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Real Materialismand Other Essays$
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Galen Strawson

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199267422

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199267422.001.0001

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Real Materialism

Real Materialism

(p.19) 1 Real Materialism
Real Materialism

Galen Strawson (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the following statements: materialists hold that every real, concrete phenomenon in the universe is a wholly physical phenomenon and consciousness (‘what-it's-likeness’, etc.) is the most certainly existing real, concrete phenomenon there is. It follows that all serious materialists must grant that consciousness is a wholly physical phenomenon. This leads on to this question: how can consciousness possibly be physical, given what we know about the physical? To ask this question is already to have gone wrong. We have no good reason (as Priestley, Eddington, Russell, and others observe) to think that we know anything about the physical that gives us any reason to find any problem in the idea that consciousness is wholly physical.

Keywords:   physicalism, consciousness, experience, mind-body problem, matter, monism, Russell, Priestley, Eddington

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