Theo Todman's Web Page - Notes Pages


Write-ups

Olson - The Human Animal Abstracta Symposium

(Text as at 18/12/2010 19:58:05)

(For earlier versions of this Note, see the table at the end)


This Note reviews a Symposium, recorded in the Brazilian journal Abstracta, convened on the 10th anniversary of the publication of "Olson (Eric) - The Human Animal - Personal Identity Without Psychology". It consists of a full Special Issue of the Journal ("Olson (Eric), Etc. - Abstracta Special Issue on "The Human Animal""), which, after an Editorial, includes a brief Precis1 by Olson of his Book, followed by:-

  1. A response2 from Lynne Rudder Baker.
  2. A response3 from Ned Markosian.
  3. A response4 from Dean Zimmerman.
  4. A replies to his critics from Eric Olson: to Baker5, Markosian6 and Zimmerman7.
  5. A complaint8 from Lynne Rudder Baker.
I’m not 100% clear on how many of the above papers were presented at the Symposium itself. It looks from a footnote in Olson’s reply to Baker that Olson had had a draft of Baker’s paper on which to base his reply. So, I imagine that Olson’s précis and the above three responses were as delivered, but that Olson’s replies have been worked up subsequently to the Symposium to take account of variations from the drafts. The closing remark in Baker’s complaint makes it appear as though it was delivered in the Symposium as well. Since the symposium only lasted a day (14th April April 2007, in San Francisco), it wouldn’t have been possible for Baker to write the paper on the spot, though maybe she delivered her response ex tempore and then worked it up a bit later. Alternatively, Olson’s draft Replies could have been circulated beforehand.

The upshot of this Symposium is not much, really. Olson and Baker have still made no progress and talk past one another. Markosian’s critique is somewhat left field. Olson acknowledges that Zimmerman’s critique is the most penetrating. In my view, this is not a problem for Animalism per se, but with what Zimmerman calls Olson’s Master Argument, his “Thinking Animal” argument. As far as I can see, Animalism can survive in the absence of this dubious argument, though it looks from a brief squint at Olson’s latest book – "Olson (Eric) - What are We?" – that he’s not so sure. I presume this book was already in press by the time of the Symposium. In the Preface to that book he acknowledges his debt to Zimmerman, so I imagine Zimmerman’s critique for this Symposium was hardly news.

See the following Terminological Disclaimer9 related to what I have to say in the above links.



Printable Version:



Previous Version of this Note:

Date Length Title
08/04/2009 08:41:17 2446 Olson - The Human Animal Abstracta Symposium



Note last updated Reading List for this Topic Parent Topic
18/12/2010 19:58:05 None available None

Summary of Note Links from this Page

Baker - The Human Animal: Big-Tent Metaphysics Baker - The Human Animal: Response to Olson General Disclaimer Markosian - The Human Animal: Three Problems for Olson Olson - The Human Animal (Precis)
Olson - The Human Animal: Reply to Baker Olson - The Human Animal: Reply to Markosian Olson - The Human Animal: Reply to Zimmerman Zimmerman - The Human Animal: Objections  

To access information, click on one of the links in the table above.




Summary of Note Links to this Page

Animalism - Objections Theo Todman's Philosophy Research Papers      

To access information, click on one of the links in the table above.




Authors, Books & Papers Citing this Note

Author Title Medium Extra Links Read?
Olson (Eric), Etc. Abstracta Special Issue on "The Human Animal" Book High Quality Abstract   Yes
Todman (Theo) Thesis - Animalism - Objections Paper Medium Quality Abstract   Yes



References & Reading List

Author Title Medium Source Read?
Olson (Eric) The Human Animal - Personal Identity Without Psychology Book - Cited Low Quality Abstract Olson (Eric) - The Human Animal - Personal Identity Without Psychology Yes
Olson (Eric) What are We? Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Olson (Eric) - What are We? No



Text Colour Conventions

  1. Black: Printable Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2017
  2. Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2017




© Theo Todman, June 2007 - October 2017.Please address any comments on this page to theo@theotodman.com.File output:
Website Maintenance Dashboard
Return to Top of this PageReturn to Theo Todman's Philosophy PageReturn to Theo Todman's Home Page