Workshop on intentionality and panpsychism – University of Copenhagen

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Workshop on intentionality and panpsychism

CFS workshop featuring Michelle Montague and Galen Strawson, Dept. of Philosophy, University of Texas at Austin, USA


13:15-14:30: Michelle Montague: "Against the Attitudes"
14:45-16:00: Galen Strawson: "Panpsychism: 'a revised materialism'"


Michelle Montaque: "Against the Attitudes"

Many mental states exhibit intentionality, the property of being about something, or of something in the sense of ‘of’ exemplified by phrases like ‘a view of Florence’, ‘an account of the Battle of the Bulge’. Paradigm cases of intentional mental states standardly include beliefs, desires, thoughts, hopes, fears, supposings, wonderings. It has long been standard practice in analytic philosophy to describe these intentional mental states in terms of three distinct metaphysical elements: a subject-element, an attitude-element, and a content-element. I call it ‘the Tripartite view’, because it posits three fundamental distinct elements. In this paper I argue that the Tripartite view is mistaken, and propose that it should be replaced by what I will call ‘the Dual view’. According to the Dual view, all there is to the metaphysics of our intentional states is (i) a content and (ii) a subject; there is no need to postulate distinct metaphysical relations and call them ‘the belief relation’, ‘the desire relation’, and so on.

Galen Strawson: Panpsychism: “a revised materialism”

We know that [1] consciousness exists—phenomenologically rich qualial consciousness. At the same time there are good reasons to believe that [2] materialism is true, or, more moderately, to think that [3] human consciousness is wholly a matter of neural activity. There is no conflict between [1] and [2]/[3]. There are also good reasons to hold that [4] panpsychism is true—to favour some form of panpsychism over all other positive substantive proposals about the fundamental nature of concrete reality. There is no conflict between [2]/[3] and [4], no conflict between panpsychism and full-on materialism. Panpsychists can be materialists, and materialists do best to be panpsychists.


The workshop is free and open to all, no registration is needed.
Everyone is welcome!