Date of Award


Document Type

Union College Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



First Advisor

Raymond Martin




able, response, selves, accepting, believed


My thesis is an investigation of the consequences of accepting metaphysical reductionism about selves. I analyze what it would mean to us if we wholeheartedly believed we had no selves, but rather believed we were mere collections of basic impersonal elements interrelated in various ways. Would we be able to maintain special future oriented concern towards our continuers (ourselves in the future)? Would we be able to justify any sense of meaning in our lives? Could we care about others in a personal way? Would we be able to get excited about things? These are the sorts of questions I raise and answer in my paper. Ultimately, I argue that accepting Reductionism will lead to a radically different response to life, and that this response will be practically superior to the response of the view that selves exist. I predict the Reductionist will enjoy greater happiness and greater virtue due to her freedom from egoistic concern.