Philosophy of the Mind


At the end the students will understand the main problems of Philosophy of Mind and recognize the interconnection with some of the traditional issues of other areas of philosophy. Be acquainted with key ideas of philosophy of mind as well as classical arguments for its development and the technical terminology required to master it (Identification of Categorical Error, Qualia, Multiple Realization, etc.), as well as being able to articulate the arguments for and against central positions about the issues. Also, they will reinforce their abilities to analyze philosophical texts and raise questions relevant to their interpretation and to the development of philosophical reflection. In addition they will be capable to establish a philosophical dialogue with the contemporary issues as with recent data of neuroscience, pedagogical postures and ethical and political problems of our current times. Class B taught in English

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Dina Serra da Luz Mendonça


Weekly - Available soon

Total - 168

Teaching language



Not applicable.


Chalmers, David  (ed.) (2002) Philosophy of Mind: Classical and Contemporary Readings, Oxford: OUP


Dewey, John (1925) Chapter 7. Nature, Life and Body-Mind in Experience and Nature, ed. Jo Ann Boyston, 1988, Carbondale & Edwardsville: Southern Illinois University Press, pp. 191-225.


Gallagher, S. & Zahavi, D. (2012) The Phenomenological Mind, London & New York: Routledge


Gallagher S. (2013). A pattern theory of self. Frontiers in human neuroscience, 7, 443.


Mendonça, Dina (2013) Emotions about Emotions, Emotion Review, Vol. 5 No.4: 390˗396.


Migues, Sofia; Amen, Miguel; Pinto, Alberto (eds.) (2020) Filosofia da mente ˗ Antologia, Porto: Faculdade de Letras da Universidade do Porto


Ryle, Gilbert. (1949). Descartes Myth (Chapter 1 of The Concept of the Mind, pp. 11-24)

Teaching method

The teaching methodology includes classes with both a theoretical (60%) and a practical component (40%). There will also be the possibility of individual assistance and clarification by e˗mail and with the moodle. The theoretical component focuses on the transmission of the contents of the course syllabus, and is designed to include the critical participation of the students. The practical component aims at deepening the comprehension of the arguments orally or in writing, individually or in small groups for small discussions or debates in order to allow the use of the vocabulary and argumentative steps presented theoretically. 

Evaluation method

Final paper(40%), Participation in class and includes the tasks of the practical component of teaching (20%), Written test(40%)

Subject matter

This course will introduce students to the main problems of the Philosophy of Mind such as the nature and the functioning of the mind, the mind/body problem, and the problem of consciousness and the nature of the self, as well as the interpretation of other minds. The class will reflect on questions such as : Can mental processes be conceived beyond the boundaries of the human body? What is the role of intersubjectivity in the understanding of the Mind? Can computers think? How does the Philosophy of Emotions contribute to the development of Philosophy of Mind? The course will look at different theories regarding the nature of the mind and indicate the various possible answers to the questions as to understand some of the main argumentative moves accomplished within the Philosophy of Mind.


Programs where the course is taught: