Examining the self essay | PHI 2010 | Florida International University, Modesto A. Maidique Campus

Assignment Topic
Imagine that you are a scientist, and write a proposal for creating a replica of yourself. (You cannot propose cloning yourself!) More specifically, you are asked to do the following:

Identify the processes that define you as a human being (e.g., digestion, sense perception) and that would be necessary to include in your replica.
Critically discuss whether you would propose a Cartesian or a physicalist model of the relationship between mind and body in order to create your replica. To “critically” discuss your proposed model, you must: a. explain either the Cartesian or the physicalist model; and b. weigh the pros and cons of whichever model you think would work best for your replica.
Using Locke’s theory of personal identity, present the criteria by which your replica will remain the same person over time.

Further Specifications:

You do not need to write a standard introduction with a thesis statement, as you have been required to do for earlier philosophy papers. You may simply begin with something like: “I am Professor [YOUR NAME] at Florida International University, and I am submitting a proposal to create a replica of myself.”
You should make use of the primary sources we studied (e.g., Descartes’ Meditations). You should not exclusively rely on secondary sources.

 

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