Thomas Metzinger

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Thomas Metzinger

Thomas Metzinger (born March 12, 1958) is a German philosopher. He currently holds the position of director of the theoretical philosophy group at the department of philosophy at Johannes Gutenberg-Universitšt Mainz.

He has been active since the early 1990s in the promotion of consciousness as a academic endevour. He has been particularly active in the organization of the Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness (ASSC), and currently sits on the board of directors of that organisation. In English he has published two edited works, Conscious Experience (1995), and Neural correlates of consciousness: empirical and conceptual issues (2000). The latter book arose out of the second ASSC meeting, for which he acted as local organizer.

In 2003 he published the monograph Being No-One. In this book he argues that no such things as selves exist in the world: nobody ever had or was a self. All that exists are phenomenal selves, as they appear in conscious experience. He argues that the phenomenal self, however, is not a thing but an ongoing process; it is the content of a "transparent self-model."

His interests include:

  • Philosophy of mind (esp. philosophical aspects of empirical theories in the neuro- and cognitive sciences, artificial intelligence, and related areas of research).
  • Ethics (esp. conceptual connections between applied ethics, the philosophy of mind and anthropology)

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