Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 24 May 2022

Abstract and Keywords

Functionalism at its core is the thesis that minds and mental kinds are to be understood in terms of the roles or functions that specific states and processes play within suitably organized systems. From a functionalist perspective, minds differ from non-minds not in any distinctive substance or fundamental substrate, but in their systemic organization and the roles played by their parts and sub-parts within it. A minded system is simply one that is organized in the right sort of way, though just which ways those are is a difficult and disputed matter. Functionalists classify states or processes largely, if not solely, in terms of the relevant roles or functions that they play in some such system.

Keywords: substrate, functionalism, systemic organization, behaviourism, mental states, brain processes

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.