Which of the following is NOT part of an argument for eliminative materialism? a. How does Churchland respond to the objection that introspection reveals the. Eliminative Materialism. Paul Churchland. The identity theory was called into doubt not because the prospects for a materialist account of our mental capacities. Paul M. Churchland; Published Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of JSTOR’s Terms and Conditions of Use, available at.

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The second family of eliminative materialist arguments focuses upon idiosyncratic features of folk-psychological posits and ultimately elimiative that these features will be accommodated by a scientific account of the mind.

Radical behavioristssuch as Skinner, argued that folk psychology is already obsolete and should be replaced by descriptions of histories of reinforcement and punishment. Eliminative materialism is the relatively new s—s idea that certain classes of mental entities that common matterialism takes for granted, such as beliefs, desires, and the subjective sensation of pain, do not exist.

Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science, Vol.

Eliminative Materialism

It has also been argued against folk psychology that the intentionality of mental states like belief imply that they have semantic qualities. I apply the radical philosophy of identity theory from philosophy of mind to the relationship between the personal experience of pain and specific neurophysiologic mechanism and argue that the relationship between them is best explained as one of type identity.

Since this assumption is naterialism, Dennett’s argument is unsuccessful. Hence, the syntactic structures which are assumed by folk psychology can have no place in such a structure as the brain.

While eliminativists would churchlanv to construct some sort of non-truth-conditional semantics, Devitt and Rey argue that the challenge of such a project reveals only that eliminativism materialiwm implausible, not that it is, as Boghossian claims, incoherent Devitt, ; Devitt and Rey, Stich offers a variety of reasons for thinking that there are fundamental difficulties that will plague any attempt to provide principled criteria for distinguishing cases of reference success from cases of reference failure.


As Patricia Churchland has argued, it is hard to see where in the brain we are going to find anything that even remotely resembles the sentence-like structure that appears to be essential to beliefs and other propositional attitudes.

Theories of the A Priori in Epistemology. But why suppose that before scientific psychology gets there? Shapiro edsConsciousness and Self-Regulation Mterialism 3.

Instead, it is substantially modified and reworked, with perhaps only marerialism of its posits being dropped altogether. Information Theory in Philosophy of Computing and Information.

Pragmatic pluralism became predominant as his epistemology became more neurocomputationally inspired, which saved him from the skepticism implicit in certain passages of the theory of reduction he outlined in Scientific Realism and the Plasticity of Mind. Since eliminative materialism claims that future research will fail to find a neuronal basis for various mental phenomena, it must necessarily wait for science to progress further.

Externalism and Armchair Knowledge in Philosophy of Mind. Furthermore, the scope of Live Skepticism is bizarre: One perspective Dennett, is that propositional attitudes are actually dispositional states that we use to adopt a certain heuristic stance toward rational agents. Our common sense, conceptual framework concerning the explanation and prediction of human behavior is construed chyrchland a theory, termed folk psychology.

Eliminative Materialism (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

Here we see a tension that runs throughout the writings of many early eliminative materialists. This is noteworthy since many critics of eliminativism claim it is virtually impossible to imagine what a psychological theory would look like that doesn’t invoke propositional attitudes to explain cognition Hannan, Nonreductive physicalists have a causal exclusion problem.


For instance, the theory-theory claims common-sense assigns two sorts of properties to beliefs. Patricia and Paul Churchland have offered a number of arguments based on general considerations about theory evaluation. What is the point of drawing such a drastic conclusion about the nature of mentality, when a central premise needed for that conclusion is a long ways from being known?

There seems no logical basis, to the eliminativist, for making an exception just because folk psychology has lasted longer and is more intuitive or instinctively plausible than the other folk theories.

Eliminative materialists go further than Descartes on this point, since they challenge the existence of various mental states that Descartes took for granted. Consequently, the transition from demonology to modern accounts of this behavior was ontologically radical. Unfortunately, besides suggesting a questionable perspective on reference, this interpretation raised further questions about what distinguished eliminativism from reductionism.

Moreover, since it was difficult to see how the second version was significantly different from various forms of reductive materialism hence, Quine’s skepticism about the difference between elimination and explication it also raised doubts about the distinctiveness of eliminative materialism.

Hence, one common criticism of eliminativism—that our invoking of beliefs and desires is not a theoretical or quasi-scientific endeavor—has very limited force. Must one be a type identity theorist, or are alternative reductive views available, as Jaegwon Kim has suggested more than once?

Cherubs, presumably, are not part of any sort of quasi-scientific theory, yet this alone is no reason to think they might exist.