Sam Coleman

Sam Coleman

Dr. Sam Coleman is Reader in Philosophy at the University of Hertfordshire in England. He works on topics in the philosophy of mind, concerning its metaphysics and epistemology: i.e., what it is and how/what we know about it. His particular focus is the property of consciousness, which is puzzling from the point of view of science. 'Consciousness' in this area of philosophy refers to the fact that we feel at all, have sensations - like the visual sensations you're having in reading this page, the feeling of your body, sensations of warmth, cold, tickles or pain, tastes, smells and so on. Now, to manufacture a brain you don't need much more than a bag of coal (i.e. carbon) and a bottle of water. So, assuming the modern scientific perspective that says your mind just is (or is part of) your brain, whatever makes you conscious is somehow in the bag and bottle already! It's a fascinating and perplexing idea that mere dead matter, or chemicals, should contain the potential for sentience, and one of the big remaining scientific and philosophical challenges to understand how that can be so. It's a philosophical challenge because science, at least at the present moment, won't settle how consciousness is generated. Sam Coleman has written several articles in the philosophy of consciousness and is the editor of two volumes.

https://herts.academia.edu/SamColeman