Volume 20, Issue 1, 2018
Symposium on Dualism and Physicalism
Jonathan J. Loose
The Constitution View
Not So Simple
Lynne Rudder Baker’s work was driven by commitments to quasi-naturalist materialism and the ontological distinctiveness of human persons. The incompatibility of these commitments is apparent in her constitution view (CV). Baker's “Not-so-simple Simple View” of personal identity is inferior to the Simple View traditionally associated with substance dualism since CV’s underlying account of persons is vacuous. It also entails a dilemma: either indeterminate identity or the problem of the many. Finally, CV also fails to support Baker’s view that human persons do not begin to exist prior to the acquisition of a capacity for conscious, intentional thought.