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  2. Personal Identity and Self-Consciousness
  3. regular | Department of Philosophy
  4. Brian Garrett

The events would be unified in a purely passive respect, simply as the experiences contained within the life of that subject of experiences. But for that subject to be a person , a genuine moral agent, those experiences must be actively unified, must be gathered together into the life of one narrative ego by virtue of a story the subject tells that weaves them together, giving them a kind of coherence and intelligibility they wouldn't otherwise have had.

This is how the various experiences and events come to have any real meaning at all — rather than being merely isolated events — by being part of a larger story that relates them to one another within the context of one life Schechtman , 96— This view purports to account for our practical concerns in a far more adequate way than the previous accounts of numerical identity.

So it makes sense for me to rationally anticipate some future experiences only if they will be mine, where what makes them mine is that they will fit coherently and accurately into my own ongoing self-told story. What explains my special sort of concern for myself is that I'm in fact an extended narrative ego — not some present time-slice concerned about the well-being of some different future time-slice — and I'm constantly extending that narrative into the future, so my concern is global , a concern for the whole self I'm creating via this story, the whole self whose various parts are mine.

And as for responsibility, the Narrative Criterion implies that what makes some past action mine for which I'm eligible for praise or blame is that it flowed from my central values, beliefs, and experiences, that there's a coherent story I may tell uniting it to the other elements of my life.

And a similar story may be told to account for compensation Schechtman , — There are, nevertheless, problems with the account. For one thing, it is not entirely clear why a self-told narrative is necessary to unite the various experiences and events of one's life into a coherent whole. I may have robust psychological unity without having told myself any kind of story. But even if we allow for hypothetical narratives to do this work, it remains unclear just what role a narrative actually plays in our practical concerns.

After all, some narratives get it wrong — it can't just be that whatever I say about the way the events of my life fit together is what goes — and if we correct for that, then it seems we must admit that it isn't the narrative itself that makes the various events and experiences united with one another; rather, they must be united with one another independently, and the correct narrative just serves as a kind of post hoc overlay, an aesthetic articulation of the pre-existing metaphysical unity.

But perhaps the most serious worry comes from the fact that, as it stands, narrative identity depends on numerical identity as DeGrazia , , admits. What matters to us with respect to all of our practical concerns is that we ourselves continue to exist: it's a necessary presupposition of my rational anticipation, self-concern, possibilities for compensation, and so on that I myself persist, but this is an issue of numerical identity.

Another way to put this point is that one can't be a person, on the narrative view, unless one gathers up the various experiences one has as a subject of experiences into a coherent narrative, but then the identity of that subject of experiences must be preserved across time for its experiences to be so gathered up. If narrative identity presupposes numerical identity, though, then we still need a plausible account of numerical identity first, one that can ground an answer to the characterization question the narrative view was built to address.

But given the problems of both the Psychological and Biological views, is there a way to do so? A very recent addition to the literature is promising. Some have attempted to respond to the worry about bad or false narratives by introducing a reality constraint to narrative views, one that's buttressed by appeal to third-person storytelling Lindemann ; Schechtman , Ch. But allowing third-person narratives into the mix causes a sea change in our enterprise, for it greatly broadens the range of identity-related practical concerns we will need to explain.

To see this important point, suppose that we start with a purely subjective, first-person narrative account of my identity, according to which I gather together various experiences in my life as mine so that I can tell a sensible story unifying the actions for which I'm morally responsible, the experiences I can rationally anticipate having, the burdening experiences for which I can justifiably be compensated with benefits, and the expected future benefits or burdens I may prudentially care about.

Notice that telling this unifying story both requires a robust set of psychological capacities and incorporates just those actions and experiences I have had or will have while in possession of that robust set of psychological capacities, i. Now I may tell a one-sided or downright false story. To correct the story, therefore, we may have to check it against third-person narratives of my life. But third-person narratives are not going to be restricted just to what happened to me while I was a Lockean person.

These are social treatments that also seem grounded by attributions of identity, such as he was my son , or she's still my mom. But neither the Psychological Criterion nor the Biological Criterion can account for them in a straightforward way. The Psychological Criterion requires sophisticated psychological capacities, sufficient to sustain continuities of memory, intentions, beliefs, desires, and character. Now one might think the Biological Criterion could easily handle such cases, but it can't.

