The 'hard' problem of consciousness is continually reproduced and made harder by all attempts to solve it

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I argue that the so-called 'hard' problem of consciousness ' the problem of how consciousness is possible at all, and how it 'connects' with matter ' is only an artefact of the ways in which human scientists approach consciousness and (more generally) mind. Putting the point paradoxically but also quite precisely: the efforts to solve the mind'body problem, and this its latest variant form, are the very disease of which they take themselves to be the cure. I give examples drawn from sociology and from philosophy to support this claim, and then try to mitigate this vicious consequence of Cognitivism in both disciplines by offering a Wittgensteinian dissolution of the (pseudo-)problem as an alternative to (hopeless) cognitivist efforts to solve it.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-86
Number of pages36
JournalTheory, Culture and Society
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2008


  • Chomsky
  • Colin McGinn
  • Dance
  • Dancer
  • Fodor
  • Wittgenstein
  • Cognition
  • Consciousness
  • Ludwig Joseph Johann
  • Cognitivism

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