Slezak, P. P. (2018). Is There Progress in Philosophy? The Case for Taking History Seriously. Philosophy93(4), 529-555. doi:10.1017/S0031819118000232 https://www.academia.edu/42945303/Is_There_Progress_in_Philosophy_The_Case_for_Taking_History_Seriously_1
Abstract:
In response to widespread doubts among professional philosophers (Russell, Horwich, Dietrich, McGinn, Chalmers), Stoljar argues for a ‘reasonable optimism’ about progress in philosophy. He defends the large and surprising claim that ‘there is progress on all or reasonably many of the big questions’. However, Stoljar’s caveats and admitted avoidance of historical evidence permits overlooking persistent controversies in philosophy of mind and cognitive science that are essentially unchanged since the 17th Century. Stoljar suggests that his claims are commonplace in philosophy departments and, indeed, the evidence I adduce constitutes an indictment of the widely shared view among professional analytic philosophers.
[Citing Place (1956)]  
Citing Place (1956) in context (citations start with an asterisk *):
Section 10. Qualia and the Heat Death of the Universe
* As Stoljar recognizes, the Knowledge Argument is a defence of qualia. However, this issue gets only a passing mention in his book though it is the central, persistent source of the mind-body problem – the perennial puzzle about subjective, qualitative phenomenal states, the ‘raw feels’ of experience seen in the immense literature on zombies, inverted spectra and other esoterica. Levine’s ‘explanatory gap’ Fn 73: J. Levine, ‘Materialism and qualia: the explanatory gap’, Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 64 (1983): 354–61. merely re-invents Wittgenstein’s ‘unbridgeable gulf’. Indeed, it is arguably the fundamenal puzzle that has plagued the mind-body problem throughout its history. Of course, this puzzlement is the reason for Nagel’s remark, ‘Consciousness is what makes the mind-body problem really intractable.’ Fn 74: T. Nagel, ‘What is it like to be a bat?’, Philosophical Review 83 (1974): 435–450. Searle, Fn 75: J. Searle, The Mystery of Consciousness (London: Granta Books, 1997), 99. like Levine, echoes Sherrington in 1942 Fn 76: C. Sherrington, Man On His Nature (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1942). almost verbatim suggesting that the physical causes of pain do not explain the subjective feeling. Significantly, Dennett Fn 77: D.C. Dennett, ‘Illusionism as the Obvious Default Theory of Consciousness’, Journal of Consciousness Studies 23 (2016): 65–72, 70. reminds us that his own critical ‘illusionism’ about consciousness was anticipated by Place’s classic manifesto for modern materialism Fn 78: U.T. Place, ‘Is Consciousness a Brain Process?’, British Journal of Psychology 47 (1956): 44–50. which cited Sherrington’s ‘phenomenological fallacy’. The modern puzzle is captured evocatively by McGinn’s question ‘How can technicolour phenomenology arise from soggy grey matter?’ Fn 79: C. McGinn, ‘Can We Solve the Mind-Body Problem?’, Mind 98 (1989): 349–66. In the 17th Century, Robert Boyle asked in the same terms how can ‘this seemingly rude lump of soft matter’ that appears like so much custard’ perform such ‘strange things’. Fn 80: Quoted in J. Sutton, Philosophy and Memory Traces: Descartes to Connectionism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), 119. Lycan conveys the point dramatically in his wry observation ‘Someday there will be no more articles written about the “Knowledge Argument”’ for qualia. ‘That is beyond dispute. What is less certain is, how much sooner that day will come than the heat death of the universe.’ Fn 81: W.G. Lycan, ‘Perspectival Representation and the Knowledge Argument’ in Q. Smith and A. Jokic (eds) Consciousness: New Philosophical Essays, (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003), 384.