Life after Death
Quinton: In the past, although there was disagreement as to whether or not people actually did survive the death and dissolution of their bodies, it was not doubted that the personal survival of death was a conceivable possibility, that, whether it was true or false, it was an intelligible hypothesis. But in recent times many philosophers have denied this hitherto unquestioned assumption. They have argued that the mental life of human beings is in various ways essentially, and not just as a matter of earthly, and perhaps temporary, fact, bound up with their bodies. H. D. Lewis, professor of the history and philosophy of religion at King’s College in the university of London, is going to argue the case for the possibility of survival against the conviction, that is now widespread among philosophers, that it is inconceivable. After he has spoken Bernard Williams, who is Knightbridge professor of philosophy at Cambridge University, and who is a leading exponent of the view that persons must be embodied, will question him. I will take part in the discussion from a position which is, I think, suitably intermediate between Lewis’s positive belief in survival and Williams’s denial of its conceivability.
KeywordsMental Property Intellectual Activity Sensory Deprivation Colour Shape British Broadcasting Corporation
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