organism) are probably relatively easy to overcome. Recently, I’ve discovered that animalists – like (but for different reasons) those who think we are essentially persons – allegedly have a “fetus problem”. Animalists – saying that we are essentially animals – have (it seems) to say that we were once foetuses – which appears to be what our animal once was. But was this fetus once a proper part of its mother? There’s work currently going on to suggest that this is so – and if so, just when did the new human animal come into existence? However, I don’t think any of this seriously threatens animalism. Maybe animalists should have considered the problem more than they have, but animals do come into existence sometime – presumably by the time of birth at the latest – and that’s enough for an animalist.
  15. The real problems for animalism stem from the force of thought experiments such as the “brain transplant intuition”. An animalist seems forced to say that I would not “go with my brain” in the circumstance where my brain is transplanted into another body, when it seems to most people that I would. The alleged reason for this is that at least some animalists consider the brain to be “just another organ” that we might lose like we might lose a kidney, provided the animal is kept alive. Doubts about this have led some to think that we are not “really” whole human animals but proper parts thereof, maybe not brains as such, but brains and a few other bits. This does seem comical. Just how large am I – would I fit into a hat-box, as Olson asks?
  16. My view is as follows. I am currently (thankfully) a whole human animal. My wife worked in the NHS with amputees, and I think it is right to say that they also are whole human animals, though they lack parts that most of us have. No doubt they could lose more parts – and some diabetics sadly do. So, we might view a “brain in a vat” – one ready for transplant – as a “maximally mutilated” human animal. Maybe – in the case of a brain transplant – a prior animal has fissioned (divided into two) when the brain is extracted and we now have a case of the fusion of two animals (the brain from one fusing with the body of the other). It might be argued that our identity-logic isn’t quite up to deciding who is who in such circumstances, but the stakes seem high enough to demand an answer, for which read on.
  17. I doubt whether the transhumanist hopes of augmenting our physical or mental attributes by effectively converting us into cyborgs is much of a threat to animalism. We don’t worry about our spectacles or our mobiles phones making us any less mammalian. Closer integration with AI applications is only the next step for the extended mind.
  18. So, is there any purchase in thought experiments that putatively have my first person perspective persisting in cases where there is no identity preservation. Could it be the case that “it seems to me” that I have survived some vicissitude – a cerebrum transplant, say – but I am mistaken? Some philosophers argue that this happens every night – I go to sleep, and when I wake up I just assume that I am identical to the individual who got into bed, but how do I know? I might be intellectually convinced by third parties – those other than the sleeper and the waker – one way or another, but how would this affect how it seems to me? Take the teletranportation case. Because of the reduplication objection (unless we are 4-dimensionalists), we should say that numerical identity is not preserved. But – if the technology works, and I am the teletransportee – the individual (or 77 duplicates) would (all) wake up convinced they were me, yet they must be deceived. Thankfully, reduplication is not a problem for whole-brain transplants, but it is for idempotent half-brain transplants, though I think the identity problem there occurs during the fissioning process rather than when the half-brains are implanted.
  19. I continue to think that there is a distinction to be made between forward and backward psychological continuity, though I don’t see how third parties – or even first or second parties – could tell the difference. It makes all the difference to me if I go to sleep and someone else wakes up thinking they are me – as against the normal case where I go to sleep and I wake up. In the former case – for me – there’s just an endless nothingness, of which I know nothing, while in the latter case my experiential life carries on. However, backward psychological continuity – what it feels like looking back – is the same for a survivor and one who only thinks he’s survived.
  20. In the case of the split brain transplant, however, how is it all supposed to work, experientially? Neurosurgery is – even today – carried out on substantially conscious patients, as that way there’s a quick feedback loop to tell the surgeon whether he’s destroying any important areas of cognitive function. What would it be like to “fission”? Maybe I lack the imagination, but it seems to me that my First Person Perspective would go along with whatever was the dominant hemisphere, assuming this “seat of consciousness” is initially located in one hemisphere or the other. If it is not, then it would presumably be destroyed and two new ones would be created in this miracle operation. Either way, this would sit comfortably with the logic of identity which would not be violated, as at most one of the recipients would be me. I can imagine being ripped apart psychologically, but I can’t imagine going two ways.
  21. Of course, there are physical and metaphysical issues with the whole idea of brain transplants – the physical structure of the brain reflects “its” body, and mental faculties are not fully localised, so it’s not just the immensely complex task of “wiring up” the brain to its new body that presents a challenge. Half-brain transplants are even more problematical as in the TEs the brain stem is not split, but only the cerebra are supposed to be transplanted. It’s not clear to me whether there is pervasive confusion here and that these thought experiments are underspecified to the degree of incoherence. Some philosophers – eg. Kathleen Wilkes – think TEs are unhelpful in the philosophy of personal identity, and that our concepts are not up to being probed in this way. I’m not so sure – the TEs are about us, not our concepts.
  22. There is finally the question whether there is any such thing as “the Self”, which is what is supposed to have this FPP. Some contemporary philosophers argue that the Self is an illusion that the brain generates. Others – such as David Hume – have argued; and others – such as Galen Strawson – do argue that when they introspect they find no evidence of a persisting Self. I don’t know where they are coming from, as I can’t think of anything more certain. But a Buddhist-inspired “no-self” view makes the animalist’s task easier, if maybe less interesting.

Note last updated: 24/04/2018 22:22:05


Footnote 7: (Ontology)

Plug Note1

  • Ontology is the study of what exists.
  • In the context of the philosophy of personal identity, ontological questions ask what persons really are.
  • Maybe it’s best first of all to step back, with Locke, and consider the sorts of thing that persist and establish the persistence conditions for these sorts:
    bodies,
    animals,
    human beings.
  • The ontological question is whether – with Locke – we should add persons to this list.
  • Baker holds the view that when a person comes into existence, so does a new entity, of a new kind. A world without persons would be ontologically impoverished.
  • But is this so, or do existing entities simply gain new properties?
  • We must even (on certain definitions of PERSON) ask whether there are any, or whether the term can be eliminated. See:-
    → "Unger (Peter) - Why There Are No People" and
    → "Unger (Peter) - I Do Not Exist".
  • Since Unger’s sorites arguments eliminate all material entities with parts, not just persons (though the elimination of persons on this account depends on the assumption that they are material entities with parts) I, along with the later Unger, wish to reject such conclusions.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read15, include16 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the enormously bloated categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 15:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 16:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 8: (Person)

Plug Note1

  • I must first consider whether the debate on personal identity has been hijacked by a term (whose meaning has changed over time) that can now be dispensed with? Wiggins claims that the Greeks had no term for “person” (I need to re-read the paper by "Trendelenberg (Adolf) - A Contribution to the History of the Word Person" to double-check this). Have we always secretly been talking about human animal identity (probably referring to human beings rather than human animals) when we thought we were talking about something separate, namely persons?
  • I need to start with some conceptual analysis, though this may lead to somewhat arbitrary (ie. merely semantic or culture-relative) conclusions if PERSON isn’t a natural kind concept.
  • I accept Locke’s conceptual distinction between Human Beings (“Men”), Persons and Substances. I accept Locke’s assertion that the rational parrot would be a person, but not a man – the latter essentially involving particular physical characteristics, the former specific mental characteristics.

  • Can any purely mentalistic definition of the concept PERSON, such as Locke’s definition of a person as
      a thinking intelligent being, that has reason and reflection, and can consider itself, the same thinking thing, in different times and places” ("Locke (John) - Of Identity and Diversity" - Essay II.27.2)
    … be correct? I suspect not, because of the corporeal aspects we take as being essential to our self-image.
  • But, when we think of ourselves in this corporeal way, is this qua ANIMAL or qua PERSON. But then, this “qua-ing” can lead to relative identity, and shows how difficult it is for me, at least, to maintain the strict logic of identity in these discussions.
  • Some further, fairly random, thoughts:-
    • We must not ignore potential differences between the Person, the Self and the Individual.
    • I doubt the truth of the contention that one’s Self is the sum of one’s projects, one’s individual “identity”.
    • We must also note the potential for degrees of personhood.
    • Are persons essentially sentient? Or rational? And is rationality, like the mental generally, overstated by philosophers whose favourite habitat it is?
    • What about temporal gaps in sentience & rationality in the life of an individual – does the person pop in and out of existence?
    • What about legal persons: not companies, but the comatose, who still have estates (but then so do the deceased)?
    • How important is “person”, as against “sentient being” in my research concerns? The Cartesians denied sentience to animals and until recently there has been a down-playing of the capacities of animals, particularly their emotional capacities. Consequently, the persistence criteria for sentient non-humans may not have been given the focus they ought. I suspect that many of the thought experiments work just as well if we drop some of the more onerous requirements of personhood in such contexts. Some of the thought experiments play on the thought of “being tortured tomorrow”. While animals may not have the concept TOMORROW, I presume the higher animals have some capacity for anticipating future ills about to befall them. I wonder whether my research concerns should be about all beings that care about the future, whether or not they have a clear concept of it as their future.
  • I will probably start with Dennett’s six criteria of personhood (see "Dennett (Daniel) - Conditions of Personhood") …
    1. rationality,
    2. intentionality – “predicated of”
    3. intentionality – “adopted towards”
    4. reciprocation of the personal stance,
    5. verbal communication and
    6. consciousness
    … in investigating what persons are. See the following essay.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read23, include24 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list, which is enormously bloated and needs considerable pruning.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 23:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 24:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 9: (Sortals)

