Academic journal article The Review of Metaphysics

American Philosophical Quarterly: Vol. 52, No. 4, October 2015

Academic journal article The Review of Metaphysics

American Philosophical Quarterly: Vol. 52, No. 4, October 2015

Article excerpt

Core Identifications: The Motives That, Really "Speak for Us," SOMOGY VARGA

Some of our motives (desires, projects, and so on) that we act on are not only of unconstrained origin, but we also take them to express who we are and, thus, to "speak for us." Harry G. Frankfurt has maintained that it is the formation of a hierarchical structure by means of an act of wholehearted identification that makes a given motive genuinely one's own. This article argues that wholehearted identifications fail to live up to this task. Instead, the article demonstrates that only a subtype of wholehearted identifications, namely core identifications, genuinely "speak for us." In addition, it argues that core identifications help explain the peculiar phenomenology that characterizes some of our crucial choices.

Phenomenal Contrast: A Critique, OLE KOKSVIK

A fundamental obstacle to understanding conscious experience is the lack of authoritative methods for determining what the character of a given experience is. Recently, an optimistic consensus has begun to arise, according to which phenomenal contrast arguments can provide answers. This paper argues that important facts about human mental lives systematically block a large class of uses of phenomenal contrast from achieving their aim, and that these minimal pair arguments therefore fail, quite generally.

Contagious Blindspots: Formal Ignorance Spreads to Peers, ROY SORENSEN

A blindspot is a consistent but inaccessible proposition. For instance, I cannot know "The test is on Friday but I do not know it." No contradiction follows from the supposition that you know my blindspot. But could you know my blindspot if we are epistemic peers? Epistemic peers have the same evidence and reasoning ability. So either both peers know a proposition, or both are ignorant. Since I cannot know my blindspot, neither can my peer. Thus the formal ignorance associated with blindspots spreads to my peers. This contagion is used to improve a solution to the blindspot solution to the surprise test paradox.

A Bump on the Road to Presentism, SAM BARON

Presentism faces a familiar objection from truthmaker theory. How can propositions about the past be made true if past entities do not exist? In answering this question, there are, broadly, two roads open to the presentist. …

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