Evolution and Epiphenomenalism
Author: Robinson, William
Source: Journal of Consciousness Studies, Volume 14, Number 11, 2007 , pp. 27-42(16)
Publisher: Imprint Academic
Abstract:This paper addresses the question whether evolutionary principles are compatible with epiphenomenalism, and argues for an affirmative answer. A general summary of epiphenomenalism is provided, along with certain specifications relevant to the issues of this paper. The central argument against compatibility is stated and rebutted. A specially powerful version of the argument, due to William James (1890), is stated. The apparent power of this argument is explained as resulting from a problem about our understanding of pleasure and an equivocation on 'explanation'. Finally, an argument by Plantinga (2004), which applies to beliefs rather than phenomenal qualities, is stated and rebutted.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: Department of Philosophy & Religious Studies, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA., Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Publication date: 2007