Zoltán Vecsey:
A priori Physikalismus

As is well known, the contemporary view of a posteriori physicalism is closely connected with the questions of semantics. Kripke demonstrated in Naming and Necessity that there are rigid designators − proper names and natural kind terms − that pick out the same thing across possible worlds. Some post-Kripkean philosophers maintain that the mechanism of rigid designation can show how mental facts are reductively explainable in terms of micro-physical ones. The key idea is that mental statements are linked to micro-physical statements through a priori conditionals. This line of thought has been put forward recently by David Chalmers, Frank Jackson and David Braddon-Mitchell, among others. Chalmers and Jackson claim further that a priori conceptual relations could be derived with the help of the traditional method of consulting intuitions about hypothetical cases. I argue at the end of my paper that this latter strategy suffers from a structural problem.

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