The Explanatory Gap

Joseph Levine

in The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Mind

Published in print January 2009 | ISBN: 9780199262618
Published online September 2009 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Philosophy

The Explanatory Gap


This article outlines the strategy for reconciling materialism and the explanatory gap. As one might imagine, there are a number of complex issues that must be sorted out concerning the alleged special nature of phenomenal concepts, and their alleged incommensurability with non-phenomenal concepts, before one can determine whether or not the strategy works in the end. In particular, it is unclear whether materialists can deliver an explanation of the special cognitive access afforded by phenomenal concepts which is itself consistent with its precepts.

Keywords: materialism; explanatory gap; phenomenal concepts; non-phenomenal concepts; cognitive access

Article.  5307 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy ; Philosophy of Mind

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