That's again because it's not in virtue of her being the same human animal that we continue to treat someone in a PVS or in the end stages of dementia, say, as identical to her pre-PVS self. Rather, it's in virtue of her being the same human animal that we do so. This is the core of what we may call the Anthropological View , recently advanced and defended by Marya Schechtman Schechtman It is preferable, therefore, to stick with the anthropological label for the sake of clarity and distinction from the other views on the table.

On the Anthropological View, we are human beings, with ways of life organized around a particular paradigm: We are creatures who typically develop in certain ways and are treated in certain ways not only with respect to our inborn biological and psychological features but also with respect to our socially shaped capacities e. But we are also born into families and societies whose members treat us in various ways, giving us names, dressing us, singing to us, taking walks with us, and so on.

These concerns all track the very same metaphysical unit that gradually becomes responsible and concerned for its own future. We thus cannot say that the later responsible unit is a different thing, or even a different kind of thing, from the infant from which he or she developed. Insofar as this is an account that draws from paradigmatic cases of humanity to identify our identity conditions, it can allow that, while there are non-paradigmatic cases of humans that may not be a target of all our practical concerns, they are nevertheless individuals like us and so are certainly appropriate targets of some such concerns like being named, dressed, and sung to.

This explains why humans with profound intellectual disabilities and those in a PVS or with Alzheimer's dementia are still individuals like us, units whose identity is also defined by the web of our practical concerns Schechtman , Chs. Individuals like us, then, are human animals with a particular form of life, one whose practices of pregnancy, birth, development, social interaction, personhood, and death both shape and are shaped by the particular attributes and capacities of the individuals living it.

If successful, this Anthropological View would reveal an extremely tight relation between our practical concerns and personal identity. Before we assess it, however, we must first examine its polar opposite, a view abjuring any such relation between practical concerns and personal identity. Parfit's is, in many respects, a Lockean account of personal identity, although there are significant departures. While Parfit's arguments against nonreductionism and in favor of reductionism are striking and important, for our purposes what matters is how he articulates and develops reductionism and how he argues for the surprising conclusion that the identity relation is in fact not what matters in survival.

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To begin, he suggests at times that the most plausible reductionist criterion of personal identity is the Psychological Criterion. As we saw earlier, this criterion maintains that in order for X to be identical to Y , X must be uniquely psychologically continuous with Y. Psychological continuity is potentially a branching, one-many relation, i. But identity is an equivalence relation — it is reflexive, symmetrical, and transitive — so it holds only one-one. By way of explanation, consider the case Parfit uses in support of his claim that identity is not what matters: fission Ibid. Suppose both of my brain hemispheres are functional duplicates of the other, and that each of my other two triplet brothers has suffered irreversible brain damage.

A brilliant neurosurgeon can transplant one of my brain hemispheres into each brother, and so each survivor we will stipulate will be fully psychologically continuous with me upon waking up. What has happened to me? But then given the transitivity of identity both survivors would also have to be identical to each other , which seems obviously false although see Belzer for doubts about this assertion.

So to avoid violating this transitivity requirement, we simply have to stipulate in our criterion of personal identity that, if the relations in which identity consists may hold one-many, they must obtain uniquely for identity itself to obtain. But then what has happened to me in fission? It seems I cannot survive as both, as they are two people and I am only one.

In addition, there simply is no non-arbitrary reason why identity should obtain between me and just one of the survivors, given that I bear precisely the same relation to each one. So the only remaining option is that I do not survive fission see Parfit , 42; see also Brink b, —; and Johansson But is this like an ordinary case in which I don't survive, i. Indeed, it will be just as if I had survived. Everything that matters in ordinary survival or nearly everything , therefore, is preserved in fission, despite the fact that the identity relation is not. As long as that relation holds between me-now and some other person-stage — regardless of whether or not it holds one-one — what happens to me is just as good as ordinary survival.

While there are plausible alternative reactions to fission that maintain the importance of the identity relation see, e. What, after all, do we do if identity is not what matters in survival? Given that we have for the most part been assuming that identity is the relation grounding our patterns of concern, we are now faced with two options: either we take those patterns of concern to be unjustified or we find new grounds for them.

In Reasons and Persons , Parfit is officially agnostic on the proper approach he claims that arguments for both stances are defensible, yet also can be defensibly denied; see Parfit , — Nevertheless, it surely seems most plausible to retain the patterns of concern formerly grounded on identity and simply find a new justification for them. And it seems obvious that Relation R could provide such a justification. After all, if we formerly thought identity justified these patterns insofar as it was what we thought mattered for survival, but it turns out that identity — Relation R plus uniqueness — is not what matters only because uniqueness is not what matters, then it seems natural and plausible to cite the remaining aspect of identity Relation R as what grounds our patterns of concern in virtue of being what truly matters in survival see, e.

