Egocentric presentism

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Egocentric presentism is a weak form of solipsism introduced by Caspar Hare in which other persons can be conscious, but their experiences are simply not present.[1][2]

Similarly, in related work, Hare argues for a theory of perspectival realism in which other perspectives do exist, but the present perspective has a defining intrinsic property.[3]

In one example that Hare uses to illustrate his theory (starting on page 354 of the official version of his paper[1]), you learn that you are one of two people, named A and B, who have just been in a train crash; and that A is about to have incredibly painful surgery. You cannot remember your name. Naturally, you hope to be B! The point of the example is that you know everything relevant that there is to know about the objective world; all that is missing is your position in it, that is, whose experiences are present, A's or B's. This example is easily handled by egocentric presentism because under this theory, the case where the present experiences are A's is fundamentally different from the case where the present experiences are B's. Hare points out that similar examples can be given to support theories like presentism in the philosophy of time.

Several other philosophers have written reviews of Hare's work on this topic.[4][5] Giovanni Merlo has given a detailed comparison to his own closely related subjectivist theory.[6]

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  1. ^ a b Hare, Caspar (July 2007). "Self-Bias, Time-Bias, and the Metaphysics of Self and Time" (PDF). The Journal of Philosophy. 104 (7): 350–373. 
  2. ^ Hare, Caspar (2009). On Myself, and Other, Less Important Subjects. Princeton University Press. ISBN 9780691135311. 
  3. ^ Hare, Caspar (September 2010). "Realism About Tense and Perspective" (PDF). Philosophy Compass. 5 (9): 760–769. doi:10.1111/j.1747-9991.2010.00325.x. 
  4. ^ McDaniel, Kris (January 2012). "On Myself, and Other, Less Important Subjects by Hare, Caspar - Review by: Kris McDaniel" (PDF). Ethics. 122 (2): 403–410. doi:10.1086/663578. 
  5. ^ Markosian, Ned. "Are You Special? A Review of Caspar Hare's On Myself, and Other, Less Important Subjects" (PDF). The Philosophical Review. 
  6. ^ Merlo, Giovanni (2016). "Subjectivism and the Mental". Dialectica. 70 (3): 311–342. doi:10.1111/1746-8361.12153. 

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