Consider Locke’s notion that a single fixed point is required for a person to be themselves – to have a claim to identity. This single fixed point is not a material substance (the body) or an immaterial substance (the soul), but rather it is a singularity of conscious experience. This singularity is what persists through time and is constituted by a person’s past action and experience, which they themselves do not always directly access.
Using citations from the assigned reading, explain briefly how Schechtman modifies Locke’s theory of personal identity to conform to a person’s intelligibility of those memories. Give examples about how this idea of personhood allows us to reasonably form plans for future action. Finally, give reasons why we should or should not accept Schechtman’s modified account of personal identity.
Required Reading: Marya Schechtman, “Personal Identity and the Past”
Recommended Reading: “Personal Identity”, Introduction and Section 1 – <http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/identity-personal/#AccOurIdeThrTim>