Materialist philosophers claim that everything real, is somehow material inasmuch as it belongs to the physical, ‘spacetime’ world of causes and effects, from microbes to volcanoes, from tables and chairs to paintings and love letters. In modern times (starting in the Enlightenment and reaching full velocity in the twentieth century, notably with the adopted Australian philosopher J.J.C. Smart) materialists have specifically been interested in the particular ‘region’ of minds and brains. That is, from a general metaphysical position on how we belong to the material universe, materialism focused on the particular case of how our minds would be material in the sense of being brains, i.e., how mental states are brain states. In what follows I will focus on this status of the brain as a problem or starting-point for materialists, while also maintaining a certain idea of ‘discontinuity’ regarding different attitudes towards the brain.

'The Brain Is a Book Which Reads Itself': Cultured Brains and Reductive Materialism from Diderot to J. J. C. Smart

Charles Wolfe
2014

Abstract

Materialist philosophers claim that everything real, is somehow material inasmuch as it belongs to the physical, ‘spacetime’ world of causes and effects, from microbes to volcanoes, from tables and chairs to paintings and love letters. In modern times (starting in the Enlightenment and reaching full velocity in the twentieth century, notably with the adopted Australian philosopher J.J.C. Smart) materialists have specifically been interested in the particular ‘region’ of minds and brains. That is, from a general metaphysical position on how we belong to the material universe, materialism focused on the particular case of how our minds would be material in the sense of being brains, i.e., how mental states are brain states. In what follows I will focus on this status of the brain as a problem or starting-point for materialists, while also maintaining a certain idea of ‘discontinuity’ regarding different attitudes towards the brain.
Mindful Aesthetics: Literature and the Science of Mind (London: Continuum, 2014),
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10278/3719471
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