How, in other words, could uniqueness have provided all the relevant justifications? Indeed, Parfit himself seems drawn to such a conclusion in the discussion of rationality and morality that follows. He calls it the Moderate Claim Parfit , This is in contrast to the Extreme Claim , which is that the further fact of identity is what grounds our practical concerns, so to the extent there is no such further fact, our practical concerns are ungrounded. So let us assume that Relation R grounds our patterns of concern.

Consider, then, prudential rationality. While it is ordinarily thought to be imprudent to discount the interests of one's Much Later Self MLS just because that self will not come into existence for a long time, Parfit suggests that reductionism provides a different, more plausible reason to do so.

Since one of the relations in R connectedness obtains by degrees, it is very likely it will obtain to a much reduced degree between me-now and my MLS than it will between me-now and my tomorrow's self. But if R grounds my patterns of concern, and a reduced degree of connectedness is one part of R, then a reduced degree of connectedness justifies a reduced degree of concern. Thus, I may be justified in caring much less about my MLS than about my tomorrow's self.

This conclusion justifies discounting my MLS's expected interests in favor of my present interests. Of course, given that we still think great imprudence is wrong, how might we criticize it if we made these revisions to our practices? One way to do so would be to recognize that, since my MLS would really be more like a different person than me, he should be treated as such, i.

Great imprudence like this, in other words, would be immoral Parfit , — The thought is that both his theory of identity and its implications for our prudential and moral practices and concerns require us to change our views both of ourselves and of what matters. But this judgment may be mistaken.

After all, Parfit seems to be trying to show that a what in fact matters to us in survival revealed by the fission case is Relation R, not identity, and b what these antecedent commitments about survival imply about prudence and morality is that the wrongness we currently attach to great imprudence should merely be called a wrongness of morality.

But in neither case is there any call for revision of anything substantive in our views of ourselves or in our normative practices. Indeed, people simply are less concerned with their MLSs than with their tomorrow-selves, and it is not difficult to see why: if they cannot imagine being the self in question, it is extremely difficult either to imagine what that self's interests are or to take those interests into account equally with their more closely related stages in practical deliberation. But what generally enables that act of projective imagination is the expectation of a significant degree of psychological connectedness, so the less there is expected to be of that relation, the less our concern for those distant stages is likely to be.

This suggests, then, that Parfit's view is less revisionary than revelatory : he may be taken to be providing a clear-headed description of our practices and commitments, and in so doing revealing to us just what those practices and commitments actually involve and entail for other aspects of our lives although see the discussion of the various articles by Mark Johnston later on for considerations to the contrary.

Fission is a challenge to any theory of personal identity that purports to preserve a tight relation between identity and our practical concerns. The Psychological Criterion will be a clear casualty, for instance. What, though, about the Anthropological View? Schechtman offers an interesting take on fission: Such a procedure hasn't yet occurred, so without filling in the social conditions and practices we can't state in advance what the identity of the survivors would be.

If fission happened all the time, all of those future humans would likely be very different sorts of creatures from us, as they would be living a different form of life, and so the identity conditions for individuals like us simply wouldn't apply to them. If it happened only once or very rarely, the survivors would be sufficiently like us as we could still engage with them interpersonally, and our interactions with them could still make sense from within our current form of life that they would be one of us, but they couldn't be identical to the original person.

This is because there would be such a huge range of differences in how they would be treated -- by the spouse, children, friends, bank, and employer of the pre-fission person -- that each person's relation to the pre-fission person would now just be too different to count as identity Schechtman , The Anthropological View thus seems as if it can deal with fission while nevertheless preserving a tight relation between identity and practical concerns.

It seems difficult to arbitrate between the IDM and the Anthropological View, and one reason is that they seem to be taking different methodological approaches to identifying the identity conditions for different kinds of entities. Schechtman, on the other hand, asks the third-person question, about how such fission products would be treated, which allows for their being creatures who are indeed different from us.

Furthermore, Schechtman is interested in identifying from the start the unified locus of our practical concerns and then subsequently figuring out that thing's identity conditions, whereas Parfit is interested in what antecedent theories of personal identity would imply for our practical concerns in light of fission.

