Escher’s shiniest bowling ball.
In this, the final post of the Transcending Zombies series, I close with some brief responses to a possible objection.
One line of resistance to the current argument will come from people who attribute phenomenal consciousness to babies and non-human animals but do not attribute concepts to them. However, such a line overlooks the evidence that lots of non-adults and non-humans have states that satisfy the criteria for conceptualized egocentric contents. I will not review that evidence here. (Although, see my “The Neural Accomplishment of Objectivity”). I turn instead to a different response.
My response is that while I grant that babies and non-humans no doubt lack the very concepts I use in my experiences of chairs and coffee mugs, I refuse to grant that babies and animals lack concepts altogether. While lacking concepts of chairs and mugs as such, they likely have, e.g., a concept of an object. And such concepts will suffice for the Allocentric portions of implementations of the Allocentric-Egocentric Interface theory.
My opponents would have a serious objection on their hands if they could show that, despite applying different concepts than the concepts that I apply in my experience, babies and non-human animals can have experiences phenomenally identical to my own. Another way they could have a serious objection would be if they could show that babies and non-human animals have absolutely no concepts whatsoever but nonetheless have phenomenally conscious states. However, I really don’t see how they could show either of these things. And if my imagined objector is simply asserting that such things are possible, then the imagined objection is simply question-begging.
1. Introducing Transcending Zombies
2. Anti-Skeptical Maneuvers
3. I Know I’m Not a Zombie
4. Some Remarks on Phenomenal Knowledge
5. The Egocentricity of Phenomenal Knowledge
6. The Knowing and the Known
7. My Physical Properties Fix My Conceptualized Contents
8. My Physical Properties Fix My Egocentric Contents
9. TZ & AEI
10. Raffman’s Rainbow Unraveled
11. Over the Rainbow