Conscious thought allows us to think about the world, but also about counterfactual situations. It is part of what makes us human. Keith Frankish discusses the nature of conscious thought in this episode of Mind Bites which we are releasing on Philosophy Bites. Mind Bites is part of Nicholas Shea's ARHC-funded project Meaning for the Brain and Meaning for the Person.
Subjective experience leads to the so-called 'hard problem' of consciousness: the difficulty of explaining qualia in terms of the brain. Keith Frankish discusses both the problem and a possible solution in this episode of the Philosophy Bites podcast.
In the early part of the Twentieth Century Gottlob Frege, Bertrand Russell, and Ludwig Wittgenstein transformed philosophy: they emphasized the logical form of language. Ludwig Wittgenstein later repudiated his earlier philosophy, concentrating on how people actually use language, the things they do do with words. Together with J.L. Austin, Gilbert Ryle and others, he initiated what has come to be known as the Linguistic Turn in philosophy. For this episode of the Philosophy Bites podcast, Rom Harré, whose PhD supervisor was Austin, discusses the Linguistic Turn with Nigel Warburton.
Can a computer think? John Searle famously used the Chinese Room thought experiment to suggest that it can't. Daniel Dennett is not convinced. He thinks that Searle's thought experiment is what he calls a 'boom crutch' - a faulty intuition pump. Here, in conversation with Nigel Warburton, he explains why.
Are we simply material beings? Do we have an immaterial soul? Can we know this? These questions have vexed philosophers for millenia. Avicenna, who was born in the 10th Century believed he could show that we are not simply physical through a thought experiment, the Flying Man. Peter Adamson discusses this idea with Nigel Warburton in this episode of the Philosophy Bites podcast.