This latter difference in methodology will be discussed in a later section. The former difference in the object of our practical concerns, however, may be irreconcilable. Indeed, from my perspective in fission, once I'm a Lockean person, it may seem that nothing internal to that perspective will be lost holding instead twice over. But I can also understand how differently the survivors might well be treated in a number of respects by others. It may thus be unclear which perspective we ought to privilege here. We have just examined the leading contemporary theories of personal identity or what matters in personal identity , and we have also explored how those views might relate to ethics.

But we have thus far ignored what may be the most popular theory of identity outside philosophy and a view that a minority of philosophers still accept as well. This is nonreductionism, according to which persons exist separately and independently from their brains and bodies, and so their lives are unified from birth to death in virtue of that separately existing entity, what we will call a Cartesian ego but is most popularly thought of as a soul. And although there is logical space available for a nonreductionism according to which identity isn't what matters for survival and our practical concerns, the universal view is instead the opposite.


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Notice, then, that this view implies both a deep unity within individual lives and a deep disunity between lives. After all, if what unifies my life is a particular persisting ego-substance, and that substance is wholly present at every stage of my life, then every temporal slice of my life is just as much a part of me as every other, so if prudential concern is grounded in identity, for example, I ought to be equally concerned for every part of my life.

Now one important problem for this view is that it is very difficult to see why my patterns of concern should track this particular ego, and not instead the psychological features constituting Relation R. What is it about this substance that warrants my special prudential concern, for example? But if we make that move, then we have already switched to reductionism, it seems, and because those direct psychological connections may hold one-many, identity cannot be what matters.

On the other hand, the nonreductionist might insist that I am justified in having special concern for my future ego simply insofar as it is the only thing that will be me , regardless of whether or not Relation R is preserved by or within it. But if identity is entirely prized apart from psychology in this way, and if the ego to be tracked is an immaterial substance as it is, of course, on the Cartesian version , we are left with two related puzzles.

First, if the particular ego I now have or am can be perceived or identified neither directly, via some empirical means, nor indirectly, via a particular set of psychological properties it might be thought to evince, then we actually have no reason to believe that there is just one such ego unifying the various stages of our lives. Instead, our bodies might get a new, qualitatively identical ego every year on our birthdays, or perhaps every day, or perhaps there is a river of them flowing through us from moment to moment.

If this were to happen, then I would cease to exist, replaced by a qualitatively identical person who then inherits my psychological properties. But no one would even notice! This would be rather odd, to say the least, and this is because of the connection we think should obtain between our metaphysical criterion of personal identity and our epistemological criterion of personal identity.

In other words, we tend to think there is a close connection between the nature of personal identity and what enables us to determine when identity obtains. So if what makes X and Y identical is sameness of body, it will also be our reidentification of that body which enables us to determine that X is Y. Similarly, if what makes X and Y identical is some kind of psychological continuity, then determining that X and Y are identical will be a matter of determining whether psychological continuity obtains between them.

Now in both the body and the psychology cases, we have the capacity to do the tracking in question. If the Featureless Cartesian View is correct, though, we do not. We cannot track immaterial egos floating free from any particular psychological properties, so on this view we would never be justified in claiming to have reidentified anyone, nor would we be justified in claiming special concern for some future stage of our bodies: in both cases, we could have no reason whatsoever for thinking that the persons in question were who we thought they were Perry , 6—18; Parfit , Now the defender of the view might maintain that, given the correctness of the metaphysical criterion, we should simply abandon our desire for epistemic access to identity.

And it is indeed the case that this version of nonreductionism could be true: There is simply no way to show that I am not, after all, an essentially immaterial substance unattached to any particular psychological properties. But if this true, and there becomes no way to make justified judgments of identity, then the second problem is that the theory is just irrelevant for all practical purposes. We in fact make judgments of identity and reidentification based on physical and psychological properties — we lack the capacity to do anything else — so even if the Featureless Cartesian View were true, it would be useless in addressing any of our practical concerns.

Let us turn briefly now to a very general position, a possible version of reductionism according to which identity nevertheless still matters. This view is typically defended by advocates of four-dimensionalism , according to which objects have both spatial and temporal parts see, e. This view allows one to say that, in the fission case, both post-fission people existed all along, completely coinciding spatially pre-fission so that each shared that temporal stretch of his life with the other.

