[SydPhil] Macquarie Philosophy Seminar: Michael Olson

Rachael Brown rachael.brown at mq.edu.au
Fri May 8 16:55:04 AEST 2015

Please note the following upcoming event as part of the Macquarie
University Philosophy Work in Progress Seminar Series

“Consciousness, Self-consciousness, and Anti-materialism in Classical
German Philosophy”

Michael Olson (Macquarie University)

Tuesday 12th May, 1-2pm

This paper focuses on conceptions of the soul and of the nature of
cognitive activity in post-Leibnizian German academic philosophy of the
eighteenth century.  Although many contemporary authors (Searle and Paul
Churchland, for example) frame their positions in debates about materialism
and consciousness with reference to the history of early modern philosophy,
I will try to show that the particular history to which these authors
appeal is not well suited to their purposes.  Although they play prominent
roles in twentieth century undergraduate philosophy curricula, Descartes’
Meditations and Leibniz’s Monadology are not particularly useful examples
of early modern anti-materialist arguments.  I will suggest some
alternative eighteenth-century sources that provide more developed
arguments against materialist accounts of cognition and so provide a richer
sense of the history of anti-materialism and the resources and challenges
it provides for contemporary investigations of the mind.

Feel free to bring your lunch.

Contact: Rachael Brown (rachael.brown at mq.edu.au), Paul Formosa (
paul.formosa at mq.edu.au), Mike Olson (michael.olson at mq.edu.au)

A google calendar with details of other events in this series is available
for viewing and subscription by following this link:

Other upcoming talks in this series:
May 19th: Jean-Philippe Deranty (Macquarie)
May 26th: Jeanette Kennett (Macquarie)
June 2nd: Carlos Bernal-Pulido (Macquarie)
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