Eliminative Materialism, Eliminativism - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

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"Eliminative materialism" espouses the view that our commonsense way of understanding the mind is false, and that, as a result, beliefs, desires, consciousness, and other mental events used in explaining our everyday behavior do not exist. Hence, the language of our "folk" psychology should be expunged, or eliminated, from future scientific discourse.

Two routes have been taken to get to the eliminativist's position. The first and less popular stems from a linguistic analysis of mentalistic language. Paul Feyerabend argues that the commonsense terms for mental states tacitly assume some version of dualism. Insofar as materialism is true, these terms cannot refer to anything in the physical world. Thus they should not be used in discussing ourselves or our psychologies since we are purely physical beings.

The second and better-developed approach comes out of the philosophies of science developed by Feyerabend, David Lewis, Willard Van...

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This section contains 1,114 words
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Buy the Eliminative Materialism, Eliminativism Encyclopedia Article
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Eliminative Materialism, Eliminativism from Macmillan. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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