The Human Animal Personal Identity without Psychology

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 1999-09-02
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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Most philosophers writing about personal identity in recent years claim that what it takes for us to persist through time is a matter of psychology. In this groundbreaking new book, Eric Olson argues that such approaches face daunting problems, and he defends in their place a radicallynon-psychological account of personal identity. He defines human beings as biological organisms, and claims that no psychological relation is either sufficient or necessary for an organism to persist. Rejecting several famous thought experiments dealing with personal identity, he instead argues thatone could survive the destruction of all of one's psychological contents and capabilities as long as the human organism remains alive.

Author Biography

Eric Olson is a Lecturer in philosophy at Cambridge University.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Introductionp. 3
Psychology and Personal Identityp. 7
Persistencep. 22
Why We Need Not Accept the Psychological Approachp. 42
Was I Ever a Fetus?p. 73
Are People Animals?p. 94
The Biological Approachp. 124
Alternativesp. 154
Notesp. 169
Referencesp. 179
Indexp. 187
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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