Single Idea 1392

[catalogued under 16. Persons / D. Continuity of the Self / 4. Split Consciousness]

Full Idea

In the case of the man who, like an amoeba, divides….we can suggest that he survives as two different people without implying that he is those people.

Gist of Idea

If we split like amoeba, we would be two people, neither of them being us


Derek Parfit (Personal Identity [1971], §1)

Book Reference

'Personal Identity', ed/tr. Perry,John [University of California 1975], p.203

A Reaction

Maybe an amoeba is a homogeneous substance for which splitting is insignificant, but when a person has certain parts that are totally crucial, splitting them is catastrophic, and quite different. I'm not sure that splitting a self would leave persons.