Activity: Talks or Presentations › Other Invited Talks or Presentations
Does the self show up in experience? On the one hand, the existence of the self can seem to be the most certain fact that each of us knows. This was Descartes’ position and many philosophers—to say nothing of ordinary people—agree. At the same time, there are currents running through both Western and Eastern philosophy that call into question whether we ever directly experience the self. To help make progress in resolving this recalcitrant dispute, philosophers have begun to incorporate research on disorders of self-awareness such as depersonalization and thought insertion into their work. In particular, some have argued that reflection on these disorders supports the idea that the self shows up in experience. I argue that, properly understood, these disorders do not support that contention.