Mon, 09 Dec | De Havilland Campus, Woburn Room

Mind Readings IV

Sam Coleman – Telepathy, Higher-Order Thought, and Physicalism
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Time & Location

09 Dec 2019, 12:00
De Havilland Campus, Woburn Room, De Havilland Campus, Mosquito Way, Hatfield AL10 9BL, UK

About the Event

Talk abstract:

Physicalists make it a condition of a property being suitably 'objective' that it be publicly accessible in principle to different subjects. It's a striking fact that when it comes to the properties of consciousness, such as the colours and pains we experience, most physicalists believe each individual has a unique private perspective on their experiences no one else can have. Even more striking is that physicalists would consider the idea that I could experience the properties you are conscious of (and vice-versa) as positively supernatural - this would be telepathy in effect. I explain what telepathy is and argue that physicalists need it if they are to be consistent about the mind being physical in nature, like everything else. Luckily there is a psychological model available for them to make sense of telepathy in a scientifically respectable way - by appealing to a special variety of higher-order thought theory. I close by considering a possible real-life case of such telepathy, in the form of the craniopagus Hogan sisters, who share a good deal of their brain tissue and claim to have direct experience of one another's sensations.

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