Date of Graduation

8-2012

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Philosophy

Advisor

Jack Lyons

Committee Member

Eric Funkhouser

Second Committee Member

Thomas Senor

Keywords

Philosophy, religion and theology; Identity theory; Multiple realization; Neural plasticity

Abstract

A classic argument in the philosophy of mind is that the identity theory is false because mental state types are multiply realized in brain state types. In this dissertation I provide a detailed elaboration of the argument and a defense of it against a few of its prominent contemporary critics. Finally I offer empirical evidence from inter-species differences in humans and monkeys, and also from a case of extensive neural plasticity, which shows that mental state types are multiply realized in brain state types.

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