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A Physicalist Manifesto: Thoroughly Modern Materialism (Cambridge Studies in Philosophy) Hardcover – October 20, 2003

ISBN-13: 978-0521827119 ISBN-10: 0521827116

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Product Details

  • Series: Cambridge Studies in Philosophy
  • Hardcover: 344 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press (October 20, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521827116
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521827119
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,505,225 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"This is unquestionably the best elucidation and defense of physicalism as a general world view ever produced by a philospher." Michael Tye, The University of Texas at Austin

"This excellent book by Andrew Melnyk is both timely and significant. It is timely because now is a good time to take stock of the physicalist debate over the past half century, and Melnyk does that with impressive systematicity and comprehensiveness. Moreover, the book is an important new contribution to that debate. Melnyk offers us a form of physicalism, "realization physicalism", that is robustly reductionist and yet non-eliminative - that is, reductive physicalism that respects the integrity of the casual/explanatory claims of the special sciences. Melnyk's physicalism is a far cry from the pale, insubstantial forms of nonreductive physicalism that have been dominant. One particulary valuable aspect of the book is its extensive coverage of the question of empirical support for physicalism. Here Melnyk goes far beyond those physicalism who take the attitude 'I say that mental states areR^ physical status - refute me if you can!'" Jaegwon Kim, Brown University

Book Description

A Physicalist Manifesto is the fullest and most comprehensive defense of a defense of a view of physicalism called "realization physicalism" in which everything either is or is realized by something physical. Written in a brisk and exceptionally clear style, this book should appeal to students and professionals in philosophy of mind, metaphysics and philosophy of science.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Skeptical Reader on April 22, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm more than a bit surprised that this book has not received any reviews yet. Although it may not be suitable for a general audience due to its use of philosophical terms of art, the arguments given can be followed without too much difficulty by any educated layperson. If you're an agnostic/atheist/secular humanist/skeptic (i.e., you don't believe in ghosts, goblins, or gods), you'll find in this book the philosophical reasoning behind what many people would probably call the "materialist" position, but philosophers call "physicalism." The author argues for a particular type of physicalism called "realization physicalism," which he shows can be framed as a scientific hypothesis. He then goes on to demonstrate how realization physicalism does a better job explaining the world as we know it than any competing viewpoint (such as dualism). If you've read books by Dawkins, Hitchens, Shermer, Martin, Stenger and so on, consider moving up to something more challenging, but ultimately more rewarding.
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More About the Author

Andrew Melnyk is interested in many aspects of the philosophy of science, and in all aspects of the philosophy of mind, but has published mostly in the metaphysics of mind, his work appearing in such journals as the Journal of Philosophy, Nous, Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, Philosophical Studies, and the Australasian Journal of Philosophy. His book, A Physicalist Manifesto: Thoroughly Modern Materialism, appeared in 2003 with Cambridge UP. He is presently a professor of philosophy and chair of the department at the University of Missouri-Columbia. Born in London, Andrew Melnyk was educated at St.Paul's School, London, and Oxford University.