Can the mind be explained in purely physical terms? Or is it something else entirely? In this interview, neurosurgeon Michael Egnor kicks off a three-part discussion with Dr. Angus Menuge about his book Minding the Brain: Models of the Mind, Information, and Empirical Science. The book brings together contributors from various academic disciplines to challenge the dominant materialist paradigm in the study of the mind-brain relationship. Menuge explains that materialism, or physicalism, is the belief that everything about human beings can be understood in the same way as physical processes in nature. However, this view neglects the subjective and intentional aspects of the mind. The interview discusses different theories that have attempted to explain the mind in purely physical terms, such as behaviorism, identity theory, and functionalism. Menuge argues that these theories fail to account for the unique properties of the mind, such as intentionality and consciousness. Menuge and Egnor conclude that materialism is an inadequate framework for understanding the mind and that alternative perspectives should be considered. This is Part 1 of 3.
- Minding the Brain: Models of the Mind, Information, and Empirical Science
- Michael Egnor is a Professor of Neurosurgery and Pediatrics at State University of New York, Stony Brook, has served as the Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery, and award-winning brain surgeon
- Angus J. L. Menuge is Chair of the Philosophy Department at Concordia University, Wisconsin