Plug Note1

  • Using Howard Robinson’s terminology ("Robinson (Howard) - Dualism (Stanford)"), the Ultimate Sort of a thing is that property without which the thing ceases to exist.
  • However, an individual falling under a Phase Sortal can lose the property that defines the phase without ceasing to exist.
  • Ultimate Sorts are presumably the same as Baker’s Primary Kinds, though I can’t remember if she has an analogue of a Phase Sortal.
  • The standard example is of a HUMAN BEING (as the Ultimate Sort) and CHILD (as a Phase Sortal).
  • So, is personhood an attribute of a human being, like “childhood”, that a human being can either possess or lack, or are persons ontologically separate from “their” human beings?
  • Wiggins argues that we can’t talk of the persistence conditions of anything until we know what sort it is.
  • Olson claims that it’s futile to talk of the persistence conditions of persons per se – if human beings, God and angels are all persons – since their persistence conditions (assuming the existence of God and angels, for the sake of the argument) are completely different. This lack of a common set of persistence conditions would indicate that PERSON is not an Ultimate Sort.
  • I (intend to) discuss the sorts that we may fall under in the Note on “What are We”.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read12, include13 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 12:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 13:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 24/04/2018 08:58:34


Footnote 10: (Homo Sapiens)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 12:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 13:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 28/02/2018 18:40:19


Footnote 11: (Logic of Identity)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 9:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 10:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 03/02/2018 00:20:10


Footnote 12: (Physicalism)

Plug Note1

  • Basically, I reject any form of mind-body dualism or immaterialist monism. There are no souls, if a soul is an immaterial substance separable from a body.
  • But, I need to investigate Dean Zimmerman’s recent “emergent dualism” (see "Zimmerman (Dean) - Reply to Baker's 'Christians Should Reject Mind-Body Dualism'"), despite the fact that his main motivation is a desire to conform to a traditionalist reading of Christian doctrine.
  • Given my focus on physicalism, I will need to give some attention to the identity and persistence criteria of material objects as such.
  • There are too many versions of physicalism for its endorsement to deliver much without clarification, so I will need to pursue the matter in some detail.
  • For the moment, I simply wish to note (or claim) that:
    1. “The physical” encompasses both body and brain (ie. the physical criterion of personal identity would be satisfied if continuity of brain were essential for the persistence of the person).
    2. The brain is more important than other physical organs for the persistence of the human being or the human person.
  • Consequently, I think it worthwhile to conduct a detailed investigation into the functional roles of the various parts of the brain, CNS (Central Nervous System) and PNS (peripheral ...) and how these and the residue of the body are coupled together. Such matters may be relevant to the realism of the various thought experiments about brain transplants, cerebrum transplants and such-like.
  • It is, however, debatable how important these details are. For example, debates seem to continue about the possible identity of pain and C-fibre-firing, when it’s now acknowledged by all the participants in such debates that the physical realisation of pain-states in mammals requires a lot more than C-fibres. The assumption seems to be that the details don’t matter and that similar arguments could be constructed whatever the physical realisation of mental states might be.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read12, include13 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 12:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 13:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 13: (Survival)

Plug Note1

  • I need to distinguish two interpretations of Parfit according to whether survival and identity are or are not equated.
  • Also, by “survival” does Parfit mean the same as other philosophers mean by “persistence”?
  • A standard Parfitian claim is that “what matters in survival is not identity”. Parfit is right that the issue isn’t necessarily “am I (A) identical to B or C”, but “will I have what matters in survival if B, or C, or both survive”, and that the reason the two questions are elided is that they don’t usually come apart.
  • However, there’s incoherence in an expression such as “will I survive as B”, if I’m not supposed identical to B, since survival and this use of the personal pronoun seem to imply identity.
  • Also in an expression such as “will I have what matters”, to what does the “I” refer if I’m assumed not to persist? To my present self only? I might now see that I might be happy that a certain future state of affairs, not involving me, appertains, but I would then not have what matters, nor indeed have anything at all.
  • So, I think we do need to distinguish, with Parfit, identity from what matters in survival. His idea seems to be that we can have what matters in survival without surviving.
  • Parfit’s concerns are fundamentally ethical, with Buddhist tendencies. He’s trying to remove self from ethics and persuade us that we don’t need self, and therefore don’t need self-identity.
  • Parfit’s claim, which I believe to be false, is that we don’t really care about our persistence as such, but about the survival of our projects, which can as well or better be prosecuted by others. But we are more selfish than that, and in many circumstances justifiably so.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read7, include8 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 7:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 8:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 14: (Physical Continuity)

Plug Note1

  • In addition to considering just what contiguity and causal conditions a physical object needs to satisfy in order to persist, I need to consider a couple of related issues:
    1. Intermittent Objects: can things go in and out of existence? Does the disassembled bicycle still exist in a dispersed state?
    2. Mereology: is the content of any region of spacetime – whether spatially or temporally contiguous or disconnected – or a thing?
  • What do decisions here have to say about the possibility of resurrection or reincarnation? Is a physicalist able, even in principle, to allow the possibility of disembodied survival, resurrection or reincarnation, given the need for a continuing physical substance to which the individual is identical? Some Christians are physicalists, and Peter Van Inwagen has (as a wild speculation - see "Van Inwagen (Peter) - The Possibility of Resurrection") God miraculously swapping out and preserving our corpses so he can resurrect the same individuals in due course.
  • I need to consider (but expect to reject) such suggestions.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read9, include10 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 9:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 10:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 05/02/2018 20:02:24


Footnote 15: (Psychological Continuity)

Plug Note1

  • Following on from discussions on survival, maybe the way to put things is that without psychological continuity I might survive, but not with what matters to me in survival.
  • If PERSON is a phase sortal of HUMAN ANIMAL, can there be sequential but different persons within the same animal (as Lewis suggests, though not from the perspective of animalism, in his “Methuselah” case) or can there be different and encapsulated First Person Perspectives (either synchronically or diachronically) within the same animal?
  • “Person” may indeed come apart from “animal”, but even then, the person cannot “float free” of the animal, but supervenes upon it.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read12, include13 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 12:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 13:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 24/04/2018 11:26:53


Footnote 16: (Continuity)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 6:
  • I don’t think this “gradual” means “slowly”, though this will usually be the case.
  • What is needed is for there to be many intermediate steps to allow continuity.
  • Each change involved in each of the steps has to be “minor”.
  • All this is somewhat vague.
Footnote 14:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 15:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 05/02/2018 20:02:24


Footnote 17: (Body)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 15:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 16:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.
Footnote 17:
  • Not the same as the other identically-entitled work by Taylor!

Note last updated: 12/03/2018 21:17:17


Footnote 18: (Forensic Property)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 11:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 12:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 16/02/2018 00:30:14


Footnote 19: (Psychology)

Plug Note1

  • If we adopt the Psychological View of Personal Identity – which I don’t – then it is psychological factors that are important in determining our persistence criteria.
  • We must consider not just memory but other psychological capacities, including character.
  • However, while these factors do matter to the survivor, they don’t matter in the binary sense of “have I survived or not”.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read7, include8 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 7:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 8:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 20: (Self-Consciousness)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 6:
  • It appeared in The Week, but it seems to be a popular one.
  • See Link (https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/939545-not-only-are-selves-conditional-but-they-die-each-day).
  • I’m not yet clear of the context: the book is on order.
Footnote 7:
  • Which has little to do with self-consciousness other that the book’s title.
Footnote 12:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 13:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 24/04/2018 00:12:58


Footnote 21: (First-Person Perspective)

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In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 6:
  • I suppose either both or neither might count ontologically.
  • Also, both might have enormous significance, yet not imply that an ontologically distinct entity had come on the scene.
Footnote 18:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 19:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 13/02/2018 00:07:12


Footnote 22: (Concepts)

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In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 9:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 10:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.
Footnote 11:
  • I’ve also added a few interesting but maybe tangential papers!
  • These may expand the scope of this Note.

Note last updated: 04/02/2018 11:29:46


Footnote 23: (Animalism)

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In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 33:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 34:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • In the reading lists that follow, I’ve intended to exclude items whose primary “home” is in another Note, but have probably included a lot that might feature in Click here for Note. .
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.
Footnote 35:
  • I’ve not explicitly listed the individual chapters, though my comments and write-ups are variable.

Note last updated: 22/01/2018 21:12:58


Footnote 24: (Constitution View)

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In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 11:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 12:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.
Footnote 13: This list needs a review.

Note last updated: 06/02/2018 23:35:31


Footnote 25: (Constitution View - Objections)

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In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 15:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 16:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.
Footnote 17:
  • Argues against human uniqueness.
  • No doubt there are a number of other books of this ilk.

