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philosophy of mind


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philosophy of mind (countable and uncountable, plural philosophies of mind)

  1. (philosophy, uncountable) The area of philosophy which studies the nature and functions of the mind, thought, and consciousness, with attention to such topics as perception, reasoning, belief, memory, will, and identity.
    • 1982, Richard Rorty, "Contemporary Philosophy of Mind," Synthese, vol. 53, no. 2 (November), p. 325:
      Philosophy of mind, paradoxically enough, became an interesting area of philosophy only when philosophers began to stop taking the notion of "mind" for granted and began asking whether it was a misleading locution.
    • 2006, Jonathan Stoltz, "Sakya Pandita and the Status of Concepts," Philosophy East and West, vol. 56, no. 4 (October), p. 567:
      [T]he crux of the debate over concepts is really to be found within discussions of the philosophy of mind.
  2. (philosophy, countable) The views of a particular philosopher or philosophical movement concerning the matters studied within this area of philosophy.
    • 1932, Ledger Wood, "Descartes' Philosophy of Mind," The Philosophical Review, vol. 41, no. 5 (September), p. 466:
      Descartes is a thinker whose very reputation and influence have been serious obstacles to the correct understanding and interpretation of his doctrines . . . . This is preëminently true of his ‘philosophy of mind’, understanding by this expression his conception of the human mind, its nature and significance.
    • 1991, Mario Bunge, "A Philosophical Perspective on the Mind-Body Problem," Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, vol. 135, no. 4 (December), p. 518:
      Now we shall argue that science is relevant to philosophy and, in particular, to the problem of settling the disputes among the ten philosophies of mind outlined in the previous section.