Class Notes (1,100,000)
CA (650,000)
UTM (30,000)
PHL (500)
PHL105Y5 (100)
Lecture

Parfit Notes


Department
Philosophy
Course Code
PHL105Y5
Professor
Jonathan Peterson

This preview shows half of the first page. to view the full 1 pages of the document.
Parfit Text Notes
Simple Teletransportation: I go through a teleportation device where I am scanned destroyed at
point A and recreated at point B.
Branch-Line Case: I go through a teleportation device where I am scanned and recreated
somewhere else, but the first me is not destroyed.
Qualitatively identical – exactly alike in appearance and personality
Numerically identical – one and the same.
Three questions to ask:
1What is the nature of a person?
2What makes a person at two different times one and the same person? What is necessarily
involved in the continued existence of a person over time?
3What is in fact involved in the continued existence of each person over time?
Physical Criterion: (1) What is necessary is not the continued existence of the whole body, but the
continued existence of enough of the brain to be the brain of a living person. X today is one and
the same person as Y at some past time if and only if (2) enough of Y's brain continued to exist, and
is now X's brain, and (3) this physical continuity has not taken a “branching” form. (4) Personal
identity over time just consists in the holding of facts like (2) and (3).
Psychological Criterion: (1) There is a psychological continuity if and only if there are
overlapping chains of strong connectedness. X today is one and the same person as Y at some past
time if and only if (2) X is psychologically continuous with Y, (3) this continuity has the right kind
of cause, and (4) it has not taken a “branching” form. (5) Personal identity over time just consists
in the holding of facts like (2) and (4).
Reductionist Criterion: The question “is he the same person” is neither true nor false. Personal
Identity is not what matters. What matters is Relation R: psychological connectedness and/or
continuity, with the right kind of cause. What unites the different experiences that are had by a
single person at the same time is that the subject of the experiences is the same.
In branch-Line case, if personal identity matters, dying would be just as bad as ordinary death. But
if personal identity is not what matters and Relation R is what matters, dying is as good as
surviving.
EXAMPLE: A club ceased to exist for a few years, then was revived by a few existing members.
Is this the same club that existed from before? The answer is neither yes nor no. It is an empty
question,
You're Reading a Preview

Unlock to view full version