Title page for ETD etd-0411103-101951

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Cate, Gabriel Guy
URN etd-0411103-101951
Title Disarming the Externalist Threat to Self-Knowledge
Degree Master of Arts (M.A.)
Department Philosophy and Religious Studies
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Husain Sarkar Committee Chair
John Baker Committee Member
Jon Cogburn Committee Member
  • self-knowledge
  • externalism
Date of Defense 2003-04-08
Availability unrestricted
The purpose of this thesis is to examine various attempts to disarm the externalist threat to self-knowledge. That threat is engendered by a certain causal theory of meaning and reference, which suggests that empirical investigations may be required to know the contents of our own thoughts. It is claimed, then, that direct, non-inferential self-knowledge of our own mental states, is not possible if externalism is true. The leading compatibilist strategies that attempt to reconcile these apparently conflicting theses are explored and criticized. I conclude by offering what I take to be the essential features of a more successful compatibilist strategy.
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