Note last updated: 06/02/2018 23:35:31


Footnote 26: (Natural Kinds)

Plug1 Note






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 3: These are rather old, and need careful reviewing

Note last updated: 05/04/2016 23:19:41


Footnote 27: (Taking Persons Seriously)

Plug Note1

  • Baker accuses animalists of “not taking persons seriously”.
  • But, how seriously should they be taken (in metaphysics)?
  • Probably what really matters ontologically is the possession of a conscious (though not necessarily self-conscious) perspective. This is what we must take seriously.
  • Baker would argue that there exists an ontological difference at this stage too … but, why is the first-person perspective so very important – all that worrying about death?
  • Buddhists are trying to lose this sense of self. Do all cultures have it?
  • See "Wong (David) - Relativism" for the Chinese view, which takes the community more seriously than the individual.
  • Whether we ought to take moral or rational beings extra seriously is the point at issue.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read8, include9 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 8:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 9:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 28: (Phase Sortals)

Plug Note1

  • See under Sortals for the introduction of the concept PHASE SORTAL. I seem to have misappropriated the term. In its standard usage (I am told), a phase sortal is a biologically-motivated term. The clearest examples are of individuals that metamorphose; for example the butterfly: egg to larva (caterpillar) to pupa (chrysalis) to adult (butterfly). The caterpillar is a phase sortal of the organism, with clear spatio-temporal boundaries. My standard example is of CHILD, which is a (vaguely-boundaried) biological phase of the substance sortal HUMAN BEING.
  • An example of a possible human phase sortal that is a non-person is INFANT. This example might be especially relevant to the topic, because “infant” is derived from the Latin in-fans “without speech”, and the capacity for speech is often claimed to be an essential prerequisite for being a person.
  • Any suggestion that the concept PERSON is “no more than” a phase sortal of an umbrella concept isn’t intended to imply unimportance. Rather, simply that persons might not form a kind (and in particular a natural kind), nor be substances, but that personhood might be a property of substances (of animals, for instance).
  • What about “periodic” phase sortals such as STUDENT? A human being can “pop in and out of” studenthood by registering or deregistering, but he can’t do this with childhood. Which model suits personhood? See the discussion of intermittent objects.
  • However, if the above suggestion that the concept PHASE SORTAL is biologically motivated is correct, a purely social concept such as STUDENT is not a phase sortal in this sense, and PERSON might not be either. I could, of course, invent a new term of art.
  • All roads seem to lead to Wiggins (Paul Snowdon refers to him a lot in the context of Animalism, though I seem to remember that Eric Olson thinks Wiggins isn’t a true Animalist, but a supporter of the psychological view).
  • I need to read
    → "Wiggins (David) - Sameness and Substance" (possibly, but especially) …
    → "Wiggins (David) - Sameness and Substance Renewed"
    with some urgency; also, maybe,
    → "Wiggins (David) - Metaphysics: Substance" in "Grayling (Anthony), Ed. - Philosophy 1 - A Guide Through the Subject".
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read15, include16 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 15:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 16:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 29: (Animals)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 16:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 17:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.
Footnote 18:
  • Ie. excluding those already read.
  • I’ve focused on books rather than papers.

Note last updated: 29/01/2018 21:24:29


Footnote 30: (Clinical Observations)

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  • Clinical observations may be a better guides than thought experiments as test cases for our theories of personal identity, because at least we know they represent a real possibility.
    • One of the main objections to TEs is that they are underspecified and confused.
    • However, even with actual clinical observation, we still have the trouble of the correct interpretation of the clinical data, which affects the conclusions we can draw from it.
    • See "Wegner (Daniel) - The Illusion of Conscious Will" for the sort of controversy that arises in these circumstances.
      → [I need to explain this a bit further!]
  • Examples of relevant clinical cases are
    Commissurotomy patients and
    → Those with Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD).
    Is a commissurotomy or MPD patient “home to” one or two persons?
  • I argue elsewhere (where?) that PATIENT – like PERSON – is a Phase Sortal of the Ultimate Sortal HUMAN BEING.
    • One human being can simultaneously be multiple patients (dental and chiropody, for instance), or a multiply-enrolled student.
    • Does this situation mirror those of our more seriously damaged human beings?
  • One thing can’t be two things (in the sense of “be identical to”), even if the two things are of a different kind to the one thing.
    • The logic of identity would force the “two” things to be identical.
    • But the Phase Sortal approach doesn’t force this violation of logic, so could a human being with split personality literally be the home of two, or three, or seven different thinking beings? (Wilkes12).
    • I’m inclined to say “yes”, but what impact does that have on animalism?
  • This topic (and its reading list) overlaps with several others, some of which have already been mentioned:-
    • Commissurotomy,
    • Dicephalus,
    • Multiple Personality Disorder,
    • Psychopathology.
  • Currently, there is no categorised reading-list for this topic. A reading list would be mostly covered by the above Notes. Currently I can otherwise only think of:-
    1. "Harris (Henry) - An Experimentalist Looks at Identity", Harris, 1995
  • This is mostly a place-holder.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 12: Presumably in +BB+.

Note last updated: 10/04/2017 23:38:24


Footnote 31: (Thought Experiments)

Plug Note1

  • In general, I’m in favour of using thought experiments in philosophy.
  • However, I’d like to consider, following "Wilkes (Kathleen) - Real People: Personal Identity Without Thought Experiments", whether some thought-experiments in pursuit of clarifying issues in personal identity
  • Sometimes our intuitions are unreliable as to the truth or possibility of what we intuit.
    • Some doubt the possible phenomenal consciousness of artificial systems, however complex, but is this anything other than a fallacious argument from personal incredulity?
    • Descartes argued for the real distinction between mind and body by thinking he could imagine their separation, but could he really?
    • Sometimes, our intuitions may give us no clue one way or the other, or only a gentle lead (as Williams seems to be suggesting in "Williams (Bernard) - The Self and the Future").
  • "Snowdon (Paul) - Personal Identity and Brain Transplants" gives a helpful critique of Wilkes’s and Johnston’s arguments (see "Johnston (Mark) - Human Beings") against thought experiments.
  • "Wilson (Jack) - Beyond Horses and Oak Trees: A New Theory of Individuation for Living Entities" thinks that TEs should be avoided where possible, and real examples used – as at least in actual circumstances we know that the situation is possible (“actual implies possible”), and we know, or can discover, all the background conditions.
  • The trouble is that there may not be enough naturally-occurring situations, or practically or ethically available experimental circumstances, to provide the occasions to put maximum pressure on our concepts.
  • Then again, were our concepts designed to be put on the rack? What would their failure really tell us?
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read4, include5 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 4:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 5:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 32: (Fission)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 26:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 27:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 15/02/2018 20:54:14


Footnote 33: (Fusion)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 13:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 14:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 15/02/2018 22:00:29


Footnote 34: (Duplication)

Plug Note1

  • Duplicate objects are – to use the definition in "Sider (Ted) - Naturalness, Intrinsicality, and Duplication" – “exactly similar, considered as they are in themselves”.
  • There is considerable overlap between this topic and two other topics:-
    Replication, which may well be the same thing (though not restricted to a mere doubling), and
    Reduplication Objections
  • The motivation for this Note comes mainly from the above Reduplication objections – where some putative change appears to preserve identity, but cannot for logical reasons, as explained in that Note.
  • If I accept Lewis’s perdurantist thesis, the straightforward objection to the identification of the duplicate with the original is undermined – they simply share stages. However, there are still causal chain problems to address, and those of physical continuity.
  • While cloning falls under this head, there is no identity preservation, even under a perdurantist thesis, as there are no shared stages, just shared genetic material.
  • While I have a categorised reading-list associated with this topic, there’s not much that’s relevant other than works quoted above and:-
    1. "Sidelle (Alan) - Finding an Intrinsic Account of Identity: What is the Source of Duplication Cases?"
  • This is mostly a place-holder.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.

Note last updated: 31/08/2017 19:35:02


Footnote 35: (Replication)

Plug Note1

  • Replication arises where an obvious copying process takes place. I would claim that Teletransportation falls under this head. I'm currently not clear whether there's a distinction between replication and duplication, other than that duplication would seem to be restricted to doubling, whereas replication is more open-ended.
  • Does amoebic division count as replication? When an amoeba divides, this is not a case of fission but of reproduction. So, there are three amoebae involved – the original one and the two daughters. This is not the same situation as in fission.
  • The above said, does this case depend:
    1. on how the case is described and
    2. on how – empirically – the replication occurs?
  • If the amoebic division occurs by budding of a daughter, so that we can continually "track" the parent, then we have straightforward reproduction. If the division is symmetrical, the case could be correctly described as replication, though maybe on a perdurantist view we originally had two coincident amoebae that both persist.
  • We need to watch out for closest continuer descriptions of the case.
  • I don’t really have a categorised reading-list for this Note; while there is one, it is empty. Any reading will be covered under a sister Note of this one: Reduplication Objections.
  • This is mostly a place-holder.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.

Note last updated: 31/08/2017 19:35:02


Footnote 36: (Metamorphosis)

Plug Note1

  • Metamorphosis involves a radical and fairly rapid – by comparison with “business as usual” growth and maturation – change of bodily form in the same2 individual. Catastrophic injury doesn’t count.
  • Tadpoles to frogs and caterpillars to butterflies are, in seems to me, different kinds of cases of metamorphosis. If there is anything it’s like to be a caterpillar or a tadpole, the caterpillar’s experience of metamorphosis will differ from that of the tadpole’s, as the caterpillar transforms into the butterfly via goo, whereas the tadpole’s metamorphosis into the frog is continuous with it remaining an active organism.
  • Presumably there’s no more a true metamorphosis in tadpole to frog than there is in fetus to neonate in humans and mammals generally? The difference between the maturation of a tadpole and fetus is simply the environment and food-source?
  • If the account of Sortals is correct, metamorphosis involving a change of Ultimate Sortal is a logical impossibility (in the sense of the very same thing metamorphosing as in the frog to prince case). I suppose, in this last case, we might have the Ultimate Sortal as ORGANISM of which FROG and PRINCE (or HUMAN BEING) are Phase Sortals, but then, what is an Ultimate Sortal in one context is a Phase Sortal in another. Is this an issue?
  • How should the (supposed) case of bodily changing to be expected of Christian at Christ’s return be understood? In that case – see 1 Corinthians 15:52 – rather than dying and being resurrected to a new body, the living body is “… changed. In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump”. Is this a case of metamorphosis?
  • "Bynum (Caroline) - Metamorphosis and Identity" is presumably the jumping-off point for this topic.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read12, include13 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 2:
  • This begs the question somewhat!
Footnote 12:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 13:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 37: (Psychological Continuity - Forward)

Plug Note1

  • I think there’s a conceptual difference between:-
    1. Forward psychological continuity, and
    2. Backward psychological continuity.
  • Imagine the case where (on an endurantist account of persistence), I’m put into a duplicating machine, but something goes wrong and my body is destroyed by the duplication process, though my duplicate wakes up perfectly happily. Then, it seems to me, I would never wake up, and would have no experience beyond entry to the duplicating machine. I have no forward psychological continuity. But my duplicate does have backward psychological continuity.
  • Any duplicate of me, looking backward, would consider himself to be “me”, having my memories, abilities, plans and so forth, and a body looking just like mine. But, would I ever wake up as the duplicate? My intuition on the endurantist account, as I have said, is that I would not, though I suspect that on the perdurantist account, this might be seen as a case of fission in which I might wake up twice, provided we consider that the right sort of causality is in place.
  • But, what gives forward continuity of consciousness in the normal case of sleep and temporary unconsciousness? I cannot know “from the inside” that when I awake I’m the same human being as went to sleep in my bed. The reason I believe this is for external reasons: duplication is not physically possible (or at least practical), and in any case I have no reason to believe it happened to me last night.
  • This seems a very important issue to me, and I need to make more of it. For example, in teletransportation thought experiment, it seems to me that a new person wakes up, but I don’t, nor do I experience anything, though the new person claims to be me. Incidentally, it’s not just a new person, but a new human being.
  • This is the sort of question that the Logical Positivists would denounce as meaningless, as no empirical evidence can decide it.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read14, include15 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 14:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 15:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 05/02/2018 20:02:24


Footnote 38: (Causality)

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In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.

