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Mind, Language, And Society: Philosophy In The Real World (Masterminds) download epub

by John R. Searle


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In fact, I recall that Searle presented some of this material in undergraduate courses at Berkeley in the late 1970s.

the ability to refer to or "fit" the external world); and intentionality allows human minds to create social institutions and vest meaning in words. Searle transcends standard materialist and dualist positions in philosophy. In fact, I recall that Searle presented some of this material in undergraduate courses at Berkeley in the late 1970s.

John Searle brings these notions down from their abstract heights to the terra firma of real-world understanding, so that those with no knowledge of philosophy can understand how these principles play out in our everyday lives. The author stresses that there is a real world out there to deal with, and condemns the belief that the reality of our world is dependent on our perception of it.

Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Year: 1999. Publisher: Basic Books. Pages: 175. ISBN 10: 0-465-04521-9. ISBN 13: 978-0-465-04521-1.

John Searle brings those notions down from their summary heights to the terra firma of. .Similar Philosophy books.

Similar Philosophy books. Ideology and Utopia: An Introduction to the Sociology of Knowledge. Show sample text content.

Masterminds (Paperback). By (author) John R. Searle. Free delivery worldwide.

Willis S and Marion Slusser Professor of Philosophy John R Searle. Masterminds (Paperback). This button opens a dialog that displays additional images for this product with the option to zoom in or out. Tell us if something is incorrect.

This book summarizes this work, and very importantly, shows the interconnections and hierarchical arrangement of his ideas. Those new to Searle should read this as the introduction to his work; those familiar with his work will profit from the arrangement of all of his theories into a single, fully integrated, philosophy. Brilliant overview and summary of Searle's thought. Published by Thriftbooks. com User, 20 years ago.

John Searle's summation of earlier writings is not just an essential tie-up volume for existing readers; it is also a perfect introduction to the work of one of the clearest heads in the philosophy of mind

John Searle's summation of earlier writings is not just an essential tie-up volume for existing readers; it is also a perfect introduction to the work of one of the clearest heads in the philosophy of mind.

Disillusionment with psychology is leading more and more people to formal philosophy for clues about how to think about life. But most of us who try to grapple with concepts such as reality, truth, common sense, consciousness, and society lack the rigorous training to discuss them with any confidence. John Searle brings these notions down from their abstract heights to the terra firma of real-world understanding, so that those with no knowledge of philosophy can understand how these principles play out in our everyday lives. The author stresses that there is a real world out there to deal with, and condemns the belief that the reality of our world is dependent on our perception of it.

Comments: (7)

Oghmaghma
In this short, readable book, John Searle gives an account of how minds, language, and social institutions are situated within a material universe. The account goes roughly like this: consciousness is a biological phenomena; conscious minds exhibit intentionality (i.e., the ability to refer to or "fit" the external world); and intentionality allows human minds to create social institutions and vest meaning in words. Searle transcends standard materialist and dualist positions in philosophy. He insists that mental, social, and linguistic phenomena must be explained in natural terms, but he does not try to "reduce" them to other categories or "explain" them out of existence. Along the way, he discusses a variety of issues ranging from realism to philosophical method.

A professor at UC Berkeley, Searle has a genius for cutting to the heart of a philosophical position and keeping his concepts tied to reality and common experience. He also writes so well that it's hard not to be carried along by his argument. At the same time, I never really bought his argument that consciousness is a purely biological category, especially after he conceded that "first person" conscious experiences cannot be reduced to "third person" facts about brains. Nor did I understand his account of how consciouness operates as a "macro" feature of the brain able to cause effects in "micro" features such as neurons. He draws an analogy with an automobile engine, where macro-features such as pistons and spark plugs have causal effects even though everything in the engine obeys the laws of subatomic physics. Unfortunately, the analogy doesn't convince: whatever else consciousness is, it doesn't seem to function like a piston. Searle blames our inability to see the force of his analogy on our cramped intuitions about causation. He doesn't provide any alternative intuitions.

