Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-99c86f546-kpmwg Total loading time: 0.355 Render date: 2021-12-07T14:20:20.727Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

Chapter 5 - Waiting for the self

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 December 2011

JeeLoo Liu
Affiliation:
California State University, Fullerton
John Perry
Affiliation:
Stanford University, California
Get access

Summary

Hume’s thesis

In one of his most famous passages, Hume writes:

[W]hen I enter most intimately into what I call myself, I always stumble on some particular perception or other, of heat or cold, light or shade, love or hatred, pain or pleasure. I never can catch myself at any time without a perception, and never can observe any thing but the perception. (Hume 1739, 252)

This remark admits of various interpretations: metaphysical and phenomenal, strong and weak. Here I want to defend a strong phenomenal version of Hume’s view. I want to argue that there is no phenomenal quality corresponding to the subject of experience – no phenomenal I.

This topic has been much discussed by philosophers, and, like Hume, most tend to rely on intuitions, introspective reports, and contestable transcendental arguments. My review will begin with Descartes, but I will be more interested in assessing lines of research that treat the phenomenal I as a topic for empirical inquiry. There have been a number of recent attempts to identify a subject of experience using the techniques of contemporary brain science. I will consider some of the more promising proposals and argue that they come up short in important ways.

Type
Chapter
Information
Consciousness and the Self
New Essays
, pp. 123 - 149
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2011

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)
1
Cited by

Send book to Kindle

To send this book to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

  • Waiting for the self
  • Edited by JeeLoo Liu, California State University, Fullerton, John Perry, Stanford University, California
  • Book: Consciousness and the Self
  • Online publication: 05 December 2011
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511732355.006
Available formats
×

Send book to Dropbox

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

  • Waiting for the self
  • Edited by JeeLoo Liu, California State University, Fullerton, John Perry, Stanford University, California
  • Book: Consciousness and the Self
  • Online publication: 05 December 2011
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511732355.006
Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

  • Waiting for the self
  • Edited by JeeLoo Liu, California State University, Fullerton, John Perry, Stanford University, California
  • Book: Consciousness and the Self
  • Online publication: 05 December 2011
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511732355.006
Available formats
×