The subjugation and emancipation of the synthetic mind
The following Honors Thesis is a culmination of what I have come to believe throughout my short time in the philosophy classrooms regarding our species’ ability cognize and the evolutionary ethics of artificial intelligence. I will argue my opinion as to what human minds really are or shall be considered as. From there, the implications of what we view minds as will be adjudged to have significant control over our behavior as an intelligent life form, and an evolutionary argument will be made that our species will evolve to have a certain point of view on this matter because otherwise its very survival will come into question. We will begin our discussion by taking note of the justification and motivation for this project. Philosophy, we believe, has a very large stake in the scientific question of what the mind is. Then, we will outline the terminology and what it means for something to be reductive or antireductive in terms of the mind. In the chapter after that, we will make precise which theories of the mind are workable within the antireductive/reductive framework—which will be omitted and which will be favored. Then, in the following chapter, we will argue that the reductive theory of the mind fits with the logical of scientific understanding since it is provable/unfalsifiable whereas the antireductive theory of the mind is not. The next chapter will look to substantiate that claim through a positive view of neuroscience and computer science. In the last full chapter, we will argue that the theory of the mind that we take has significant implications politically and morally. We will argue that these implications will impart an evolutionary pressure on humans to adopt the reductive theory of the mind. For, if we do not, our very existence may come in to question upon the birth of truly artificial intelligence.