Note last updated: 10/04/2017 23:38:24


Footnote 39: (Cartesian Ego)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 6: Footnote 13:
  • Or, rather than “embodied by”, “embodied “as”?
Footnote 16: Footnote 19:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 20:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 03/02/2018 23:47:02


Footnote 40: (Closest Continuer)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 10:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 11:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.
Footnote 12:
  • When considering duplication issues with double-hemispherectomy & transplant, “closest continuer” resolutions to the problem (amongst other suggestions) are rejected.
Footnote 13:
  • The “closest continuer” theory as a solution to the “split brain” fission puzzle is considered in Sections 3 & 4.
Footnote 14:
  • Brief discussion of Hershenov’s claim that Zimmerman’s “Falling Elevator” model of physical resurrection is effectively a “closest continuer” theory.
Footnote 15:
  • Olson’s rejection of “closest continuer” solutions to the double-hemispherectomy & transplant problem (for the psychological view).
  • His objection isn’t to the incoherence of the “closest continuer” as such, but that the hemispheres might be equipollent, leading to no “closest continuer”.
Footnote 16:
  • The rejection of “closest continuer” theories is the 10th of Van Inwagen’s presuppositions.
  • Decisions of persistence are intrinsic. No outside facts – such as the existence of a better candidate – can affect whether something has persisted.
Footnote 17:
  • Zimmerman discusses the “closest continuer” theory extensively in a reply to Hasker.
  • It seems that the “Falling Elevator” model of resurrection requires both acceptance of the “closest continuer” theory and the rejection of the “only X and Y” principle.
Footnote 18:
  • Consideration of “closest continuer” theories in Section 2.
Footnote 19:
  • Description and elaboration of Nozick’s “closest continuer” theory, followed by …
  • Its application to duplication puzzle-cases.
Footnote 20:
  • Rejects the “closest continuer” theory as a solution to the problem posed by putative uploadings of human brains to computers.
Footnote 21: Footnote 22:
  • The “closest continuer” theory is discussed in Section 4.

Note last updated: 24/04/2018 11:16:48


Footnote 41: (Perdurantism)

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In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 14:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 15:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 42: (Counting Persons)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 4:
  • No doubt if this fanciful event could be planned or anticipated we would count differently.
Footnote 21:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 22:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 07/02/2018 19:42:14


Footnote 43: (Ship of Theseus)

Plug Note1






In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 10: See also "Tanksley (Charley) - The Mereological Constancy Of Masses".

Note last updated: 14/01/2017 20:18:14


Footnote 44: (Methuselah)

Plug Note1

  • I’m unimpressed by Lewis’s solution to the Methuselah thought experiment, which seems to be a reductio ad absurdum of the psychological connectedness approach to personal identity.
  • Can there really be an uncountable infinity of persons residing in a single body? But why not? Lewis thrives on pressing credibility.
  • The “no prudential concern for the future” argument also seems to be another reduction of the connectedness approach. If I’m not the same person as the future occupant of my body, why make provisions for him. Yet, he’ll share my first-person perspective and I’ll be psychologically continuous with him.
  • Of course, Lewis’s model (of a 150-year cut-off for psychological connectedness) is admittedly too crude. Parfit sees temporally extended persons as persons of reduced degree11, according to the degree of connectedness. However, this seems to destroy the natural growth and maturation of the person.
  • I’m still the same person as was my immature self, even though most of my hopes and desires have changed. If I’m in control of my life, I own these changes, brought them about, and often think them for the good.
  • What about where I don’t own them, but regret my corruption (moral and physical)? It’s still my corruption that I regret. I’m the same human being.
  • It depends what concept we want to use the term “person” for. We always have to distinguish personality from persons.
  • Finally, consider Saul Kripke on individuation by origin. Is this a possible objection to overlapping persons? If a person’s origin is what individuates it, how is it possible for persons to have vague, origins as in an un-simplified Methusalah case? There are two issues here that need spelling out.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read19, include20 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 11:
  • I need to re-read Parfit to see what he means (assuming he said this!).
  • I have a Note on Degrees of Personhood, but it is talking about something else, I think.
Footnote 19:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 20:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 45: (Teletransportation)

A Case Study - “Beam me up Scottie”: There are two obvious supposed mechanisms for teletransportation:

  1. Transferring both matter and information; or simply
  2. Transferring information, utilising local matter.
I gather that in the show itself, it's plasma that's transmitted, but as this is unlikely to get to its destination without causing havoc, the information-only transfer is more reasonable. However, even in the plasma-transfer case, I'm unconvinced that I'd survive, for two reasons:
  1. Some things (eg. bicycles) can survive disassembly and re-assembly, but only if they are disassembled into recognisable parts. If a bicycle is disassembled into iron filings and latex goo, and then re-manufactured, we might be reluctant to say it's the same bicycle.
  2. As a matter of empirical fact, fundamental particles are not distinguishable, so the labelling cannot be undertaken even in principle. If it doesn't matter which particle fits where, provided they are of the right sort, the case seems to collapse into the information-transfer variant.
We now turn to the information-transfer case. My main worries initially here have to do with the possibility of duplicates. We all know that a counterfeit, however well done, isn't the same as the original. The logic of identity is constraining. A thing is identical to itself and to nothing else, so if a thing is identical to two "other" things, these "two" must be identical to one another. Given that my two beamed-up versions aren't identical to one another, at least one of them can't be identical to me. And, since they are exactly similar, why choose one rather than the other? So, neither is me. Both are exactly similar to me, but identity is to be distinguished from exact similarity. This situation is similar to the case where the "original" human being isn't destroyed. This sort of thought experiment is referred to as the branch-line case. Canonically, it's where I've only a few days left to live (because the scanner has done me a mischief). Would I be happy in the knowledge that my duplicate would go on and on, and take up with my partner and career where I left off? Is this as good as if I survived? Not likely, unless we’re Parfitian saints! Note, however, that the case is tendentiously described (ie. as teletransportation) to lead to this seemingly obvious conclusion. The "main line" candidate would be perfectly happy that his rival back home was about to perish.

Philosophers split into two main camps in response to these situations (though - jumping ahead a little - even if perdurantism is true, we still might not have the teletransportation of a persisting individual, because of the wrong sort of causal link leading to a lack of forward continuity of consciousness, or even of physical continuity). So there are multiple bifurcations, but we keep things simple here and just follow those who think that I either survive or have what matters in survival:-
  1. 4-dimensionalists (Perdurantists): A thing is really a 4-dimensional worm through space-time, which consists in a set of instantaneous 3-D stages. In this situation, where multiple teletransportations occur, all copies are me. They are different 4-D worms, but they share all their pre-beaming-up stages. There were always at least 2 people present.
  2. 3-dimensionalists (Endurantists) claim that while I'm not identical to the beamed-up person, yet I have what matters in survival.
Note that there's a modal argument to the effect that even in the usual case where only one copy is beamed up, and the original is destroyed, because there might have been multiple copies, this means that identity isn't preserved even in the case where there's only one teletransportation-result created. This seems to lead to paradox. Imagine the situation - I'm beamed up and think I've survived, and am then told that the machine has malfunctioned and produced a duplicate, and hence, contrary to my experience, I haven't survived after all! Unfortunately, some philosophers go along with a "closest continuer" theory of identity across nasty cases of fission or fusion. I'm identical to (or even “survive as”) the continuer that most closely continues me, either psychologically or physically, according to taste. How can my survival depend on what happens to someone else, the thought goes? While this does seem odd, in fact you can’t trust the feelings of the teletransportees – for even if multiple copies are made, they all subjectively feel like the original.

There are two questions outstanding.
  1. Do I survive the transfer? And, if I don’t,
  2. Does it matter that I'm not identical to the post-beamed person?
I’m here ignoring the (as it seems to me) illogical “survival without identity” option.

We have seen that it is possible that it appears to me that I survive, yet I do not. On the endurantist view, the logic of identity means that I cannot trust my experience. So, it seems possible that the person “waking up” is not me. I never wake up – in the sense that I lose consciousness, but never experience a re-awakening - but someone else with my past in his memories is created in my stead.

