Single Idea 9263

[catalogued under 16. Persons / B. Nature of the Self / 7. Self and Body / a. Self needs body]

Full Idea

What I mean by the concept of a person is the concept of a type of entity such that both predicates ascribing states of consciousness and predicates ascribing corporeal characteristics are equally applicable to a single individual of that single type.

Gist of Idea

A person is an entity to which we can ascribe predicates of consciousness and corporeality


Peter F. Strawson (Individuals:Essay in Descript Metaphysics [1959], 3.4)

Book Reference

Strawson,Peter F.: 'Individuals: Essay in Descriptive Metaphysics' [Methuen University 1974], p.101

A Reaction

As Frankfurt points out, merely requiring the entity to be 'conscious' is a grossly inadequate definition of what we mean by a person, which is typically a being that is self-aware and capable of rational decisions between alternatives.