Robots, Zombies and Us: Understanding Consciousness

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9781474286589: Robots, Zombies and Us: Understanding Consciousness

Could robots be genuinely intelligent? Could they be conscious? Could there be zombies? Prompted by these questions Robert Kirk introduces the main problems of consciousness and sets out a new approach to solving them.

He starts by discussing behaviourism, Turing's test of intelligence and Searle's famous Chinese Room argument, and goes on to examine dualism – the idea that consciousness requires something beyond the physical – together with its opposite, physicalism. Probing the idea of zombies, he concludes they are logically impossible. Having presented the central problems, he sketches his solution: a version of functionalism, according to which consciousness consists in the performance of functions.

While there is wide agreement among philosophers about what the main problems of consciousness are, there is little agreement on how to go about solving them. With this powerful case for his version of functionalism, Kirk offers an engaging introduction to both the problems and a possible solution.

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About the Author:

Robert Kirk is Emeritus Professor in the Philosophy Department at Nottingham University, UK. His books include Raw Feeling (OUP 1994), Mind and Body (Acumen 2003), Zombies and Consciousness (OUP 2005), and The Conceptual Link from Physical to Mental (OUP 2013).

Review:

Kirk provides an excellent overview of the philosophical study of consciousness that is at once packed with arguments and accessible to those who are just beginning their study of consciousness. -- Richard Brown, Professor of Philosophy, LaGuardia Community College, CUNY, USA The zombie thought experiment has tormented philosophers for decades. In an ambitious book, Kirk presents an ingenious argument intended to remove the zombie threat once and for all. Like everything in philosophy, it's wildly controversial. But if it works, Kirk has found the Holy Grail: a solution to the hard problem of consciousness, and a theory that can integrate consciousness into our scientific picture of the world. -- Philip Anthony Goff, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Central European University, Hungary.

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Book Description Bloomsbury Publishing PLC, United Kingdom, 2017. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Could robots be genuinely intelligent? Could they be conscious? Could there be zombies? Prompted by these questions Robert Kirk introduces the main problems of consciousness and sets out a new approach to solving them. He starts by discussing behaviourism, Turing s test of intelligence and Searle s famous Chinese Room argument, and goes on to examine dualism - the idea that consciousness requires something beyond the physical - together with its opposite, physicalism. Probing the idea of zombies, he concludes they are logically impossible. Having presented the central problems, he sketches his solution: a version of functionalism, according to which consciousness consists in the performance of functions. While there is wide agreement among philosophers about what the main problems of consciousness are, there is little agreement on how to go about solving them. With this powerful case for his version of functionalism, Kirk offers an engaging introduction to both the problems and a possible solution. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9781474286589

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Book Description Bloomsbury Publishing PLC, United Kingdom, 2017. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Could robots be genuinely intelligent? Could they be conscious? Could there be zombies? Prompted by these questions Robert Kirk introduces the main problems of consciousness and sets out a new approach to solving them. He starts by discussing behaviourism, Turing s test of intelligence and Searle s famous Chinese Room argument, and goes on to examine dualism - the idea that consciousness requires something beyond the physical - together with its opposite, physicalism. Probing the idea of zombies, he concludes they are logically impossible. Having presented the central problems, he sketches his solution: a version of functionalism, according to which consciousness consists in the performance of functions. While there is wide agreement among philosophers about what the main problems of consciousness are, there is little agreement on how to go about solving them. With this powerful case for his version of functionalism, Kirk offers an engaging introduction to both the problems and a possible solution. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9781474286589

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