- Early Modern: Locke on Personal Identity, Part 1
- Early Modern: Locke on Personal Identity, Part 2
- Early Modern: Locke on Personal Identity, Part 3
- Early Modern: Descartes' Cogito Argument
- Early Modern: Émilie du Châtelet, Part 1
- Early Modern: Émilie du Châtelet, Part 2
- Early Modern: Margaret Cavendish, Part 1
- Early Modern: Margaret Cavendish, Part 2
Part 1 of 3. What makes you the same person as the little kid growing up a number of years ago? Is the identity of a person tied to the persistence of a body or a soul or something else entirely? Can we even give any explanation at all of the persistence of a person? Michael Della Rocca (Yale University) explores some of the puzzles and problems of personal identity that arise from the revolutionary work of the philosopher John Locke.
Speaker: Dr. Michael Della Rocca, Andrew Downey Orrick Professor of Philosophy, Yale University.
Want to join the conversation?
- Correct me if I am wrong: Is personal identity is a specific case of the ship of Theseus? https://www.khanacademy.org/partner-content/wi-phi/metaphys-epistemology/v/ship-of-theseus(15 votes)
- The ship of thesus is a problem that comes up with trying to figure out what the identity conditions of an artifact might be. The lectures on personal identity are Locke's views on what makes something a person over time. Both of them are a part of a larger question, "What is it for a thing to persist through time?" However you might think the answer to that question depends on the kind of thing we are talking about. At least, this is what Locke thought and therefore his theory of personal identity is different from his theory of plant identity, etc.(6 votes)
- It seems to me that no object or person is exactly the same from one second to the next. What I think makes us believe that a person or an object has the same identity as the person or object we saw the previous week is that there is nothing closer in similarity to that person or object existing and so by default we assume it to be of the same identity. I am new to philosophy, but find the discussions very interesting. Can anybody tell me if any discoveries in other fields such as astronomy, mathematics or technology have had any impacts on questions in philosophy or conversely have breakthroughs in philosophy impacted unanswered questions in mathematics or physics.(4 votes)
- According to you, there's no sameness. Everything changes with time. But that would mean, as only one corollary, I'm not responsible for what I did yesterday. This is not the way everyone thinks...people assume sameness over time. Are you saying this is an illusion?
I agree in the physical sense-its easy to see that the matter that make us is in constant flux with the environment.
But what of the mind? Are you saying the views we hold and the memories we have are actually us? When they change so do we? But how do you explain the self who is considered to possess these thoughts and memories? Is the notion of a self an illusion?(3 votes)
- is the phrase "in virtue of which," for example8:21, an essential part of framing the problem/question or is it a vestigial convention of some sort?(4 votes)
- That's a good question. It is definitely not an essential part of framing the problem (that is, you can state the claim in other ways). For example, "what grounds identity", "what makes it true that is A=B", etc. However, it is a common term used in philosophy.(3 votes)
- Isn't the first part of the video how he discusses that advancements in an idea shed new light on the problem.
Isn't that the same thing? As people change over time, they are the same person.
As a problem changes over time it is the same problem.
It seems by this logic then, what changes an idea or a person is the light shed on it. The way we view the idea and ourselves.(1 vote)
- Brains constantly reshape themselves with new info being learned and old info being forgotten.
Cells die and other cells divide and emerge. The organic system is always changing. I am NOT the same person I was 3 months ago. People DO change. Animals change. Plants change. Humans grow (older), they change psychologically, physically, they change their views, their religion and their ideologies.
This debate is useless. An innate object (object without consciousness, NOTE that I didn't use the dogmatic word 'soul') stays the same unless an outside force changes its structure/appearance/chemical configuration.
It's really easy and some 'metaphysical' philosofers want to make a big deal about all this (Heidegger, Sartre, Nietsche, .....) Pure loss of time. Anyone another viewpoint? I'm open to other opinions :D(1 vote)
- Everything use to change on every being physic but his identity remain the same.even if you change your name ,you will still be the person you was. hence the person identity is the very one in the present past and futur time.(1 vote)
- Is it truly correct to call the questions of philosophy problems in so much as the term problems implies that their are solutions? I think a more appropriate term is life questions or perhaps contemplatives, in that these in themselves exist in order to be explored.(1 vote)
- I think that there are pretty obviously answers to many philosophical questions, such as "Do mind-independent objects exist?" This is a question than can be answered with either yes or no, and there really seem to be only two possibilities which contradict each other. So even if we never find the solution to this problem, I think that there is one.(1 vote)
- I don't understand exactly what both statements are saying, e.g. A relation such that if 'A' is identical to 'B' then 'A' and 'B' stand in this relation. If someone could explain each phrase in a simpler form that would be great!(1 vote)