Philosophy of the Human Person
Instructions: On the basis of the readings discussed in class write an essay answering the following questions. Use as many textual citations as possible to support your analysis.
(1) As Thomas Nagel points out in his paper (“What is it like to be a bat?”), “Consciousness is what makes the mind-body problem really intractable. […] Without consciousness the mind-body problem would be much less interesting. With consciousness it seems hopeless”. Reflect on the passages and describe Nagel’s position: Why is consciousness so important? Why, on Nagel’s view, “reductionism” as a philosophical approach does not really work?
(2) Provide then an analysis of Aristotle’s definition of soul. What does Aristotle mean by that concept? According to what criteria does Aristotle divide all living beings into categories? Is there any difference between Aristotle’s and Nagel’s conception of the “mind-body” problem?
(3) Provide an analysis of Aristotle’s account of the faculties, of his description of the way the five senses (especially the sense of “touch”) work and of what he means by “object of sense”.
The paper is worth 50 points:
– each question is worth 14 points
– structure and style of the paper are worth 8 points
Please… don’t forget to give your paper a TITLE
BE SURE TO CITE ANY SECONDARY RESOURCES THAT INFLUENCE YOUR ANSWER.
THE ESSAY MUST BE TYPED. LENGTH: 6-7 PAGES, DOUBLE SPACED, TIMES NEW ROMAN 12.
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