So, is survival what matters? Well, on the perdurantist view, it’s not even sufficient for me to have what matters. Imagine the case where the machine goes haywire and 1,000 exactly similar teletransportees are created. All these share my pre-teletransportation stages, so are all me (except that “I” was always 1,000 co-located individuals – and maybe more – who knows how often the machine may go wrong in the future!). In this case 1,000 individuals would be squabbling over the same friends, relations, job etc, and that might be rather a nuisance. However, this isn't fundamental to whether I do or don't survive. If I'm a violin virtuoso or a body-builder, I might not find it much fun surviving as a brain in a vat, but that would just be tough. The standard philosophical test is the "future great pain test". I believe that the future continuant will be me, whether I like it or not, if I'm as terrified of that continuant being tortured as I would be if I were to be tortured in the normal course of events. Our BIVs would be even more upset at the prospect of torture-simulation being fed into their brains than at the loss of their beautiful bodies. Our fears have to be moderated by logic, however. But this is no worse than ignoring a revivalist rant on Hellfire. If I’m not identical to a particular teletransportatee, I won’t survive, and if I don’t survive I won’t feel anything. I may have a moral obligation not to land others in a pickle, but it won’t be the selfish problem of avoiding landing myself in one.

I can imagine fissioning, by the bungled-beaming-up process, into 1,000 continuants, none of which (on a 3-D view) is identical to me, but all of whom seem to themselves to continue my first-person perspective. I can imagine (just about) going into the machine, and coming out again 1,000 times (when the life-histories of the 1,000 then start to diverge). While the psychologies of the 1,000 are initially identical, they are not connected to one another, though they are each connected continuously to the pre-beamed-up person. So, if even one of them were to be threatened with torture, I'd be terrified if I thought that that one (even amongst all the others) would be me, in the sense that my experience continues into that body.

But, do I survive? I don't think I do, for reasons given above. It’s not that I reject perdurantism, it’s just that even accepting perdurantism there’s too radical a discontinuity. It's clear that a duplicate, looking backwards, wouldn't be able to tell apart the situation from the normal one of (say) just having woken up after a dreamless sleep. However, I imagine it's possible (even in a supposedly successful teletransportation) for there to be nothing it's like for me after the beaming - it's as though I never woke up, though someone else woke up thinking he was me. This would be a tragedy but, we'd never know about it, because (on this hypothesis) I wouldn't be around to tell the tale, and my duplicate would claim everything was fine (he remembered going to bed and waking up, as it were).

This worries me slightly about our every-night bouts of unconsciousness. How do I know that “the me” that wakes up is “the same me” that went to sleep, and would it matter if it wasn't? Was my mother right in saying “it’ll be all right in the morning”, in the sense that I’d have no further experience of the current problem, or indeed of anything at all? Is this worry parallel to beam-me-up case? Or is sleep a pain-free death?

I suspect the answer to these questions is that for a physical thing to persist, there needs to be appropriate physical continuity, and this continuity guarantees its persistence (though this intuition is a bit of a feeble response). On the assumption that my brain supports my conscious experience, this is enough to reassure me that, as it's the same continuing brain in my skull overnight, it's the same me that's conscious in the morning. I don't have the same reassurance in the case of beaming-up. So, I wouldn't go in for it, even if it came to be seen as a cheap form of transportation.



Footnote – December 2009

There’s a 10-minute animated cartoon - John Weldon's "To Be" – that discusses the question of teletransportation. It’s presently on U-Tube at Link (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdxucpPq6Lc). In it, a mad scientist invents a teletransportation device as a means of free travel. The necessity of destroying the original is discussed, initially to avoid overpopulation, and then to prevent disputes at to who is who. The branch-line case, where the original is destroyed five minutes after the replication, also features. There, it is clear that the original is a different individual to the teletransportee, and clings to life. Destroying the original is (in retrospect) murder – but what’s the difference between this situation and the one where the original is immediately destroyed? There’s obviously the anticipatory angle – in the “normal” case, the original thinks of the situation as one of travel, and no-one thinks that identity is not preserved in the process, whereas in the branch-line case the confusion is exposed, and the original knows that the teletransportee is a clone. So, maybe the branch-line case is clearly a case of murder, whereas the “normal” case is a case of accidental homicide where the perpetrator is unaware that he’s killed someone?

The twist in the tail is that the heroine, overcome with guilt after the branch-line case (which she’d originally just thought of as a logical demonstration) – and now understanding the metaphysics of teletransportation – thinks she can now (a) atone for her crime, (b) escape the guilt and (c) escape her creditors by being herself teletransported. For (a) she dies and is cloned and (b) / (c) the teletransportee is a different individual to the orignal, so why should this individual have any moral connection to the other? There seems to be something fishy about this, but maybe it’s perfectly sound reasoning.

In the animation, the original and the teletransportee get muddled up (after all, both look alike and think alike), so for practical purposes we are in a situation similar to Locke’s “amnesiac drunkard” case – society has to find the drunkard guilty for his forgotten crimes (in that case because of the possibility of dissimulation); so, maybe the possibilty of dissimulation or devious intent (as in the animated case) would for practical purposes mean that the teletransportee would inherit the moral and legal baggage of the original – and surely they would, or the prctical consequences of people routinely escaping their debts would be grave.

Yet, metaphysically, it’s no different from escaping your debts by committing suicide, because the teletransportee is not the same individual. And, I think the Branch-line case shows that it’s not the same person either, unless we allow the non-substance term “Person” to have multiple instances – as immediately post teletransportation, both the original and the teletransportee would seem to be the same person (however this is defined non-substantially) even though they would rapidly diverge into two different persons. Just as in the case of suicide, society has in the past tried to show that you “can’t really escape” – because of the prospect of Hell, so in the teletransportation case the same myth would be propagated. The teletransportee would be deemed to inherit the moral baggage of the original and, if not up to speed on the metaphysics, would think rightly so. But the original would have escaped for all that!

Note last updated: 18/12/2010 19:58:05


Footnote 46: (Siliconisation)

Plug Note1

  • “Siliconisation” is a name – there may be others – for thought experiments such as, Unger’s “zippering”, the gradual replacement of neural tissue by silicon.
  • This is a subtle argument. We don’t – of course – know whether this TE is metaphysically possible. We don’t know whether silicon can sustain consciousness, though functionalists assume that it can. Gradually, it is said, we no longer have a human animal, but one that will – behaviourally at least – will be indistinguishable from one.
  • I think the situation is best viewed as an increasingly mutilated human animal with an ever-growing prosthesis. I doubt that the silicon would maintain phenomenal consciousness, but just be a “zombie” simulacrum.
  • Any replacement that would maintain phenomenal consciousness would be indistinguishable from natural part-replacement. But I think this is a contingent, empirical matter, a long way off from an answer.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read7, include8 the following:-
  • A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
  • This is mostly a place-holder. Currently, just see the categorised reading-list.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 7:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 8:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 11/03/2018 20:19:41


Footnote 47: (Brain State Transfer)

Plug Note1

  • The idea that we can, even in principle, copy the information from a brain to a backup device and then restore it to another (or the same) brain - as in "Williams (Bernard) - The Self and the Future" - without changing the identity of that brain seems fanciful to me.
  • This is partly because I am antipathetic to functionalism. The information stored in brains appears to be in highly distributed representations along connectionist lines rather than according to classical AI. The very physical structure4 of the brain changes along with what it represents. There is no simple software / hardware distinction in a realistic psychology of human beings.
  • Consequently, this is a case of an under-specified TE that Kathleen Wilkes so objects to. When we try to flesh out the details, we find that the TE doesn’t really work. Any backup will need to be molecule by molecule to retain the informational richness of the original, and consequently any restore will not really simply modify the existing brain, but will destroy it and replace it with a replica of the brain whose contents are supposedly being transferred. It will not simply feed information into a pre-existing brain.
  • Hence, I now think that Williams’s intuitions about the post-transfer A-body-person remaining a “mixed up” A-person are incorrect. Nor does A-body-person end up as B, but as a fusion of a confused replica of B’s brain and A’s body. The situation is best described as a transplant of (maybe only part of) a replica of B’s brain into A-body-person’s head.
  • This topic is related to other Notes, including:-
    Transhumanism, and
    Uploading.
  • Note that “uploading” differs from – and builds on – BSTs because it requires the person’s psychology and phenomenal consciousness to be realised (I would say merely simulated) on a digital computer, making a two-phase project, whereas BSTs – superficially at least – just require the copying phase.
  • Works on this topic that I’ve actually read13, include14 the following:-
    1. "Dainton (Barry) - Self: Philosophy In Transit: Prologue", Dainton
    2. "Ehring (Douglas) - Personal Identity and Time Travel", Ehring
    3. "Johnston (Mark) - Human Beings", Johnston
    4. "Williams (Bernard) - The Self and the Future", Williams
  • The categorised reading-list doesn’t provide much, though there must be many references in the literature. Many will mention BSTs only in passing. So, for now, the reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:-
    1. "Olson (Eric) - Personal Identity (Stanford, 2015)", Olson
    2. "Perry (John) - Williams on The Self and the Future", Perry
    3. "Shoemaker (Sydney) - Personal Identity: a Materialist Account", Shoemaker
  • This is mostly a place-holder.





In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1:
  • A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
  • I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
  • As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
  • The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 4:
  • Of course, even in a digital computer there are physical changes to the various gates and storage media.
  • But there is no growing or disassembling of connections.
Footnote 13:
  • Frequently I’ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note.
  • In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time.
  • In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course.
  • My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I’ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage.
Footnote 14:
  • I may have read others in between updates of this Note – in which case they will be marked as such in the “References and Reading List” below.
  • Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected.

Note last updated: 14/03/2018 14:38:24


Footnote 48: (Thesis - References)

I’ve not had time to reference all the allusions in my Research proposal. However, I've made a start, and I do have a large database of papers & books, categorised by sub-topic, which I’ve purchased, photocopied or downloaded; much of the tedious aspect of research is, I hope, over with. The database has been obtained thought reading lists on the Web, use of the Philosopher’s Index, and following up references in papers. I have read a large number, though a small percentage, of these items, usually filling the margins with annotations. I think a useful preliminary task prior to commencing formal study is to put these jottings into some sort of order.

