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The Mind-Body Problem and Quine's Repudiation Theory

Nathan Stemmer
Behavior and Philosophy
Vol. 29 (2001), pp. 187-202
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/27759427
Page Count: 16
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
The Mind-Body Problem and Quine's Repudiation Theory
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Abstract

Most scholars who presently deal with the Mind-Body problem consider themselves monist materialists. Nevertheless, many of them also assume that there exist (in some sense of existence) mental entities. But since these two positions do not harmonize quite well, the literature is full of discussions about how to reconcile the positions. In this paper, I will defend a materialist theory that avoids all these problems by completely rejecting the existence of mental entities. This is Quine's repudiation theory. According to the theory, there are no mental entities, and the behavioral or physiological phenomena that have been attributed to mental entities, or that point to the existence of these entities, are exclusively caused by physiological factors. To be sure, several objections have been raised to materialist theories that do not assign some role to mental entities. But we will see that Quine is able to give convincing replies to these objections.

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