Philosophy of Mind
Full course description
The mind-body problem is a legacy from the scientific revolution which started in the 16th century and reached its culmination point with Newtonian physics. Starting with Galileo’s and Descartes’ formulation of this problem we will discuss different philosophical positions in a more in-depth fashion. In the behavioral- and neurosciences these problems transform into questions about consciousness, conscious experience, and conscious perception. Those topics disappeared from science with the rise of behaviorism in the early twentieth century. But now they are back in the behavioral- and neurosciences again. Only over the past few decades consciousness has reappeared in cognitive science and neuropsychology. We will start this course with some philosophy, then we will scrutinize modern day sciences, especially cognitive science and neuroscience for ideas on mind and consciousness. At the end of the course we will go back to philosophy and we will ask ourselves whether all this empirical knowledge from psychology and neuroscience has brought us further in unraveling the brain-consciousness- (or mind-body) problem.
- To acquaint students with current ideas, philosophical arguments and empirical evidence on the nature of mind and the relationship between mind and body. We focus on modern cognitive and neuropsychological theories in the area of consciousness. Philosophical reflection on the caveats and problems associated with the notion of consciousness will be stimulated.
SSC1005 Introduction to Psychology or HUM1007 Introduction to Philosophy and at least one 2000-level course from Humanities, Social Sciences or Sciences.
- Kim, Jaegwon: Philosophy of Mind, 2011
- Dehaene, Stanislas: Consciousness and the Brain, New York, 2014
- Massimini, Marcello & Tononi, Giulio: Sizing Up Consciousness, Oxford, 2018
- Introduction Course Manual
- R.P. de Vries