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Against Qualia

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The problem of consciousness is the problem of how to understand how conscious events, states and processes are realised in the brain. In order to have an adequate conception of this problem, we have to be able to state it in the clearest possible terms. Many philosophers and some psychologists like to describe conscious phenomena in terms of ‘qualia’, or simple intrinsic properties of experience. Some then go on to conceive of a solution to the problem of consciousness in terms of finding the neural correlates of qualia. In this talk I will explain the many confusions surrounding the notion of qualia and why we should not think of the problem of consciousness in terms of this notion.

This talk is part of the Zangwill Club series.

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