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For other uses, see Person (disambiguation). Person_sentence_0

A person (plural people or persons) is a being that has certain capacities or attributes such as reason, morality, consciousness or self-consciousness, and being a part of a culturally established form of social relations such as kinship, ownership of property, or legal responsibility. Person_sentence_1

The defining features of personhood and consequently what makes a person count as a person differ widely among cultures and contexts. Person_sentence_2

In addition to the question of personhood, of what makes a being count as a person to begin with, there are further questions about personal identity and self: both about what makes any particular person that particular person instead of another, and about what makes a person at one time the same person as they were or will be at another time despite any intervening changes. Person_sentence_3

The plural form "people", is often used to refer to an entire nation or ethnic group (as in "a people"). Person_sentence_4

The plural form "persons" is often used in philosophical and legal writing. Person_sentence_5

Personhood Person_section_0

Main article: Personhood Person_sentence_6

Personhood is the status of being a person. Person_sentence_7

Defining personhood is a controversial topic in philosophy and law, and is closely tied to legal and political concepts of citizenship, equality, and liberty. Person_sentence_8

According to common worldwide general legal practice, only a natural person or legal personality has rights, protections, privileges, responsibilities, and legal liability. Person_sentence_9

Personhood continues to be a topic of international debate, and has been questioned during the abolition of slavery and the fight for women's rights, in debates about abortion, fetal rights, and in animal rights advocacy. Person_sentence_10

Various debates have focused on questions about the personhood of different classes of entities. Person_sentence_11

Historically, the personhood of women, and slaves has been a catalyst of social upheaval. Person_sentence_12

In most societies today, postnatal humans are defined as persons. Person_sentence_13

Likewise, certain legal entities such as corporations, sovereign states and other polities, or estates in probate are legally defined as persons. Person_sentence_14

However, some people believe that other groups should be included, depending on the theory, the category of "person" may be taken to include or not pre-natal humans or such non-human entities as animals, artificial intelligences, or extraterrestrial life. Person_sentence_15

Personal identity Person_section_1

Main article: Personal identity Person_sentence_16

Personal identity is the unique identity of persons through time. Person_sentence_17

That is to say, the necessary and sufficient conditions under which a person at one time and a person at another time can be said to be the same person, persisting through time. Person_sentence_18

In the modern philosophy of mind, this concept of personal identity is sometimes referred to as the problem of personal identity. Person_sentence_19

The problem is grounded in the question of what features or traits characterize a given person at one time. Person_sentence_20

Identity is an issue for both continental philosophy and analytic philosophy. Person_sentence_21

A key question in continental philosophy is in what sense we can maintain the modern conception of identity, while realizing many of our prior assumptions about the world are incorrect. Person_sentence_22

Proposed solutions to the problem of personal identity include continuity of the physical body, continuity of an immaterial mind or soul, continuity of consciousness or memory, the bundle theory of self, continuity of personality after the death of the physical body, and proposals that there are actually no persons or selves who persist over time at all. Person_sentence_23

Development of the concept Person_section_2

In ancient Rome, the word persona (Latin) or prosopon (πρόσωπον; Greek) originally referred to the masks worn by actors on stage. Person_sentence_24

The various masks represented the various "personae" in the stage play. Person_sentence_25

The concept of person was further developed during the Trinitarian and Christological debates of the 4th and 5th centuries in contrast to the word nature. Person_sentence_26

During the theological debates, some philosophical tools (concepts) were needed so that the debates could be held on common basis to all theological schools. Person_sentence_27

The purpose of the debate was to establish the relation, similarities and differences between the Ancient Greek: Λóγος, romanized: Lógos/Verbum and God. Person_sentence_28

The philosophical concept of person arose, taking the word "prosopon" (Ancient Greek: πρόσωπον, romanized: prósōpon) from the Greek theatre. Person_sentence_29

Therefore, Christus (the Ancient Greek: Λóγος, romanized: Lógos/Verbum) and God were defined as different "persons". Person_sentence_30

This concept was applied later to the Holy Ghost, the angels and to all human beings. Person_sentence_31

Since then, a number of important changes to the word's meaning and use have taken place, and attempts have been made to redefine the word with varying degrees of adoption and influence. Person_sentence_32

According to Noller, at least six approaches can be distinguished: "(1) The ontological definition of the person as “an individual substance of a rational nature” (Boethius). Person_sentence_33

(2) The self-consciousness-based definition of the person as a being that “can conceive itself as itself” (John Locke). Person_sentence_34

(3) The moral-philosophical definition of the person as “an end in itself” (Immanuel Kant). Person_sentence_35

In current analytical debate, the focus has shifted to the relationship between bodily organism and person. Person_sentence_36

[4.] Person_sentence_37

The theory of animalism (Eric T. Olson) states that persons are essentially animals and that mental or psychological attributes play no role in their identity. Person_sentence_38

[5.] Person_sentence_39

Constitution theory (Lynne Baker), on the other hand, attempts to define the person as a natural and at the same time self-conscious being: the bodily organism constitutes the person without being identical to it. Person_sentence_40

Rather, it forms with it a “unity without identity”. Person_sentence_41

[6.] Person_sentence_42

[... Another idea] for conceiving the natural-rational unity of the person has emerged recently in the concept of the “person life” (Marya Schechtman)." Person_sentence_43

See also Person_section_3

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