Date of Award

Fall 12-17-2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (BA)


Philosophy and Religious Studies


College of Humanities and Fine Arts

First Advisor

Dennis Earl


In this paper, I consider the question of personal identity, namely: in virtue of what is one person the same person at two different points in time? I first raise objections to theories which argue it is in virtue of physical continuity or continuity soul, then argue that an account of psychological continuity is most successful. One might object to psychological continuity on the grounds of reduplication and fusion problems. I argue that strict numerical identity is a bar set too high and rather that survival (construed as the continuation of a first-person perspective) is what matters for personal identity. I then propose an account of psychological continuity which depends upon survival and demonstrate how it can overcome objections previously raised to views of psychological continuity. Finally, I defend this conception of survival against objections (such as gaps in one’s perspective) and conclude that psychological continuity based on survival best accounts for personal identity.

Included in

Metaphysics Commons