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Zeno's metrical paradox of extension and Descartes' mind-body problem


Ferber, Rafael (2010). Zeno's metrical paradox of extension and Descartes' mind-body problem. In: Giombini, Stefania; Marcacci, Flavia. Il quinto secolo. Studi di filosofia antica in onore di Livio Rossetti. Passignano s.T.: Aguaplano, 295-310.

Abstract

The article uses Zeno’s metrical paradox of extension, or Zeno’s fundamental paradox, as a thought model for the mind-body problem. With the help of this model, the distinction contained between mental and physical phenomena can be formulated as sharply as possible. I formulate (I) Zeno’s fundamental paradox and give a sketch of four different solutions to it. Then (II) I construct a mind-body paradox corresponding to the fundamental paradox. Through that, it becomes possible (III) to copy the solutions to the fundamental paradox on the mind-body paradox. Three of them fail. But (IV) one of them – the Aristotelian one – gives us an interesting hint. Finally (V), this hint is pursued somewhat further and (VI), through comparison with Zeno’s fundamental paradox, the impossibility of a solution to the mind-body problem is shown again. The main new point of this article is the comparison of the mind-body problem with Zeno’s fundamental paradox.

Abstract

The article uses Zeno’s metrical paradox of extension, or Zeno’s fundamental paradox, as a thought model for the mind-body problem. With the help of this model, the distinction contained between mental and physical phenomena can be formulated as sharply as possible. I formulate (I) Zeno’s fundamental paradox and give a sketch of four different solutions to it. Then (II) I construct a mind-body paradox corresponding to the fundamental paradox. Through that, it becomes possible (III) to copy the solutions to the fundamental paradox on the mind-body paradox. Three of them fail. But (IV) one of them – the Aristotelian one – gives us an interesting hint. Finally (V), this hint is pursued somewhat further and (VI), through comparison with Zeno’s fundamental paradox, the impossibility of a solution to the mind-body problem is shown again. The main new point of this article is the comparison of the mind-body problem with Zeno’s fundamental paradox.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Book Section, refereed, further contribution
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Philosophy
Dewey Decimal Classification:100 Philosophy
Language:English
Date:October 2010
Deposited On:07 Feb 2011 07:56
Last Modified:05 Aug 2021 08:58
Publisher:Aguaplano
ISBN:978-88-904213-4-1
Additional Information:The article is a revised English version of an article published in: “Allgemeine Zeitschrift für Philosophie”, 23, 1998, pp. 61-75.
OA Status:Green
Official URL:http://www.aguaplano.eu/index.php?content=Vsecolo
Related URLs:http://www.aguaplano.eu (Publisher)

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