Note last updated: 12/08/2007 10:17:46





References & Reading List

<
Author Title Medium Source Read?
Akiba (Ken) Identity Is Simple Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract American Philosophical Quarterly, Vol. 37, No. 4 (Oct., 2000), pp. 389-404 20%
Alexander (Denis) Science and Christian Belief 07.2 (October 1995) Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Low Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 10%
Anscombe (G.E.M.) The First Person Paper - Cited Rosenthal - The Nature of Mind No
Aristotelian Society Proceedings: 1995 Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Bibliographical details to be supplied No
Atkins (Kim) Personal Identity and the Importance of One's Own Body: A Response to Derek Parfit Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract International Journal of Philosophical Studies, Volume 8, Number 3, 1 October 2000, pp. 329-349(21). No
Ayer (A.J.) Body and Mind Paper - Cited Ayer - The Central Questions of Philosophy No
Ayer (A.J.) The Central Questions of Philosophy Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Bibliographical details to be supplied No
Ayers (Michael R.) Locke (Vol 2 - Ontology) Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Low Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 25%
Ayers (Michael R.) Neo-Lockean and Anti-Lockean Theories of Personal Identity in Analytic Philosophy Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Ayers - Locke (Vol. 2 - Ontology), 1991, Chapter 25, pp. 278-292 Yes
Baillie (James) Identity and Survival Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Baillie (James) - Problems in Personal Identity, 1993, Chapter 2 No
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Are Embryos Persons? Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract UMass Magazine, Spring 2006 Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Beyond the Cartesian Self Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Phenomenology and Mind, 1(5):48–57, 2011 11%
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Brief Reply to Rosenkrantz's Comments on my 'The Ontological Status of Persons' Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 65, September 2002, pp. 394-395 Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Can Subjectivity be Naturalized? Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Metodo: International Studies in Phenomenology and Philosophy, 1(2):15–25, 2013 11%
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Cartesianism and the First-Person Perspective Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Phenomenology and Mind, (7):20–30, 2014 No
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Christians Should Reject Mind-Body Dualism Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Peterson (Michael) & Van Arragon (Raymond) - Contemporary Debates in Philosophy of Religion, 2004 Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Everyday Concepts as a Guide to Reality Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract The Monist, Vol. 89, No. 3, Coming into Being and Passing Away (July 2006), pp. 313-333 6%
Baker (Lynne Rudder) First-Person Externalism Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Modern Schoolman, 84:155–70, 2007 10%
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Material Persons and the Doctrine of Resurrection Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Faith and Philosophy 18 (2001): 151-167 Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Materialism with a Human Face Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Corcoran - Soul, Body and Survival, Chapter 10 No
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Naturalism and the First-Person Perspective Book - Cited Low Quality Abstract Baker (Lynne Rudder) - Naturalism and the First-Person Perspective 28%
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Naturalism and the First-Person Perspective: What Is The Problem? Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Baker (Lynne Rudder) - Naturalism and the First-Person Perspective, Introduction Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) On Being One’s Own Person Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Reasons of One’s Own, Maureen Sie, Bert van Den Brink, Marc Slors, eds. (Hampshire, England: Ashgate Publishing Limitied, 2004): 129-149 8%
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Persons and Bodies: A Constitution View Book - Cited High Quality Abstract Baker (Lynne Rudder) - Persons and Bodies: A Constitution View Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Persons and the Natural Order Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Van Inwagen (Peter) & Zimmerman (Dean) - Persons: Human and Divine 17%
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Precis of 'Persons & Bodies: A Constitution View' Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract
(Write-Up Complete)
Field Guide to the Philosophy of Mind, 2001, e-Symposium on "Persons & Bodies: A Constitution View" Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Replies to Zimmerman, Rea & Pereboom Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract
(Abstract Started)
Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 64.3 (May 2002), pp. 623-635 No
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Reply to Olson Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Field Guide to the Philosophy of Mind, 2001, e-Symposium on "Persons & Bodies: A Constitution View" Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Review of 'A Materialist Metaphysics of the Human Person' by Hud Hudson Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Mind, 112 (2003): 148-151 No
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Review of 'Bodies and Souls, or Spirited Bodies?' by Nancey Murphy Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2006.08.03 (August 2006) Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) Review of 'What Are We? A Study in Personal Ontology' by Eric T. Olson Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Mind, 117:1120-1122, 2008 Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) The Coherence Of the Constitution View of Human Persons Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Baker (Lynne) - Persons and Bodies, Chapter 8 Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) The Difference that Self-Consciousness Makes Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Petrus - On Human Persons, 2003 Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) The First-Person Perspective Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Baker (Lynne) - Persons and Bodies, Chapter 3 Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) The First-Person Perspective and its Relation to Cognitive Science Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Matthew Haug, editor, Philosophical Methods, pages 318–334. Routledge, London, 2014 No
Baker (Lynne Rudder) The Ontological Status of Persons Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 65, September 2002, pp. 370-388 Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) When Do Persons Begin and End? Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract
(Abstract Written)
Distinguished Faculty Lecture, December 5, 2005 Yes
Baker (Lynne Rudder) When Does a Person Begin? Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Paul, Miller & Paul - Personal Identity, 2005 7%
Baker (Lynne Rudder), Etc. E-Symposium on 'Persons & Bodies: A Constitution View' Book - Cited Low Quality Abstract Baker (Lynne Rudder), Etc. - E-Symposium on 'Persons & Bodies: A Constitution View' Yes
Barash (David P.) Animal magnetism Paper - Cited Aeon, 13 May, 2014 Yes
Barnett (David) The Problem of Material Origins Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Noûs, Vol. 39, No. 3 (Sep., 2005), pp. 529-540 No
Baxter (Donald L.M.) Identity in the Loose and Popular Sense Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Mind, 97.3 (Oct. 1988), 575-582 No
Baxter (Donald L.M.) Many-One Identity Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Philosophical Papers 17, 1988, 193-216 No
Bekoff (Marc) The Emotional Lives of Animals: A Leading Scientist Explores Animal Joy, Sorrow, and Empathy and Why They Matter Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Bekoff (Marc) - The Emotional Lives of Animals: A Leading Scientist Explores Animal Joy, Sorrow, and Empathy and Why They Matter Yes
Benatar (David) Better Never to Have Been: The Harm Of Coming Into Existence Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Benatar (David) - Better Never to Have Been: The Harm Of Coming Into Existence 1%
Benatar (David) Kids? Just say no Paper - Cited Aeon, 19 October, 2017 Yes
Benfield (David) & Erwin (Edward) Identity, Schmidentity: It's Not All the Same Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Philosophical Studies, Vol. 27, No. 2 (Feb., 1975), pp. 145-148 No
Bennett (Jonathan) Locke on Diachronic Identity-Judgements Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Learning from Six Philosophers, Volume 2, Chapter 39 No
Benson (Ophelia) This Isn't My Body Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract From "Think" Website / The Philosopher's Magazine, 2005. Yes
Bermudez (Jose Luis) Thinking Without Words Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Bermudez (Jose Luis) - Thinking Without Words 6%
Bermudez (Jose Luis), Marcel (Anthony) & Eilan (Naomi), Eds. The Body and the Self Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Bermudez (Jose Luis), Marcel (Anthony) & Eilan (Naomi), Eds. - The Body and the Self 6%
Berry (R.J.) & Noble (T.A.) Darwin, Creation and the Fall Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Berry (R.J.) & Noble (T.A.) - Darwin, Creation and the Fall 12%
Bird (Alexander) & Tobin (Emma) Natural Kinds Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Stanford Encyclopaedia of Philosophy, 2008-17 75%
Blackburn (Simon) Has Kant Refuted Parfit? Paper - Referencing Medium Quality Abstract
(Write-Up Complete)
Dancy - Reading Parfit, 1997, Chapter 9 67%
Blatti (Stephan) A New Argument for Animalism Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Analysis Vol 72, Number 4, October 2012, pp. 685–690 No
Blatti (Stephan) Animalism (Continuum) Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract The Continuum Encyclopedia of British Philosophy, ed. A. C. Grayling, A. Pyle, N. Goulder (Continuum, 2006), vol. 1: 108–09 Yes
Blatti (Stephan) Animalism and its Implications Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Mostly Author's Text)
OU Website (now deleted) Yes
Blatti (Stephan) Animalism and Personal Identity Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Encyclopedia of Human-Animal Relationships, ed. M. Bekoff (Greenwood Press, 2007), 430-33 Yes
Blatti (Stephan) Animalism Unburdened Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
OU Website (now deleted) Yes
Blatti (Stephan) Animalism, Dicephalus, and Borderline Cases Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Philosophical Psychology 20 (2007): 595–608 Yes
Blatti (Stephan) & Snowdon (Paul), Eds Animalism: New Essays on Persons, Animals, and Identity Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Blatti (Stephan) & Snowdon (Paul), Eds - Animalism: New Essays on Persons, Animals, and Identity 21%
Blatti (Stephan), Ed. The Lives of Human Animals Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Abstract Written)
The Southern Journal of Philosophy Volume 52, Spindel Supplement, 2014 Yes
Block (Ned), Flanagan (Owen) & Guzeldere (Guven) The Nature of Consciousness Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Medium Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 48%
