Philosophy Dictionary of Arguments

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Supervenience, philosophy of mind: supervenience is an expression for a restricted dependency between areas. Elements of a region B are dependent on changes of elements of an area A, but not vice versa. Supervenience is used by some authors to explain the relationship between mental and physical processes. The assumption of a supervenience serves to circumvent more powerful assumptions like, e.g. the identity theory. See also covariance, dependency, identity theory, materialism, reductionism.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Item Summary Meta data
I 68
Consciousness/Supervenience/McGinnVsSearle: conscious states do not allow an emergence theoretical explanation using mereological terms. We are unable, to trace back pain to underlying neural entities.
I 68
In contrast to that, it is quite possible to explain the higher level properties of liquids in this way. ((s) Because all levels are easily available to us.)
I 69
States of consciousness are therefore not to be explored according to CAlM (combinatorial atomism with lawlike mappings). We can probably grasp higher order brain functions of their constituents, but if we start from the consciousness, this explanation fails.
Therefore, we do not have a model for a possible emergence relation. We do not see an obvious consequence relation. (> Supervenience/McGinn).
I 98
I/McGinn: is subject to a kind of physically induced consequence relation: are two bodies physically identical, and if one of them is a person, the other one must be a person, too.
Because in terms of person-likeness there can be no difference, which would not be based on a physical difference.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

McGinn I
Colin McGinn
Problems in Philosophy. The Limits of Inquiry, Cambridge/MA 1993
German Edition:
Die Grenzen vernünftigen Fragens Stuttgart 1996

McGinn II
C. McGinn
The Mysteriouy Flame. Conscious Minds in a Material World, New York 1999
German Edition:
Wie kommt der Geist in die Materie? München 2001

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> Counter arguments in relation to Supervenience

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2020-09-28
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