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Title: Naturalismo e soggettività
Authors: Paternoster, Alfredo
Keywords: naturalismintentional statesself
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Source: Alfredo Paternoster, "Naturalismo e soggettività", in: Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics, XI (2009) 2, pp. 142-161.
Series/Report no.: Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics
XI (2009) 2
Metaphysical naturalism (in the philosophy of mind) is the thesis according to which mental
states can be reduced to, and thereby explained by, neurophysiological states. In this paper I
discuss whether this thesis is plausible taking into consideration different kinds of mental
states: propositional attitudes, on the one hand, and phenomenal states, on the other. I shall
argue that, while metaphysical naturalism is false for standard propositional attitudes (beliefs,
desires etc.), it can be defended in the case of low-level phenomenal states, or raw feelings.
As a consequence, since the instantiation of high-order mental states requires the neurophysiological
mechanisms that constitute raw feelings, the notion of self has a biological
basis, and in this sense, we can speak of a “natural self”.
The structure of the paper is the following. In the first paragraph I shall focus
on the naturalization of paradigmatic intentional states (beliefs and desires). In
the second paragraph I move to the discussion of raw feelings and show the consequences
of my view for the notion of self.
Type: Article
ISSN: 1825-5167
Appears in Collections:Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics (2009) XI /2

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