The Relationship Between Body and Brain

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About this sample


Words: 1681 |

Pages: 4|

9 min read

Published: Jan 25, 2024

Words: 1681|Pages: 4|9 min read

Published: Jan 25, 2024

Table of contents

  1. General Overview
  2. Restatement of the Author’s Argument
  3. Critical Analysis
  4. Defense of the Philosophical Position
  5. References

My impression of Dennett’s location throughout the story is that he is where he is told. When the experiment started, he was supposed to be in Houston, then he was sent to Tulsa for the radioactive device, and at last he returned to the laboratory in Houston. During all the time of the experiment, I believe that Dennett was where his body was, and not where his original brain was because he was still living the scenarios where he was without feeling that he was in the laboratory. Additionally, the only theory that in my opinion can relate to Dennett's experience is the Memory Theory. In this theory is said that we exist throughout time as long as we have memories from the past. In the experiment, Dennett clearly remembers what his favorite music was along with other events from the past. In this case, although his brain was outside of his body he is still himself if we relate to the Memory Theory. Lastly, Dennett's thought experiment deals directly with the problem of personal identity. In the beginning, he understands who he is and why he is taking decisions. Then, when his brain is taking out of his body, and it develops two sides with different personalities, he doesn't know who to be. The last part of the essay is about deciding which part of the brain he wants to be the responsible adult or the adventurous human. At the ending, he decides to keep both aspects of himself, but this decision took him much thinking because he was dealing with the problem of personal identity.

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General Overview

Dennett’s condition brings the understanding of the philosophy behind human’s brain and body. The philosophical topic to be analyzed is the relationship between an individual’s body and brain. The body of a person, though controlled by the brain, can exist without the existence of the brain. The experiment done to Dennett proves this outcome. Also, an individual’s common sense views that personally identify of a person is tied intimately to the brain. To explain the statement, thoughts of a person occur in the brain. Any interruption to the brain would lead to the disruption in the reflections. Through the analysis of memory theory and personal identity, it will be possible to understand the relationship between body, brain, and thoughts of a person, as explained by the author.

Restatement of the Author’s Argument

According to the author, an individual can be where the body is but not where the brain is. The whole experiment is proved by Dennett’s case when his brain was removed. The fictional account of Dennett as explained by narrated by the author involves series of body and brain surgeries. This series aims at illustrating the theory of personal identity. In describing the whole scenario, Dennett’s body had to be separated with the brain, because of the secret government mission which he was to fulfill. Upon the separation of the brain and the body, his brain was replaced to an artificial brain, connected to his primitive brain via the radio waves. From the author’s illustration, Dennett’s body, though not connected directly to the brain, is associated with the brain via the artificial brain. It receives all the signals from the brain for action and sends stimuli to the back of the brain as well. Through Dennett’s hypothesis, he claims that he is not where his body is, and this is the center of the author’s argument. Human personality is preserved in the brain even if the body is separated from the brain, and even when a different body has connected to the brain again, the individual’s personality is retained. As the author argues, Dennett’s personal identity remains and was not interrupted when his brain was connected to a different body after the government mission. The theory applies to every individual in that human brain controls the thoughts and personality of an individual, even if the body is changed, just like in the case of Dennett.

Critical Analysis

From the author’s posting and argument, it is true that personal identity is determined by the brain and not the body. Therefore, there is no relationship between the body and the brain whatsoever. However, to counteract the argument, the action of the body is determined by the brain. Though it clear that personal identity of an individual is all determined by the brain, will the behavior of the individual affect the body in any way? Biologically, the stimulus impulse from the body is transmitted to the brain, and concurrently the response pulses are again sent to the body for action to be taken by the same body (Perry et al. 125). Taking an example of where the individual’s personality leads to being talkative and fast moving when it comes to action, there will be a possible measure in the case that the brain sends impulses to the body.

Through Dennett’s experimental case, upon getting an accident, his whole body ceases to function with the artificial brain. Therefore, the process led to the shifting of the point-of-view from the location of his body at this time of the accident to the vat where the brain sits. It all means that there is a close relationship between the body’s action and the brain’s activity. The relationship between the body and the brain is as well depicted when an individual senses that he has been given a new body, as in the case of Dennett.

From the memory theory, once a person is the same self and rational being, he retains the same personal identity. However, this can be refuted by the fact that self is formed of the body and the results of a person’s self-are reflected in the body actions. With any small change in an individual’s self, there will be a concurrent shift in the personality or the personal identity. Once there is a change in the personal identity, there will be an absolute change in the body actions. Since the brain is capable of realizing the individual’s body, one’s identity can only be fully expressed in the original body but not with a counterfeit or a different body. According to Perry et al. (2015, 130), the individual’s personal identity can extend as far as one’s consciousness, and hence the effect might only be seen in the original body but not the counterfeit (Perry et al. 130). From a psychological view, the consciousness of an individual has an equation with the memory and hence the personality also depends on the knowledge. Most of the times, a person is defined to be conscious when his body is with the brain at the same place. The definition remains to be literal as well as mental. The functions of the body are properly managed by the brain and hence there is an association in their functions and activities. Mentally, the thoughts of an individual should be determined by the existence of the brain and the body in the same location.

From the reality of an individual’s personality, various values and virtues come with it, and they are all reflected in the body activities. For instance, a personal who is mean, unkind and unhappy, the actions and words would depict the same characters (Hood, 15). Therefore, someone is not only his body, his emotions, his personality but also his brain, because all the thoughts and decisions are determined by the brain. However, the body serves as a reflection and a practical part of human that does according to the brain’s response to the stimuli.

Defense of the Philosophical Position

Everyone tends to associate the body with the brain, but by just removing the body and connecting the brain to another body would dispute this statement. However, according to Hood (2012, 21), the brain is simply being determined with the stimuli from the body. As humans are thinking of shedding off their physical bodies for some remote-controlled artificial bodies, there is an effect in the brain. Philosophically, the questions tend to arise regarding the immateriality of the soul (Hood, 21).

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In the same view and argument, each person’s identity is tied to some particular perspective of perceiving thoughts and ideas. The perception in a real sense has to have a close and immediate intersection with the body. As the brain tends to think and reveal the real person’s identity, it remains a fact to have the accurate perception of ideas in the behavior of the individual. Though the behavior might as well have an interaction with the brain, it is much related to the body response as well. Therefore, any response of the body will be determined by an individual’s perception of any thought as pictured by the brain. The body seems to be the center of relations defining one’s view of the world. As the brain forms the subject of the perceptions’ content, the body determines the viewpoint of which a person tends to perceive the world (Perry et al. 130). It will be at rear instances that the perspectives and identity switch back to the brain at times that the body ceases to be the center of relations that ties an individual to the world. Just the same way that the body brings a close relationship between a person and the world, it is the same way that the brain bears a close relation between one’s perception and the world. Therefore, this close interrelation cannot be refuted, but integrated so that the body and the brain work for the wellbeing of an individual.


  1. Hood, Bruce. The self-illusion: How the social brain creates identity. Oxford University Press, 2012.
  2. Perry, John, Michael Bratman, and John Martin Fischer. "Introduction to philosophy: Classical and contemporary readings." (2015).
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Alex Wood

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The Relationship Between Body and Brain. (2024, January 24). GradesFixer. Retrieved April 13, 2024, from
“The Relationship Between Body and Brain.” GradesFixer, 24 Jan. 2024,
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