Top positive review
6 people found this helpful
An interesting and informative book
on 21 October 2006
As he explains at the outset, Searle does not intend this book to provide a neutral introduction to the philosophy of mind. He claims that in this area "all of the most famous and influential theories are false", and so he concentrates on presenting his own views on the topics of consciousness, intentionality, mental causation, free will, 'the unconscious', perception and 'the self'.
He devotes about half the book to a critique of both materialism and dualism and to advocating 'biological naturalism' as an alternative explanation of consciousness. It seems to me this approach -- which he has also outlined in earlier books -- offers a major step toward the solution of the traditional body/mind problem. Other chapters that I found particularly helpful were the ones discussing perception and mental causation.
Searle writes very clearly, and frequently summarises and recapitulates his main arguments. I like this style of presentation, but I imagine some readers might find it rather repetitive. I would think the ideas put forward will be of interest to most readers who enjoy pondering philosophical issues yet are not too philosophically sophisticated to need an introductory text.