Bostock (David) Kripke on Identity and Necessity Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Philosophical Quarterly, Vol. 27, No. 109, Oct., 1977, pp. 313-324 No
Bourgeois (Warren) Contemporary Philosophers' Views on Persons: Nozick's Self-Makers Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Bourgeois - Persons: What Philosophers Say about You, 2003, Chapter 12 14%
Bourgeois (Warren) Modern Philosophers' Views on Persons: The Renaissance and the Early Moderns Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Bourgeois - Persons: What Philosophers Say about You, 2003, Chapter 5 Yes
Bourgeois (Warren) Persons: What Philosophers Say about You Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Medium Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 22%
Brennan (Andrew) Concepts of a Person Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Brennan - Conditions of Identity, 1988, Chapter 10 No
Brennan (Andrew) Conditions of Identity Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Brennan (Andrew) - Conditions of Identity 1%
Brennan (Andrew) Conditions of Identity: Introduction Paper - Cited Brennan - Conditions of Identity, Introduction Yes
Brennan (Andrew) Identity and Continuity Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Brennan - Conditions of Identity, 1988, Chapter 1 No
Brink (David) Rational Egoism and the Separateness of Persons Paper - Cited Dancy - Reading Parfit, 1997, Chapter 6 No
Brody (Baruch) Identity and Essence Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Brody (Baruch) - Identity and Essence No
Brueckner (Anthony) Branching in the psychological approach to personal identity Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Analysis 65, October 2005, pp. 294-301(8) No
Burke (Michael) Cohabitation, Stuff and Intermittent Existence Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Mind, 89, No. 355, Jul., 1980, pp. 391-405 No
Burke (Michael) Persons and Bodies: How to Avoid the New Dualism Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract American Philosophical Quarterly, 34 (4), 1997: 457-467 No
Burke (Michael) Spatial Analogues of 'Annihilation and Re-creation' Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Analysis 45, 1985, 24-29 No
Butchvarov (Panayot) Identity Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Midwest Studies in Philosophy 1977; 2: 70-89 No
Bynum (Caroline) Metamorphosis and Identity Book - Cited Low Quality Abstract Bynum (Caroline) - Metamorphosis and Identity 0%
Campbell (Joseph Keim), O'Rourke (Michael) & Silverstein (Harry S.) Time and Identity Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Low Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 10%
Campbell (Scott) Animals, Babies, and Subjects Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Southern Journal of Philosophy, Summer 2001; 39(2): 157-167 No
Campbell (Scott) Can You Survive a Brain-Zap Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Abstract Written)
Theoria, 2004; 70(1): 22-27 Yes
Campbell (Scott) Is Causation Necessary for What Matters in Survival? Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Philosophical Studies 126, Number 3, December 2005, pp. 375-396(22). No
Cargile (James) Review of Hintikka - Cogito, Ergo Sum: Inference or Performance? Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Journal of Symbolic Logic, Vol. 33, No. 4 (Dec., 1968), pp. 615-616 Yes
Carruthers (Peter) Fragmentary consciousness and the Cartesian theatre Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Carruthers - Phenomenal Consciousness No
Carruthers (Peter) Invertebrate concepts confront the Generality Constraint (and win) Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract R. Lurz (ed.), The Philosophy of Animal Minds. CUP, 2009 8%
Carruthers (Peter) Phenomenal Consciousness Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Medium Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied No
Carter (William) Artifacts of Theseus: Fact and Fission Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Write-Up Complete)
Australasian Journal of Philosophy, 61.3 (September 1983) Yes
Carter (William) Death and Bodily Transfiguration Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Mind, 1984, 412-418 Yes
Carter (William) Do Zygotes Become People? Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Mind, 91.361 (Jan. 1982), pp. 77-95 Yes
Carter (William) How to Change Your Mind Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Canadian Journal of Philosophy, Vol. 19, No. 1, March 1989, pp. 1-14 Yes
Carter (William) Our Bodies, Our Selves Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Australasian Journal of Philosophy, 66 No. 3,1988, 308-319 Yes
Carter (William) Will I Be a Dead Person? Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Copy Annotated)
Philosophy and Phenomenological Research Mar99, Vol. 59 Issue 1, p167, 5p; Yes
Cavalieri (Paola) & Singer (Peter), Eds. The Great Ape Project - Equality Beyond Humanity Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Cavalieri (Paola) & Singer (Peter), Eds. - The Great Ape Project - Equality Beyond Humanity Yes
Cerullo (Michael A.) Uploading and Branching Identity Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Minds & Machines (2015) 25:17–36 78%
Chalmers (David) How Cartesian Dualism Might Have Been True Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Website Yes
Chandler (Hugh S.) Theseus' Clothes-Pin Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Analysis, Vol. 44, No. 2 (Mar., 1984), pp. 55-58 Yes
Chappell (Tim), Chappell (Sophie Grace) In Defence of Speciesism Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Oderberg & Laing - Human lives : critical essays on consequentialist bioethics, 1997 Yes
Chappell (Tim), Chappell (Sophie Grace) The Relevance of Metaphysics to Bioethics: A Reply to Earl Conee Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Mind, Vol. 109, No. 434, Apr., 2000, pp. 275-279 No
Chisholm (Roderick) Self-Profile (G. Bodies & H. Persons) Paper - Cited Bogdan, "Roderick M. Chisholm", Chapter 1 "Self-Profile" by R. Chisholm, Sections G & H No
Claxton (Guy) Intelligence in the Flesh - Limbering Up: An Introduction Paper - Referencing High Quality Abstract
(Mostly Author's Text)
Claxton (Guy) - Intelligence in the Flesh: Chapter 1 Yes
Claxton (Guy) Intelligence in the Flesh: Why Your Mind Needs Your Body Much More Than it Thinks Book - Referencing (via Paper Referencing) Medium Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 28%
Coburn (Robert) Personal Identity Revisited Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Canadian Journal of Philosophy, 15.3, Sept. 1985, pp. 379-404 No
Cockburn (David), Ed. Human Beings Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Low Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 11%
Conee (Earl) Metaphysics and the morality of abortion Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Mind, Volume 108, Number 432, October 1999 , pp. 619-646(28) No
Conee (Earl) Reply to Timothy Chappell Paper - Cited Mind, Volume 109, Number 434, 1 April 2000 , pp. 281-283(3) No
Conway Morris (Simon) Darwin’s Compass: How Evolution Discovers the Song of Creation Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract St. Mary Le Bow Website; Robert Boyle Lecture 2005 Yes
Conway Morris (Simon) Life's Solution: Inevitable Humans in a Lonely Universe Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Conway Morris (Simon) - Life's Solution: Inevitable Humans in a Lonely Universe 5%
Conway Morris (Simon) Life's Solution: Inevitable Humans in a Lonely Universe (Preface) Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Morris (Simon Conway) - Life's Solution: Inevitable Humans in a Lonely Universe, Preface Yes
Corcoran (Kevin) Biology or Psychology? Human Persons and Personal Identity Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Petrus - On Human Persons, 2003 Yes
Corcoran (Kevin) Persons, Bodies and the Constitution Relation Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Southern Journal of Philosophy 37:1, 1999, pp. 1-20 No
Corcoran (Kevin) Rethinking Human Nature: A Christian Materialist Alternative to the Soul Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Corcoran (Kevin) - Rethinking Human Nature: A Christian Materialist Alternative to the Soul 13%
Corcoran (Kevin) Rethinking Human Nature: Introduction - What Kind of Things Are We? Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Corcoran (Kevin) - Rethinking Human Nature, Introduction Yes
Corcoran (Kevin), Ed. Soul, Body and Survival: Essays on the Metaphysics of Human Persons Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Medium Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 18%
Crane (Tim) & Farkas (Katalin) Identity: Introduction Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Crane and Farkas - Metaphysics - a guide and anthology, 2004, pp. 527-536 Yes
Dainton (Barry) Review of Eric Olson's 'The Human Animal: Personal Identity Without Psychology' Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Mind 107/427 (July 1998), pp. 679-682 Yes
Dainton (Barry) Self: Philosophy In Transit Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Low Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 10%
Dainton (Barry) Self: Philosophy In Transit: Prologue Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract
(Write-Up Complete)
Dainton (Barry) - Self: Philosophy In Transit, Prologue Yes
Dancy (Jonathan), Ed. Reading Parfit Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Medium Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 23%
Dancy (Jonathan), Ed. Reading Parfit Book - Referencing (via Paper Referencing) Medium Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 23%
Davidson (Donald) Rational Animals Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Davidson - Subjective, Intersubjective, Objective, Chapter 7 No
Davidson (Donald) Subjective, Intersubjective, Objective Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Low Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 3%
Davis (Lawrence H.) Smart on Conditions of Identity Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Analysis, Vol. 33, No. 3 (Jan., 1973), pp. 109-110 No
Dawkins (Marian Stamp) Through our Eyes Only? The Search for Animal Consciousness Book - Cited Dawkins (Marian Stamp) - Through our Eyes Only? The Search for Animal Consciousness No
De Waal (Frans) Our Inner Ape: The Best and Worst of Human Nature Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract De Waal (Frans) - Our Inner Ape: The Best and Worst of Human Nature 2%
De Waal (Frans) Primates and Philosophers: How Morality Evolved Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract De Waal (Frans) - Primates and Philosophers: How Morality Evolved 1%
De Waal (Frans) The Ape and the Sushi Master: Cultural Reflections of a Primatologist Book - Cited High Quality Abstract De Waal (Frans) - The Ape and the Sushi Master: Cultural Reflections of a Primatologist 21%
De Waal (Frans) The Whole Animal: Childhood Talismans and Excessive Fear of Anthropomorphism Paper - Cited De Waal (Frans) - The Ape and the Sushi Master: Cultural Reflections of a Primatologist, 2001, Chapter 1 Yes
DeGrazia (David) Great Apes, Dolphins, and the Concept of Personhood Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Southern Journal of Philosophy Fall 97; 35(3): 301-320 Yes
DeGrazia (David) Human Identity and Bioethics Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract DeGrazia (David) - Human Identity and Bioethics 10%
Delgado (Mikel Maria) Tidy birds and neat bees: on conscientiousness in animals Paper - Cited Aeon, 03 January, 2018 Yes
Dennett (Daniel) Brainstorms - Philosophical Essays on Mind and Psychology Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Low Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 43%
