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Hylomorphism: Emergent Properties without Emergentism

  • William JaworskiEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Historical-Analytical Studies on Nature, Mind and Action book series (HSNA, volume 2)

Abstract

Hylomorphism claims that structure is a basic ontological and explanatory principle. It accounts for what things are and what they can do. The hylomorphic notion of structure provides resources for understanding the place of mind in the natural world. The activities of living things like us are not random physiological occurrences; they are physiological occurrences with a certain organization or structure. We engage in them by imposing an order on the ways our parts manifest their powers. According to the hylomorphic view I defend, thought, feeling, perception, and intentional action are structured activities of this sort. The result is a theory of mental phenomena that rejects physicalism but that is nevertheless naturalistic. It is also antireductive: it denies that psychological discourse is reducible to physical theory. Finally, it provides an unmysterious account of how mental phenomena fit within the natural world.

Keywords

Hylomorphism Physicalism Emergentism Structure Organization Mind Reduction Naturalism Powers Dispositions Mind-body problem Composition Perception Embodiment Supervenience Determination Emergence 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Fordham UniversityBronxUSA

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