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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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Bodily Awareness and Self-Consciousness

Bodily Awareness and Self-Consciousness

(p.155) 6 Bodily Awareness and Self-Consciousness
The Bodily Self

José Luis Bermúdez

The MIT Press

We are embodied, and we are aware of our bodies ‘from the inside’ through different forms of bodily awareness. But what is the relation between these two facts? Are these forms of bodily awareness types of self-consciousness, on a par, say, with introspection? In this paper I argue that bodily awareness is a basic form of self-consciousness, through which perceiving agents are directly conscious of the bodily self. The first two sections clarify the nature of bodily awareness. Sections III to V I explore how bodily awareness functions as a form of self-consciousness and how this is connected to the property of being immune to error through misidentification relative to the first person pronoun. In section IV I consider, and remain unconvinced by, an argument to the effect that bodily awareness cannot have first person content (and hence cannot count as a form of self-consciousness). Finally, section V sketches out an account of the spatial content of bodily awareness and explores the particular type of awareness of the bodily self that it provides.

Keywords:   Self-consciousness, Bodily awareness, Proprioception, Immunity to error through misidentification, A-location/B-location, Ownership, Knowledge without observation

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