On the Physicalistic Approach to Consciousness

Khatami, Mahmoud (2005) On the Physicalistic Approach to Consciousness. Teorema: Revista internacional de filosofía, 24 (1). pp. 35-51. ISSN 0210-1602


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Physicalism is the basic approach of the contemporary analytic philosophy of mind to consciousness. The overall aim of this paper is to revise the crucial aspect ofphysicalistic approach to consciousness which is crystallized in the explanatory gap between the phenomenal and the causal characterization: nothing about the possible neural realization and causal role of consciousness is revealed in its phenomenal structure, and nothing about the phenomenal properties is indicated in the neural and causal underpinning. How then is it possible to give a physicalistic account of consciousness in its double aspect without simply denying the phenomenal, experiential and intentional component? This paper will address the latter question by indicating a series of difficulties a program of “physicalizing” consciousness has to confront when taking seriously what is shown by the best phenomenological analysis of consciousness and intentionality. There seems to be no clear way of bridging the gap in a physicalistic perspective when the phenomenal properties present themselves as untractable from this point of view, and when the causal closure of the physical world leaves no place for phenomenal and intentional characteristics.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Philosophie > Philosophische Journale, Kongresse, Vereinigungen > Teorema. Revista internacional de filosofia > Volume XXIV (2005)
Depositing User: Sissi Kemp
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2013 20:16
Last Modified: 10 Nov 2013 20:16
URI: http://sammelpunkt.philo.at/id/eprint/2349

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