Churchland, Nagel, and Their Severe Critique of Folk Psychology

Tumkaya S.

TEOREMA, vol.40, no.3, pp.5-27, 2021 (AHCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 40 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Journal Name: TEOREMA
  • Journal Indexes: Arts and Humanities Citation Index (AHCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Fuente Academica Plus, Periodicals Index Online, Philosopher's Index, DIALNET
  • Page Numbers: pp.5-27
  • Keywords: Thomas Nagel, Churchland, Objective Phenomenology, Eliminative Materialism, Folk Psychology, Subjective Aspect of Experience, CONSCIOUSNESS, NEUROPHILOSOPHY
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


In this paper, I attempt to show that Thomas Nagel and Patricia Churchland, two seemingly very different philosophers of mind, in fact resemble each other quite closely in their severe critique of folk psychology. Due to folk psychology's deep inadequacies, both Nagel and Churchland have suggested important revisions to it, which, strikingly, have led both of them to call their positions "revisionist". This paper makes a significant contribution to the philosophy of mind literature, since almost all philosophers, including the Churchlands and Nagel themselves, understand the Churchlands and Nagel to espouse completely different philosophical views on these matters.