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CONCEIVABILITY ARGUMENTS AND THE OVERGENERATION PROBLEM

From: 2018-10-23 To:2018-10-23

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  • Thematic Line


    Modern & Contemporary Philosophy
  • Research Group


    Mind, Language & Action
  • MLAG RESEARCH SEMINAR 2018-2019

    CONCEIVABILITY ARGUMENTS AND THE OVERGENERATION PROBLEM

    Savvas Ioannou (PhD Student, University of St. Andrews)

     

    23 de outubro 2018 (terça-feira)

    15h30 | Sala de Reuniões 2

    Entrada livre

     

    Resumo: Chalmers (1996, 2011) argued that ideal primary positive conceivability entails possibility. He claimed that phenomenal zombies are conceivable this way and thus, they are possible. Therefore, physicalism about phenomenal properties is wrong. However, I will argue that this conceivability argument faces the overgeneration problem. That is, the kind of reasoning suggested by this conceivability argument can be used to claim that a variety of properties are non-physical. Consider waterish concepts like ‘water*’. The primary intension of ‘water*’ picks out the dominant thing in our environment that satisfies our thirst. This concept is only used to talk about this causal power. Water* may emerge from H2O, and H2O may be correlated with water* only contingently. I can conceive of a world, in which there is H2O but it does not satisfy our thirst when we drink it because there is no water*. Therefore, water* seems to be something non-physical. If the aforementioned case about water* is ideally conceivable and can be generalised to other higher-level concepts, then the proponent of the conceivability argument faces a dilemma. Either s/he continues using it and endorses an abundant property dualism or rejects it because of its absurd conclusions.

     

    Imagem: Mark ROTHKO, Multiform (1948). National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

     

    Programa MLAG Research Seminars: http://ifilosofia.up.pt/activities/mlag-research-seminar-2018-2019 

     

    Organização:
    Research Group Mind Language and Action Group (MLAG)
    MLAG Seminars 2018-2019 (Sofia Miguens, Diana Couto, José Pedro Correia, João Silva)

    Instituto de Filosofia da Universidade do Porto - FIL/00502
    Financiamento: FCT

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