Universität Wien FIND

180082 SE The First Person - Singular and Plural (2017S)

5.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 18 - Philosophie
Continuous assessment of course work

Self-knowledge, self-awareness, self-consciousness have always been core topics of philosophical research, and while some contemporary philosophers argue that there is not much of a difference, in principle, between the way we know ourselves and the way in which we know anything else, most have favored arguments for the view that there is something very special, important, and philosophically deep about it. Mind, it is argued, is “first-personal” by nature: it is what it is in virtue of the special way it is self-known. In this course, we examine a series of classical and contemporary arguments for the special status of self-knowledge and its constitutive role for mind. We then turn to the topic of what we might call the plural mind: experiences and attitudes that are not mine (and/or yours/his/hers), but ours, collectively. Examples are the case of a family’s grief at the death of their beloved dog, or our intentionally dancing a Tango together (if it is just me intentionally performing my movements and you intentionally performing yours, we’re unlikely to succeed, however complicated a structure of mutual belief and expectations we add). Do such experiences and attitudes challenge our view that each of us has his or her own mind? Can we understand plural attitudes without assuming that we self-know what we, together, feel and intend in the same way I self-know what I feel and intend? Would such plural self-knowledge commit to the apparently paradoxical view that you can self-know other people? Should we thus rather stick to the view that the first-personal nature of mind is limited to the singular?

Registration/Deregistration

Note: The time of your registration within the registration period has no effect on the allocation of places (no first come, first served).

Details

max. 30 participants
Language: English

Lecturers

Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

Tuesday 07.03. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 14.03. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 21.03. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 28.03. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 04.04. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 25.04. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 02.05. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 09.05. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 16.05. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 23.05. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 30.05. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 13.06. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 20.06. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock
Tuesday 27.06. 18:30 - 20:00 Hörsaal. 2H NIG 2.Stock

Information

Aims, contents and method of the course

Self-knowledge, self-awareness, self-consciousness have always been core topics of philosophical research, and while some contemporary philosophers argue that there is not much of a difference, in principle, between the way we know ourselves and the way in which we know anything else, most have favored arguments for the view that there is something very special, important, and philosophically deep about it. Mind, it is argued, is “first-personal” by nature: it is what it is in virtue of the special way it is self-known. In this course, we examine a series of classical and contemporary arguments for the special status of self-knowledge and its constitutive role for mind. We then turn to the topic of what we might call the plural mind: experiences and attitudes that are not mine (and/or yours/his/hers), but ours, collectively. Examples are the case of a family’s grief at the death of their beloved dog, or our intentionally dancing a Tango together (if it is just me intentionally performing my movements and you intentionally performing yours, we’re unlikely to succeed, however complicated a structure of mutual belief and expectations we add). Do such experiences and attitudes challenge our view that each of us has his or her own mind? Can we understand plural attitudes without assuming that we self-know what we, together, feel and intend in the same way I self-know what I feel and intend? Would such plural self-knowledge commit to the apparently paradoxical view that you can self-know other people? Should we thus rather stick to the view that the first-personal nature of mind is limited to the singular?

Content: Classical and contemporary sources on self-knowledge; contemporary sources on collective intentionality and plural experiences/attitudes

Method: Close reading, discussion

Assessment and permitted materials

Compulsory attendance, written discussion inputs: 40%
Moderation of one session, active participation: 20%
Short term paper (5-10 pages): 40%

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

Examination topics

Reading list

To be announced

Association in the course directory

MA Ethik M02 B, D
MA M1
MA M2
M3 D. Ethik/ Angewandte Ethik, Politische Philosophie, Sozialphilosophie;
MA M5

Last modified: Mo 07.09.2020 15:36