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PERSONAL IDENTITY AND SELF-OWNERSHIP

  • Edward Feser (a1)
  • DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0265052505052052
  • Published online: 01 July 2005
Abstract

Defenders of the thesis of self-ownership generally focus on the “ownership” part of the thesis and say little about the metaphysics of the self that is said to be self-owned. But not all accounts of the self are consistent with robust self-ownership. Philosophical accounts of the self are typically enshrined in theories of personal identity, and the paper examines various such theories with a view to determining their suitability for grounding a metaphysics of the self consistent with self-ownership. As it happens, only one such theory is suitable: the hylemorphic theory of Aristotle and Aquinas. To adopt such a theory, however, is to see that self-ownership may in some respects have implications different from those many of its defenders take it to have.

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For comments on earlier versions of this essay, I thank Christopher Kaczor, Ellen Frankel Paul, the participants at an Institute for Humane Studies current research workshop in January 2004, and the other contributors to this volume.
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Social Philosophy and Policy
  • ISSN: 0265-0525
  • EISSN: 1471-6437
  • URL: /core/journals/social-philosophy-and-policy
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