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The Human Animal: Personal Identity Without Psychology
Most philosophers writing about personal identity in recent years claim that what it takes for us to persist through time is a matter of psychology. In this groundbreaking new book, Eric Olson argues that such approaches face daunting problems, and he defends in their place a radically non-psychological account of personal identity. He defines human beings as biological ...more
Paperback, 200 pages
Published September 2nd 1999 by Oxford University Press, USA
(first published January 9th 1997)
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This brief, but densely packed book is a must-read in the metaphysics of personal identity. Olson is a fun writer to read, and displays immense skill in the framing and structuring of his argument. Parts I liked: the criticisms of the psychological approach, the constitution view, the bodily criterion, and the chapter 'Was I ever a fetus?' Part I didn't like as much: the casual dismissal of substance dualism, and the section in which he argues that personhood is a phase sortal like adulthood. ...more