Zombie Killer

Document Type: 
Book Chapter
Article Type: 
Theoretical
Disciplines: 
Philosophy
Topics: 
Theory of Consciousness
Keywords: 
consciousness, hard problem, zombie, zombi, qualia
Deposited by: 
Dr Nigel J.T. Thomas
Date of Issue: 
1998
Authors: 
Nigel J.T. Thomas
Title of Book: 
Toward a Science of Consciousness II: The Second Tucson Discussions and Debates
Page Range: 
171-177
Number of Pages: 
6
Publisher: 
MIT Press
Place of Publication: 
Cambridge, MA
ISBN: 
0-262-08249-7
Alternative URL: 
http://www.imagery-imagination.com/zom-abs.htm
Abstract: 
It is argued that the concept of a philosophical zombie, as it figures in arguments designed to refute functionalism or physicalism, contains inherent contradictions, and that, therefore, despite superficial intuitions to the contrary, zombies are not conceptually possible (as the anti-functionalist/materialist arguments require). Zombies will, ex hypothesis, claim to be conscious, but there is no coherent way to construe the truth value of this claim. Attempts to construe it either as true (by the zombie's own lights), as false, or as having no truth value all inevitably lead to contradictions and incoherencies. Thus zombic arguments agains functionalism and physicalism fail.
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