David Armstrong’s “The Nature of Mind”.
Based on your understanding of David Armstrong’s “The Nature of Mind”. (You do not
need to consult any other material besides Armstrong’s essay in order to complete this assignment.)
- Why does Armstrong believe that science furnishes the best clue we have to the nature of mind?
- A natural attempt at a scientific explanation of the nature of mind is provided by a theory Armstrong calls a
“very crude version” of behaviorism. Explain this Naive Behaviorism and the “obvious objection” Armstrong
believes it is open to.
- A better version of behaviorism is provided by Gilbert Ryle’s Dispositional Theory. First explain the general
notion of a disposition, and then state and explain Ryle’s Dispositional Behaviorism. Why does Armstrong think
Dispositional Behaviorism is “unsatisfactory as a theory of mind”.
- State and carefully explain the theory of the nature of mind that Armstrong ultimately recommends.
This one needs to be tightly argued. Get through 1 and 2 above rather quickly, but go slowly on 3 and 4.
Armstrong discusses an example about the brittleness of glass when explaining the general notion of a
disposition. You might want to do the same thing.