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21.Locke on the self.docx

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Philosophy 1020
John Thorp

21. Locke on the self (aka 'personal identity') (November 22 2011) 0. Preliminary matter: two kinds of identity a) synchronic b) diachronic (spatiotemporal continuity) 1. The question of personal (diachronic) identity a person is a "thinking intelligent being, that has reason and reflection, and can consider itself as itself, the same thinking thing in different times and places…." a) continuity of consciousness is what constitutes personal identity a problem: interruption of consciousness b) immaterial substances problem: transmigration of souls c) Locke's solution: the identity of an interrupted consciousness is given by memory – the memory link problem: amnesia "Suppose I wholly lose the memory of some parts of my life, beyond a possibility of retrieving them, so that perhaps I shall never be conscious of them again; yet am I not the same person that did those actions, had those thoughts that I once was conscious of, though I have now forgot them?" Locke's answer: in that case I would be the same man as I was before, but I would not be the same pe
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