•  263
    Ontological emergentists about consciousness maintain that phenomenal properties are ontologically fundamental properties that are nonetheless non-basic: they emerge from reality only once the ultimate material constituents of reality (the “UPCs”) are suitable arranged. Ontological emergentism has been challenged on the grounds that it is insufficiently explanatory. In this essay, I develop the version of ontological emergentism I take to be the most explanatorily promising—the causal theory of …Read more
  •  219
    Conscious Intentionality in Perception, Imagination, and Cognition
    Phenomenology and Mind (10): 140-155. 2016.
    Participants in the cognitive phenomenology debate have proceeded by (a) proposing a bifurcation of theoretical options into inflationary and non-inflationary theories, and then (b) providing arguments for/against one of these theories. I suggest that this method has failed to illuminate the commonalities and differences among conscious intentional states of different types, in the absence of a theory of the structure of these states. I propose such a theory. In perception, phenomenal-intentiona…Read more
  •  180
    The Selection Problem for Constitutive Panpsychism
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 99 (3): 564-578. 2021.
    ABSTRACT Constitutive panpsychism is the doctrine that macro-level consciousness—that is, consciousness of the sort possessed by certain composite things such as humans—is built out of irreducibly mental features had by some or all of the basic physical constituents of reality. On constitutive panpsychism, changes in macro-level consciousness amount to changes in either the way that micro-conscious entities ‘bond’ or the way that micro-conscious qualities ‘blend’. I pose the ‘Selection Problem’ …Read more
  •  126
    The Role of Consciousness in Free Action
    In Joe Campbell, Kristin M. Mickelson & V. Alan White (eds.), Wiley Companion to Free Will, Wiley. forthcoming.
    It is intuitive that free action depends on consciousness in some way, since behavior that is unconsciously generated is widely regarded as un-free. But there is no clear consensus as to what such dependence comes to, in part because there is no clear consensus about either the cognitive role of consciousness or about the essential components of free action. I divide the space of possible views into four: the Constitution View (on which free actions metaphysically consist, at least in part, in p…Read more
  •  112
    Technological Innovation and Natural Law
    Philosophia Reformata 85 (2): 138-156. 2020.
    I discuss three tiers of technological innovation: mild innovation, or the acceleration by technology of a human activity aimed at a good; moderate innovation, or the obviation by technology of an activity aimed at a good; and radical innovation, or the altering by technology of the human condition so as to change what counts as a good. I argue that it is impossible to morally assess proposed innovations within any of these three tiers unless we rehabilitate a natural-law ethical framework. And …Read more
  •  94
    Angela Mendelovici’s book The Phenomenal Basis of Intentionality is a paradigm-establishing monograph within the phenomenal intentionality research program. Mendelovici argues that extant theories of intentionality that do not appeal to consciousness are both empirically and metaphysically inadequate, and a coherent, consciousness-based alternative can adequately explain (or explain away) all alleged cases of intentionality. While I count myself a fellow traveler, I discuss four choice-points wh…Read more
  •  79
    Phenomenal intentionality: reductionism vs. primitivism
    Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (5): 606-627. 2019.
    This paper explores the relationship between phenomenal properties and intentional properties. In recent years a number of philosophers have argued that intentional properties are sometimes necessitated by phenomenal properties, but have not explained why or how. Exceptions can be found in the work of Katalin Farkas and Farid Masrour, who develop versions of reductionism regarding phenomenally-necessitated intentionality (or "phenomenal intentionality"). I raise two objections to reductive theor…Read more
  •  53
    A Posteriori Physicalism and the Discrimination of Properties
    Acta Analytica 33 (1): 121-143. 2018.
    According to a posteriori physicalism, phenomenal properties are physical properties, despite the unbridgeable cognitive gap that holds between phenomenal concepts and physical concepts. Current debates about a posteriori physicalism turn on what I call “the perspicuity principle”: it is impossible for a suitably astute cognizer to possess concepts of a certain sort—viz., narrow concepts—without being able to tell whether the referents of those concepts are the same or different. The perspicuity…Read more
  •  46
    Timothy O’Connor and Philip Woodward defend a version of a compositional theory, according to which an incarnate deity has two natures, each of which is a distinct component of its being. They then extend this model to permit multiple incarnations. Finally, they consider an objection to this model based on the theological idea that Christ’s work is necessary for ushering in a united community of all divine-image-bearing creatures. In response, they speculate that no such all-encompassing communi…Read more
  •  41
    Introspection and Consciousness (review)
    Philosophical Psychology 28 (8): 1241-1245. 2015.