Delusional realities



Publication Details

Gallagher, S. (2009). Delusional realities. In M. R. Broome and L. Bortolotti (Eds.), Psychiatry as Cognitive Neuroscience: Philosophical Perspectives (pp. 245-266). United Kingdom: Oxford University Press.

Additional Publication Information

ISBN: 9780199238033


Recent accounts of delusions involve either top-down or bottom-up, or some hybrid version of theories that rely on internalist, brain-based, or purely belief-based approaches. My intent in this chapter is to explore an alternative explanatory framework, to raise some questions that lead in a different, externalist, and existentialist direction, and to provide a broader account that treats other factorsbody, affect, social, and environmental factors - as important in the constitution of delusional realities. This account makes use of the concept of multiple realities, deriving from William James and developed by Alfred Schutz. The account does not provide a causal explanation of delusions, but aims to work out a more adequate characterization of delusions that would provide a framework for any such explanation.

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