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Two Cheers for Reductionism: Or, the Dim Prospects for Non-Reductive Materialism

Andrew Melnyk
Philosophy of Science
Vol. 62, No. 3 (Sep., 1995), pp. 370-388
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/188493
Page Count: 19
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Two Cheers for Reductionism: Or, the Dim Prospects for Non-Reductive Materialism
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Abstract

I argue that a certain version of physicalism, which is viewed by both its admirers and its detractors as non-reductionist, in fact entails two claims which, though not reductionist in the currently most popular sense of 'reductionist', conform to the spirit of reductionism sufficiently closely to compromise its claim to be a comprehensively non-reductionist version of physicalism. Putatively non-reductionist versions of physicalism in general, I suggest, are likely to be non-reductionist only in some senses, but not in others, and hence to disappoint those who wish to be physicalists but still to remain soft and cuddly non-reductionists.

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