In other words, they might be like two distinct roads that coincide for a while before separating off in different directions. Thus, if both post-fission person-stages are stages of the same person as the pre-fission stages but there are indeed two distinct persons all along , then one can maintain the thesis that the identity relation is what matters, for now identity is also preserved through fission whereas in Parfit's version while what matters is preserved through fission, identity is not.

Of course, this does not mean identity is really what matters. Perhaps instead the identity relation merely always accompanies , but is not constitutive of, what matters. Indeed, this point may be pressed on the four-dimensionalist. Why, after all, would it be identity that matters in my relation to some future person-stage?

Suppose we regularly lived to be years old. On the four-dimensionalist account, I now would be unified with — I would be part of the same spacetime worm as — my year-old self. But it is extraordinarily difficult, if not psychologically impossible, for me to project myself into his shoes, for I expect him to be radically different, psychologically, from me.

There would be between us, then, virtually nothing of what actually matters in ordinary survival, despite the obtaining of identity. Of course, one might maintain instead that it is some strong degree of psychological connectedness that provides the unity relation between various temporal stages, but then it seems explicit that the relation preserving what matters is just connectedness, not identity per se.

There is much more to say about this view, of course see, e. Strictly speaking, a metaphysical criterion of identity has no direct implications whatsoever for normative matters, simply because what is the case implies nothing about what ought to be the case. What people who seek a relation between identity and ethics typically do, then, is appeal to considerations of identity to fill in some key blank regarding what the ethically significant metaphysical units are. In other words, certain conclusions about identity are taken to inform us as to just what unifies the targets of prudential and moral theorizing.

Consider prudence, for example.

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Personal Identity and Self-Consciousness

Similarly, with respect to moral responsibility, we need to know whether the agent subject to praise or blame for some action is part of the same unit as the agent who performed that action. But notice that a specification of possible metaphysical unities alone will not be sufficient, for what we need in addition is a specification of which such unities are significant for ethics.

To see why this is an issue, consider just reductionism. Reductionism is actually quite a general metaphysical view, holding at its most basic that the facts about identity simply consist in more particular facts about brains, bodies, and so forth. But even if one accepts reductionism, and so abandons appeal to some further fact about separately existing entities to explain personal identity, and even if one also believes that identity is not what matters in survival, one still has much work to do before being able to apply the theory to ethics.

This is because there are at least four possible metaphysical units that could be targeted for normative theorizing. First, we might target living human beings , human organisms picked out by the Biological Criterion and to some extent the Anthropological View and unified over time via biological continuity. These entities would endure from some early-stage fetuses until organismic death.

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Second, we might target Lockean persons , entities picked out by the Psychological Criterion and unified over time by psychological continuity overlapping chains of strong psychological connectedness. These entities would endure from late infancy or the time at which the various psychological connections could be established to brain death or perhaps dementia. Third, we might target selves , entities unified by strong psychological connectedness.

Such units would have significant duration, but they would not be likely to endure for as long as persons — insofar as memories typically fade, beliefs and desires are lost or revised over time, and so forth — and they certainly wouldn't endure as long as the life of the human being of which they were a part. It could be, after all, that if the deep fact of identity is missing, there just are no other relations of significance we could legitimately substitute for it, so all that remains would be merely the basic atomic moments of people's lives.

For discussion of the last three possible units, see D. So it is not enough that we articulate the various possible metaphysical units. We must also figure out a way to identify which one we ought to target for ethics or whether just one will do the trick for all relevant forms of ethical theorizing.

So in its purely metaphysical guise, reductionism must settle merely for presenting these four alternatives, remaining officially neutral on which one the ethicists should adopt. This two-step process— identifying the possible metaphysical units, then narrowing down the list to the ethically significant metaphysical units — is often overlooked by those wishing to adopt metaphysical conclusions in their normative theorizing, but both steps are important a notable exception to those who overlook this point is Brink; see his , a, and b. Once we make the switch from talk of identity to talk of unity relations as being ethically significant, however, things can also get quite complicated.

For there seems no reason in principle why two of the contending intrapersonal unity relations — psychological continuity and connectedness — could not also hold interpersonally. That is, not only could psychological continuity, say, hold one-many, between me-now and more than one person in the future, but it could also hold between me-now and other spatially distinct, simultaneously-existing persons Brink a, —, b, — And the same could be true as well of psychological connectedness. At least some of the psychological relations making up connectedness and continuity can obviously obtain interpersonally, e.

