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The Consciousness ParadoxConsciousness, Concepts, and Higher-Order Thoughts$
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Rocco J. Gennaro

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780262016605

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262016605.001.0001

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Assessing Three Close Rivals

Assessing Three Close Rivals

(p.39) 3 Assessing Three Close Rivals
The Consciousness Paradox

Rocco J. Gennaro

The MIT Press

This chapter can be considered as an additional argument by elimination in support for the HOT Thesis. It would be impossible to attempt to refute all, or most, philosophical theories of consciousness existing at the present time, but this chapter presents a criticism of three related theories that share the common goal of offering a reductive theory of consciousness in mentalistic terms. It begins by offering a criticism of first-order representationalism (FOR), specifically Tye’s PANIC theory and Dretske’s own version of FOR, which refers to theories that attempt to explain conscious experience primarily in terms of first-order intentional states. A rejection of Carruthers’s dual-content or dispositional HOT theory as well as a criticism of Lycan’s higher-order perception (HOP) theory follow suit in an effort to make the case for the HOT Thesis.

Keywords:   first-order representationalism, FOR, Tye, PANIC theory, Dretske, Carruthers, dispositional HOT theory, Lycan, higher-order perception theory, HOP

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