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The Concept of Mind

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  1,333 Ratings  ·  34 Reviews
This now-classic work challenges what Ryle calls philosophy's "official theory," the Cartesians "myth" of the separation of mind and matter. Ryle's linguistic analysis remaps the conceptual geography of mind, not so much solving traditional philosophical problems as dissolving them into the mere consequences of misguided language. His plain language and esstentially simple ...more
Paperback, 348 pages
Published December 15th 2000 by University Of Chicago Press (first published January 1st 1949)
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Roy Lotz
Men are not machines, not even ghost-ridden machines. They are men—a tautology which is sometimes worth remembering.

The problem of mind is one of those philosophical quandaries that give me a headache and prompt an onset of existential angst when I try to think about them. How does consciousness arise from matter? How can a network of nerves create a perspective? And how can this consciousness, in turn, influence the body it inhabits? When we look at a brain, or anywhere else in the ‘physical’
Jan 21, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: philosophy
This is a monumental book in modern philosophy which sets out to destroy the issue of dualism, expressed most succinctly by Descartes and often referred to as the mind/body problem. As a graduate student perusing this text, I was dismayed to read as Ryle apparently destroyed argument after argument which sustained Cartesian thinking.

Though this left me profoundly impressed at the time, I did not realize until much later that destroying a series of arguments concerning a given thing is not the s
Apr 08, 2013 added it
Shelves: philosophy, aha
My father's father's name is Gilbert Royal, Sr.

A riel is a monetary unit in one of those Asian countries, I forget which.

Sometimes I get riled up in a solipsistic muddle. It can become rather uncomfortable.

The copy of this book I was given early one morning was from a shared bookshelf in a shared rental residence that included at least one cat, at some point in time.

I am severely allergic to cats. I have been told by various health professionals that that allergy is in fact due to a specific pr
Jun 11, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: philosophy
lotsa fun. presents the well known "ghost in the machine" thesis, and develops the fallacy "category mistake." presents a persuasive deductive critique of the concept of "volition." eat that, objectivists!
Parinaz Esmaeili
Apr 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reference-books
Chapter 1 - Descartes Myth
Alexander Francis
May 07, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: philosophy
Concept of Mind
The common conception of how minds work is engrained in every facet of western society and culture. For centuries philosophers have been operating on various assumptions that without putting them to the test. This belief is that all humans, except possibly infants and idiots, have both a body and a mind. Human bodies are in space where human minds work outside of space. Being outside of space minds are not observable and therefore the possessors of these minds have privileged acc
Ralowe Ampu
Feb 02, 2017 rated it liked it
i might not be that into "analytic philosophy", but i just keep reading it. cybernetic social analysis for what? was brought here by the grace of the little description debates, queer literary sociologist heather love's co-organizing of "description across the disciplines" academic conference held at private ivy league columbia university in the city of new york in upper manhattan in the wood auditorium of avery hall thursday, april 23, 2015, wherein professor love's point was a criticism of the ...more
Joshua Stein
Ryle is indispensable reading for folks in the philosophy of mind or 20th century philosophy. Part of the reason that I wanted to revisit The Concept of Mind was to see how it stood up historically, and whether it was important to read Ryle or whether one might be better off reading him through those on whom he had a large influence. I think my most significant finding in this discussion is that it is really important for philosophers of mind to read Ryle and come away with their own interpretat ...more
Jan 19, 2012 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of Philosophy
Shelves: philosophy
Descartes helped establish the idea of the mind as a separate entity from the body, separate, perhaps, to the point of having altogether different origins. His theory bridged a gap opening up in his day between a newly natural conception of the universe and the traditional supernatural one. Cartesian dualism, in other words, made the intellectual arena safe for both scientists and theologians. Three centuries later comes this book, whose author, Gilbert Ryle, has decided to put paid to the two-t ...more
Frank Spencer
Aug 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing
certainly a classic; still has information that makes you think
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Gilbert Ryle was a British philosopher, and a representative of the generation of British ordinary language philosophers influenced by Wittgenstein's insights into language, and is principally known for his critique of Cartesian dualism, for which he coined the phrase "the ghost in the machine". Some of his ideas in the philosophy of mind have been referred to as "behaviourist" (not to be confused ...more
More about Gilbert Ryle...
“A person who has a good nose for arguments or jokes may have a bad head for facts.” 9 likes
“Minds are not bits of clockwork, they are just bits of not-clockwork. As thus represented, minds are not merely ghosts harnessed to machines, they are themselves just spectral machines. . . . Now the dogma of the Ghost in the Machine does just this. It maintains that there exist both bodies and minds; that there occur physical processes and mental processes; that there are mechanical causes of corporeal movements and mental causes of corporeal movements. I shall argue that these and other analogous conjunctions are absurd.” 5 likes
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