Volume 117, Issue 9, September 2020
Guarantee and Reflexivity
The rule account of self-conscious thought holds that a thought is self-conscious if and only if it contains a token of a concept-type that is governed by a reflexive rule. An account along these lines was discussed in the late 1970s. Nevertheless, very few philosophers endorse it nowadays. I shall argue that this summary dismissal is partly unjustified. There is one version of the rule account that can explain a key epistemic property of self-conscious thoughts: GUARANTEE. Along the way, I will rebut a number of objections and introduce two constraints on how the reflexive rule is implemented.