But it also seems perfectly possible that memories and intentions may be shared between persons, produced by some common cause Ibid. Recognizing these connections widens the boundaries of what counts as a targeted unit and in so doing it may also blur the boundaries between prudence and morality , but the ensuing messiness may not be worth it. After all, if the proper ethical unit is a self, say, unified by psychological connectedness, which obtains by degrees, that means that my unity with many others — and with future stages of myself — will be only partial, obtaining to various people in varying degrees.

But if these are the units targeted by ethics, how do we mark their boundaries such that the moral concepts and principles coherently apply McMahan , 62? In addition, who exactly would the practical agents in question be, where people are more or less unified with each other Brink b, —? And there may also be worries about how to apply moral concepts admitting of no scalar dimensions — like promises — to moral units — like selves — that do Williams , — These questions and more pose genuine challenges for accounts allowing for interpersonal unities.

Perhaps in order to avoid these and other problems, Marya Schechtman proposes her Anthropological View as driven by the question of what units are the proper object of all of our person-related practical concerns. As already noted, she thinks the only way to unite all of them is by focusing on the human animal, one that lives our form of life.

Brian Garrett

This allows her to say that the fetus is the same thing as the infant, which is the same as the teenager, the adult, and the demented grandparent, one individual treated as the same locus of a host of practical concerns over the course of that life. This view effectively blocks the possibilities, raised above, of some concerns cutting across individual lives, but this may prevent the Anthropological View from being able to explain some features of commonsense morality that the interpersonal unities view can.

We have already seen some ways in which considerations of personal identity might be relevant to self-regarding arenas like anticipation and prudential concern. We turn now to examine specific ways in which personal identity may have implications for the other-regarding practical concerns discussed in various arenas of moral philosophy.

One of the most widely discussed in the literature thus far has been ethical theory. Most of those working in the field to this point have been appealing to considerations of identity to boost the plausibility of consequentialism, and, more specifically, utilitarianism. There are various ways in which such an attempt proceeds. First, one might identify a serious objection to utilitarianism, say, and then show how considerations of personal identity or at least of what matters in identity dissolve the objection.

This is the approach Parfit takes in Reasons and Persons. That is, in extending the principle of rational choice to society-wide decision-making via use of the imagined impartial spectator , utilitarianism treats the interests of all members of society as if they were the interests of one person, and so conflates different persons into one. What Parfit suggests is that, if the objection depends on a hard-and-fast metaphysical distinction between persons i. The success of arguments for this conclusion actually depends on the specific version of reductionism being advanced.

After all, there are several possible ethically significant metaphysical units compatible with reductionism, and it turns out that the larger the unit, the less successful the argument will be. As the authors on this topic do, we will focus just on the three possible psychological units: persons, selves, and atoms.

If one believes that the only relevant units are atoms momentary experiencers — given that in the absence of the further fact of identity one believes there just are no other unifying relations of any significance i. But notice that if one adopts either of the other two psychology-based versions of reductionism, according to which either selves or persons are the basic moral units, the argument may not be as successful.

If, for instance, it is psychological continuity that matters instead of the further fact of identity — and matters just as much as identity was thought to i. And the same goes for strong psychological connectedness, which would unify selves in a way rendering them metaphysically distinct from sets of lives. It looks, then, as if the only way to bolster support for utilitarianism with a version of this argument, anyway is to adopt the extreme view, that the ethically significant metaphysical units are momentarily-existing person-atoms.

But this is implausible, for it is very difficult even to make sense of a momentary agent. Agents, after all, have interests and projects they seek to advance that necessarily project them into the future. In order to be what one is at any moment, then, one must identify with one's future. Unless , that is, one allows that the relations that matter in identity can hold interpersonally, in which case a number of interesting possibilities arise. For instance, Brink argues that the possibility of interpersonal continuity supports a kind of consequentialism via rational egoism.


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  • If one is a rational egoist, one will aim to promote one's own good. Return to Book Page. Personal Identity and Self-Consciousness is about persons and personal identity. What are we? And why does personal identity matter? Brian Garrett, using jargon-free language, addresses questions in the metaphysics of personal identity, questions in value theory, and discusses questions about the first person singular. Brian Garrett makes an important contribution to the p Personal Identity and Self-Consciousness is about persons and personal identity.

    Brian Garrett makes an important contribution to the philosophy of personal identity and mind, and to epistemology. Get A Copy. Hardcover , pages. More Details Original Title. Other Editions 7. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. Olson - - In Stephen P. Warfield eds. Personal Identity and Extrinsicness.

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