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The Bodily SelfSelected Essays$
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José Luis Bermúdez

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780262037501

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262037501.001.0001

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The Elusiveness Thesis, Immunity to Error through Misidentification, and Privileged Access

The Elusiveness Thesis, Immunity to Error through Misidentification, and Privileged Access

Chapter:
(p.97) 4 The Elusiveness Thesis, Immunity to Error through Misidentification, and Privileged Access
Source:
The Bodily Self
Author(s):

José Luis Bermúdez

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262037501.003.0005

Two ideas have played a prominent role in philosophical discussions of self-knowledge. The first is the idea that we enjoy introspective ways of finding out about ourselves are fundamentally different from our ways of finding out about ordinary physical objects and other psychological subjects. The second is the idea (Hume’s elusiveness thesis) that when we find out about our own properties through introspection we are not acquainted with any object whose properties they are. It is natural to think that these two ideas are related – and, in particular, that it is (at least partly) because we do not encounter the self as an object in introspection that the knowledge of the self gained through introspection is epistemically privileged. This paper explores this idea in the context of awareness of one’s own body in proprioception and in ordinary perceptual awareness.

Keywords:   Elusiveness thesis, Introspection, Privileged access, Ecological perception, Bodily awareness, Immunity to error through misidentification

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