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Something Like Ability

Noordhof, P. (2003) Something Like Ability. Australasian Journal of Philosophy, 81 (1). pp. 21-40. ISSN 0004-8402

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One diagnosis of what is wrong with the Knowledge Argument rests on the Ability Hypothesis. This couples an ability analysis of knowing what an experience is like together with a denial that phenomenal propositions exist. I argue against both components. I consider three arguments against the existence of phenomenal propositions and find them wanting. Nevertheless I deny that knowing phenomenal propositions is part of knowing what an experience is like. I provide a hybrid account of knowing what an experience is like which is the coherent expression of a single idea: knowing what an experience is like is knowing what it would be like to have the phenomenal content of the experience as the content of an experience one is currently having. I explain how my conclusions indicate that the focus of discussion should be on the alleged explanatory gap between phenomenal facts and physical facts and not on the Knowledge Argument. The latter is a poor expression of the difficulty Physicalists face.

Item Type: Article
Institution: The University of York
Academic Units: The University of York > Philosophy (York)
Depositing User: York RAE Import
Date Deposited: 13 Aug 2009 15:00
Last Modified: 13 Aug 2009 15:00
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/713659582
Status: Published
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Identification Number: 10.1080/713659582
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/5683

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