Realization and Multiple Realization, Chicken and Egg
Article first published online: 8 MAY 2013
© 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
European Journal of Philosophy
How to Cite
Polger, T. W. (2013), Realization and Multiple Realization, Chicken and Egg. European Journal of Philosophy. doi: 10.1111/ejop.12017
- Article first published online: 8 MAY 2013
A common view is that the truth of multiple realization—e.g., about psychological states—entails the truth of functionalism. This is supposed to follow because what is multiply realized is eo ipso realized. I argue that view is mistaken by demonstrating how it misrepresents arguments from multiple realization. In particular, it undermines the empirical component of the arguments, and renders the multiplicity of the realization irrelevant. I suggest an alternative reading of multiple realizability arguments, particularly in philosophy of psychology. And I explain the proper way to understand the relation between realization and multiple realization.