On characterizing the physical

Wilson, Jessica
October 2006
Philosophical Studies;Oct2006, Vol. 131 Issue 1, p61
Academic Journal
How should physical entities be characterized? Physicalists, who have most to do with the notion, usually characterize the physical by reference to two components,1 1. The physical entities are the entities treated by fundamental physics with the proviso that 2. Physical entities are not fundamentally mental (that is, do not individually possess or bestow mentality). Here I will explore the extent to which appeals to fundamental physics and to the NFM (no fundamental mentality) constraint are appropriate for characterizing the physical, especially for purposes of formulating physicalism. I will motivate and defend a version of an account incorporating both components.


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