How minds and selves are made

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This paper aims at a conceptual clarification of some of the mechanisms that are involved when human selves are made in interactions with each other. Four such broad mechanisms are distinguished: socialisation, classification of self and others, the deference-emotion system, and the attribution and manipulation of the status of the responsible agent. The first two mechanisms are modelled with simple mechanical machines like clocks and signalling devices. Regarding the status of the responsible agent, the paper offers a proposal as to why we have conflicting intuitions about freedom of the will.


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