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Volume 48 • Number 4

October 2011



Theoretical Identities as Explanantia and Explananda

by Kevin Morris

The mind–brain identity theory, the thesis that sensations are identical with properties or processes of the brain, was introduced into contemporary discussion by U.T. Place, Herbert Feigl, and J. J. C Smart in the 1950s. Despite its widespread rejection in the following decades, the identity theory has received several carefully articulated defenses in recent years. Aside from developing novel responses to well-known arguments against the identity theory, contemporary identity theorists have argued that the epistemological resources available to support the adoption of identities are more plentiful than has often been supposed; further, they have argued that mind-brain identities allow for the resolution of otherwise intractable explanatory puzzles about the phenomenal properties of experience.

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ISSN: 2152-1123