Ep. 219: The Harder Problem of Consciousness (Block & Papineau)

Jul 01, 12:52 PM

On Ned Block's "The Harder Problem of Consciousness" (2002) and David Papineau's "Could There Be a Science of Consciousness?" (2003).

What would give us sufficient reason to believe that a non-human was conscious? Block thinks this is a harder problem that we might suspect. We can't know for sure exactly what consciousness in us is, so we can't know for sure what such a being might require (a brain? certain patterns of behavior?) for them to be enough like us that we could safely apply our own experience of our own conscious states to them. Papineau diagnoses this as a fundamental vagueness in the concepts we use to describe our conscious states.

This conversation continues from ep. 218, with guest Gregory Miller from the Panpsycast still with us. 

End song: "Mindreader" by Phil Judd as interviewed on Nakedly Examined Music #98.

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