`` Incorrigibility As The Mark Of The Mental `` By Richard Rorty

1100 Words Dec 11th, 2015 5 Pages
How can we pinpoint mentality? In “Incorrigibility as the Mark of the Mental” Richard Rorty believes he has figured it out. Rorty, as his title would suggest, believes incorrigibility (when something can not be proven false) is the mark of the mental. Whether this is true or not, the more radical claim that stems from his argument is that mentality is merely a social construct that could, in theory, one day disappear all together. I don 't agree that either of these claims are necessarily true and I will offer examples later in this paper to push back on these claims. I also can 't help but feel generally upset by this second claim, for example if mentality is a social construct that may one day no longer exists, then why should we care about determining its criteria? Ultimately I do believe incorrigibility could be a mark of the mental, but I think Rorty twists his argument so that we must agree with him. I also believe his definition does not do a good job of separating conscious and unconscious beings, which I believe is an important distinction to make.

In order to examine Rorty’s theory we must first define the two types of mentality he describes. In the category he calls mental events he places thoughts and sensations, what he says make up the stream of consciousness. The second he calls mental features, which consist of beliefs, desires, purposes etc. These are the types of things one find when one asks “what 's going on in me now”(407). Rorty believes these are…

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