Patricia Churchland is UC President’s Professor of Philosophy Emerita at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). She is also an adjunct professor at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. Churchland has made important contributions to the philosophy of mind and philosophical topics in neurobiology. She received her undergraduate education from the University of British Columbia, Canada. She received a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship to study at the University of Pittsburgh, where she earned her master’s degree. She received a B.Phil. at the University of Oxford in 1969.
Patricia Churchland’s research has been an interdisciplinary effort in both philosophy proper and the sciences, particularly neuroscience and neurobiology. She is known for a philosophical position allied to scientific research known as “eliminative materialism,” where “folk” concepts like consciousness, free will, and other aspects of what we think of as the mind will eventually be eliminate in favor of purely scientific accounts of the brain. Thus she views philosophy itself as a discipline that is changing (or should change)—a kind of “proto science” at its best, where questions are raised in terms of our knowledge of the brain rather than historical conundrums.
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Major published works by Patricia Churchland:
University in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canadaview profile
Collegiate research university in Oxford, Englandview profile
Public university in La Jolla, California, United Statesview profile
Public research university in British Columbia, Canadaview profile
State-related research university located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United Statesview profile
University in Moscow, Russiaview profile