Dennett (Daniel) Brainstorms - Philosophical Essays on Mind and Psychology Book - Referencing (via Paper Referencing) Low Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 43%
Dennett (Daniel) Conditions of Personhood Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Dennett - Brainstorms - Philosophical Essays on Mind and Psychology, Chapter 14 Yes
Dennett (Daniel) The Cartesian Theatre and 'Filling In' the Stream of Consciousness Paper - Cited Block, Flanagan & Guzeldere - The Nature of Consciousness Yes
Dennett (Daniel) Where Am I? Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract
(Write-Up Complete)
Dennett - Brainstorms - Philosophical Essays on Mind and Psychology, Chapter 17 Yes
Dennett (Daniel) Where Am I? Paper - Referencing High Quality Abstract
(Write-Up Complete)
Dennett - Brainstorms - Philosophical Essays on Mind and Psychology, Chapter 17 Yes
Desmond (Adrian) The Ape's Reflexion Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Desmond (Adrian) - The Ape's Reflexion 4%
Diamond (Jared) The Rise and Fall of the Third Chimpanzee: How Our Animal Heritage Affects the Way We Live Book - Cited Diamond (Jared) - The Rise and Fall of the Third Chimpanzee: How Our Animal Heritage Affects the Way We Live No
Dummett (Michael) Frege, Philosophy of Language Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Medium Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied No
Dummett (Michael) Identity Paper - Cited Dummett - Frege, Philosophy of Language, Chapter 16 No
Dupre (John) The Disorder of Things: Metaphysical Foundations of the Disunity of Science Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Dupre (John) - The Disorder of Things: Metaphysical Foundations of the Disunity of Science No
Eccles (John) Evolution of the Brain, Creation of the Self Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Eccles (John) - Evolution of the Brain, Creation of the Self 3%
Edwards (Paul), Ed. Immortality Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Medium Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 6%
Edwards (Stassa) From Aesop to doge Paper - Cited Aeon, 29 January, 2015 Yes
Ehring (Douglas) Personal Identity and Time Travel Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
(Abstract Written)
Philosophical Studies, Vol. 52, No. 3 (Nov., 1987), pp. 427-433 Yes
Eilan (Naomi) The First Person Perspective Paper - Cited Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 1995 No
Eilan (Naomi), Marcel (Anthony) & Bermudez (Jose Luis) Self-Consciousness and the Body: An Interdisciplinary Approach Paper - Cited Bermudez, Marcel & Eilan - The Body and the Self No
Elliot (Robert) Personal Identity And The Causal Continuity Requirement Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Philosophical Quarterly, 1991, Vol. 41 Issue 162, p55, 21p; No
Ellis (Brian) Australasian Journal of Philosophy - 61.3 (September 1983) Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Bibliographical details to be supplied 83%
Ereshefsky (Marc) Bridging the Gap between Human Kinds and Biological Kinds Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Philosophy of Science 71 Dec2004, Issue 5, p912-921, 10p No
Erlandson (Douglas) Body Transfer and Disembodiment Paper - Cited Philosophical Studies 1980, 37: 13-19 No
Fetzer (James) The Evolution of Intelligence: Are Humans the Only Animals with Minds? Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Fetzer (James) - The Evolution of Intelligence: Are Humans the Only Animals with Minds? 3%
Fetzer (James) The evolution of intelligence: TOC & Preface Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Fetzer - The evolution of intelligence : are humans the only animals with minds? 2005 Yes
Fine (Kit) A Counter-Example To Locke's Thesis Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract
(Write-Up Complete)
Monist, Jul2000, Vol. 83 Issue 3, p357, 5p Yes
Flew (Anthony) Merely Mortal? Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Low Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 3%
Flew (Anthony) The Cartesian Assumption Paper - Cited Edwards - Immortality, pp, 220-224 No
Flew (Anthony) The Cartesian Turn Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Flew - Merely Mortal? 2000, Chapter 6 No
Fodor (Jerry) The Modularity of Mind: An Essay on Faculty Psychology Book - Cited Low Quality Abstract Fodor (Jerry) - The Modularity of Mind: An Essay on Faculty Psychology Yes
Foster (John) A Brief Defense of the Cartesian View Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Corcoran - Soul, Body and Survival, Chapter 1 No
Francescotti (Robert) Fetuses, corpses and the psychological approach to personal identity Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Philosophical Explorations, Mar2005, Vol. 8 Issue 1, p69-81, 13p Yes
Frankfurt (Harry) Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract
(Write-Up Complete)
Rosenthal - The Nature of Mind Yes
Frankfurt (Harry) Identification and Externality Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract
(Abstract Started)
Rorty (Amelie) - The Identities of Persons, 1976 Yes
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Noonan (Harold) Animalism Versus Lockeanism: A Current Controversy Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Philosophical Quarterly, 1998, Vol. 48 Issue 192, p302, 17p; Yes
Noonan (Harold) Animalism versus Lockeanism: Reply to Mackie Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Philosophical Quarterly, 2001, Vol. 51 Issue 202, p83, 8p Yes
Noonan (Harold) Arguments Against Animalism: Comments on L.R.Baker 'Persons & Bodies' Paper - Cited Field Guide to the Philosophy of Mind, 2001, e-Symposium on "Persons & Bodies: A Constitution View" Yes
Noonan (Harold) Identity and Determinacy Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Noonan - Personal Identity, 2003, Chapter 6 Yes
Noonan (Harold) Locke Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Noonan - Personal Identity, 2003, Chapter 2 Yes
Noonan (Harold) Persons, Animals and Human Beings Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Noonan - Personal Identity, 2003, Chapter 11 Yes
Noonan (Harold) Persons, Animals and Human Beings (2010) Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Campbell, O'Rourke & Silverstein - Time and Identity, III - The Self, Chapter 9 10%
Noonan (Harold) Reply to Garrett Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Analysis 46, 1986, pp. 205-211 No
Noonan (Harold) The Closest Continuer Theory of Identity Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Inquiry 28, pp. 195-229, 1985 No
Noonan (Harold) The Necessity of Origin Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Mind, Vol. 92, No. 365 (Jan., 1983), pp. 1-20 No
Noonan (Harold) The Only X and Y Principle Paper - Cited Analysis 45, 1985, 79-83 No
Noonan (Harold) The Possibility of Reincarnation Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Religious Studies, Vol. 26, No. 4 (Dec., 1990), pp. 483-491 17%
Noonan (Harold) The Reduplication Problem Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Noonan - Personal Identity, 2003, Chapter 7 Yes
Noonan (Harold) The Thinking Animal Problem and Personal Pronoun Revisionism Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Analysis, Vol. 70, No. 1 (January 2010), pp. 93-98 No
Noonan (Harold) Wiggins, Artifact Identity and 'Best Candidate' Theories Paper - Cited Analysis 45, 1985, 4-8 No
Nozick (Robert) Personal Identity Through Time Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Nozick - Philosophical Explanations - Metaphysics; The Identity of the Self; Chapter 1.I No
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Odegard (Douglas) Personal and Bodily Identity Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Philosophical Quarterly, 1969, 69-71 Yes
Oderberg (David) Continuity as the Criterion of Identity Over Time: Continuity Without Stages? Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Oderberg - The Metaphysics of Identity Over Time, 1993, Chapter 2 No
Oderberg (David) Continuity as the Criterion of Identity Over Time: The Classical Theory of Continuity Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Oderberg - The Metaphysics of Identity Over Time, 1993, Chapter 1 Yes
Oderberg (David) Fission, Intermittence and the Primitiveness of Identity Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Oderberg - The Metaphysics of Identity Over Time, 1993, Chapter 7 No
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Oderberg (David) The Myth of Continuity: A Coherent Ontology? Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Oderberg - The Metaphysics of Identity Over Time, 1993, Chapter 5 No
O'Hear (Anthony), Ed. Philosophy - 73/284 (April 1998) Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Bibliographical details to be supplied No
O'Hear (Anthony), Ed. Philosophy - 79/309 (July 2004) Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Bibliographical details to be supplied 24%
Olson (Eric) An Argument for Animalism Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Martin & Barresi - Personal Identity, Chapter 12 Yes
Olson (Eric) Animalism and the Corpse Problem Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Australasian Journal of Philosophy, 82, No. 2, pp. 265-274; June 2004 Yes
Olson (Eric) Animalism and the Remnant-Person Problem Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract
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J. Fonseca and J. Gonçalves, eds., Philosophical Perspectives on the Self, Peter Lang 2015: 21-40 Yes
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J. Fonseca and J. Gonçalves, eds., Philosophical Perspectives on the Self, Peter Lang 2015: 21-40 Yes
Olson (Eric) Human People Or Human Animals Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Philosophical Studies 80:159-181, 1995 Yes
Olson (Eric) Immanent Causation and Life After Death Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract
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Gasser (Georg) - Personal Identity and Resurrection: How Do We Survive Our Death? 2010 Yes
Olson (Eric) Immanent Causation and Life After Death Paper - Referencing High Quality Abstract
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Gasser (Georg) - Personal Identity and Resurrection: How Do We Survive Our Death? 2010 Yes
Olson (Eric) Is Psychology Relevant To Personal Identity? Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract Australasian Journal of Philosophy, 72, Number 2, June 1994, pp. 173-186(14). Yes
Olson (Eric) Lowe's Defence of Constitutionalism Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Philosophical Quarterly, Volume 53, Number 210, January 2003, pp. 92-95(4) No
Olson (Eric) Material Coincidence and the Indiscernibility Problem Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Philosophical Quarterly 51, No. 204, July 2001 Yes
Olson (Eric) Papers on Identity Boxes: Vol 13 (Olson) Book - Cited (via Paper Cited) Low Quality Abstract Bibliographical details to be supplied 24%
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Olson (Eric) Persistence Paper - Cited High Quality Abstract
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The Human Animal, September 1999, Chapter 2, pp. 22-41 Yes
Olson (Eric) Personal Identity Paper - Cited Low Quality Abstract Stich & Warfield - Blackwell Guide to the Philosophy of Mind, 2003 Yes
Olson (Eric) Personal Identity - Oxford Bibliographies Online Paper - Referencing Oxford Bibliographies Online / Sheffield University website Yes
Olson (Eric) Personal Identity (Stanford, 2002) Paper - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Stanford Encyclopaedia of Philosophy, 2002 Yes
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