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Consciousness, Phenomenal Consciousness, and Free Will

Sytsma, Justin and Snater, Melissa (2021) Consciousness, Phenomenal Consciousness, and Free Will. [Preprint]

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Abstract

One body of research in experimental philosophy indicates that non-philosophers by and large do not employ the concept of phenomenal consciousness. Another body of research, however, suggests that people treat phenomenal consciousness as essential for having free will. In this chapter, we explore the tension between these findings. We suggest that the dominant, ordinary usages of ‘consciousness’ concern notions of being awake, aware, and exercising control, all of which bear a clear connection to free will. Based on this, we argue that findings purporting to show that people take the capacity for phenomenal consciousness to be necessary for free will are better interpreted in terms of a non-phenomenal understanding of consciousness. We explore this suggestion by calling on extant work on the dimensions of mind perception, and we expand on it, presenting the results of a new study employing a global sample.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Sytsma, Justin
Snater, Melissa
Additional Information: Forthcoming in Advances in Experimental Philosophy of Action edited by Paul Henne and Samual Murray.
Keywords: Consciousness, Phenomenal Consciousness, Free Will, Mind Perception, Folk Psychology, Experimental Philosophy
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science
Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science > Consciousness
Depositing User: Justin Sytsma
Date Deposited: 15 Sep 2021 00:39
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2021 00:39
Item ID: 19556
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science
Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science > Consciousness
Date: 14 September 2021
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/19556

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