It seems undeniable that conscious experience is constructed by material brains -- anyone who doubts this should read a few clinical essays by Oliver Sacks or A. R. Luria that describe the deformed consciousness of brain-injured patients. However, the mind also exhibits so many non-physical features that fitting it into "nature" may be harder than Searle lets on. The puzzle isn't solved -- just restated -- by insisting, "The mind is OBVIOUSLY real (so materialism is false), the mind is OBVIOUSLY part of the brain (so dualism is false), the mind OBVIOUSLY can cause effects in the brain (so epiphenomenalism is false)," and so forth. Maybe Searle is right that materialism and dualism are outmoded categories. Even so, consciousness is such a peculiar biological phenomenon, and so totally unlike any other process or feature of our bodies, that dualistic philosophies will inevitably emerge to account for it -- and will, in turn, spawn materialistic counter-philosophies aimed at resolving the paradoxes of dualism. The dualism/materialism debate may be sterile, but I doubt that Searle has brought it to an end.

None of these remarks should be taken as serious criticism of "Mind, Language, and Society," which covers a lot of ground beside the mind/body question. In only 150 pages or so, the book summarizes work Searle has published over the years in modern classics such as "The Rediscovery of the Mind," "Intentionality," and "The Construction of Social Reality." In fact, I recall that Searle presented some of this material in undergraduate courses at Berkeley in the late 1970s. Even though Searle doesn't discuss the free will problem or give equal time to opposing positions, his book is first-rate, and I definitely want to read it a second time. Anyone who has already taken a few introductory classes in philosophy and wants to probe deeper into the subject would benefit from reading it.
Yllk
For a philosopher to reach the core of how we think and feel must overcome abstraction to reach people who find the philosophical approach too dry. One must feel challenged to explore himself and writings of others to find common ground which does not rely upon authoritarian pronouncements by acknowledged experts in the field. Many people need non-fiction to dress conclusions up in appealing stories. This is what the Bible and Koran do but call it the word of the almighty. As the number of non-theists in the world keeps rising, and churches find their pews largely empty, someone has to find another way to explain the human need to communicate without submitting to the authority of revelation. John Searle has been doing this for a long time, and does not come across with the anger that many non-theists express at those who accept the authority of religious writing and preaching. His book is orderly and appeals to both the analytical mind and the holistic emotional one. His book tries to persuade us to work at understanding ourselves and how to work with others. This supports the groundwork of a functional society and maturation of individuals so as to feel comfortable in a life which helps us find our own goals which we can share with others.
He wants us to realize that we have free choice for what we do and that bowing to a creator-image who determines every function of our brains and actions is not realistic.Some philosophers make human life just like artificial intelligence, despite what seems to be impossible complexity.John thinks we do the choosing, not a creator, but the necessities of staying alive means many decisions are at the cellular level, beyond our conscious choosing. Further, we run out of energy, ultimately leading to death, with no afterworld beyond our imagination.This book helps us to feel better about what we have got, and how to preserve it, to whatever degree we can.
Kelezel
A friend and I meet each Saturday for breakfast and then discuss a section from this book. It has generated a wonderful dialogue and made philosophical tenets accessible to modestly trained philosophers. Searle is one of my favorite authors, His work of speech acts is fascinating and throws light communication processes and the psychology of language.
Moralsa
Overall, I think Searle is right on the mark with his view on consciousness as a biological function and language/institutions as an artifact of consciousnesses interacting. The clarity and insight is excellent - and he's right: once someone says it (i.e., him), it all sound so simple and obvious.
The only complaint that I have are the frequent use of the philosopher's "It seems to me" style of argument, which "seems to me" to leave him an easy "out" if counter arguments arise. I also disagree with some of his conclusions, such as the notion of "status function".
But none of that stopped me from enjoying the book!
Golkis
Searle is always a pleasure to read. He does a great job at giving concise summaries of his ideas- this book is a boiled down version of a life of work - and is, as always, eminently readable.

I have former familiarity with his thoughts, but I think anyone can enjoy this. Google is always available for more details on a concept!
Mind, Language, And Society: Philosophy In The Real World (Masterminds) download epub
Philosophy
Author: John R. Searle
ISBN: 0465045197
Category: Politics & Social Sciences
Subcategory: Philosophy
Language: English
Publisher: Basic Books; 1st edition (December 15, 1998)
Pages: 192 pages