The Scientific Study of Consciousness: Searle’s Radical Request

PSYCHE: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Research On Consciousness 16 (2):59-89 (2010)
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Abstract

John Searle offers what he thinks to be a reasonable scientific approach to the understanding of consciousness. I argue that Searle is demanding nothing less than a Kuhnian-type revolution with respect to how scientists should study consciousness given his rejection of the subject-object distinction and affirmation of mental causation. As part of my analysis, I reveal that Searle embraces a version of emergentism that is in tension, not only with his own account, but also with some of the theoretical tenets of science. I conclude that Searle has offered little to motivate scientists to adopt his proposal.

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Mahesh Ananth
Indiana University South Bend

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