Aspects of Self: A Workshop

Date and time: 5月14日 14th May 14:00-18:00
Venue: 京都大学文学部本館1階会議室 Meeting Room on the 1st floor of Main Building of Graduate School of Letters, Kyoto University (No.8 of


14:00-15:00 San Tun (Dagon University) “The Concept of Self in Myanmar Philosophical Thought”
15:00-16:00 小松原織香(同志社大学)「環境問題と紛争解決 –〈ディープ・エコロジー〉から〈修復的正義〉へ」
16:00-17:00 Yumiko Inukai(University of Massachusetts Boston) “The Minimal Self in Early Modern Philosophers”
17:00-18:00 Takashi Yagisawa(California State University, Northridge) “A Deflationary Conception of the Self”


San Tun, “The Concept of Self in Myanmar Philosophical Thought”
This paper is an attempt to show why the concept of self in Myanmar Philosophical thought is not ontological self, but simply the ethical self. It is because that the concept of self cannot be observed and found out in the ontological phenomena of mind and body but it can be regarded and used as an ethical phenomenon of activities of mind and body. In the daily life of Myanmar people, the concept of self is called “atta” which comes from pāli word. In Myanmar saying, if a person who has only self-centeredness for his or her self-interest and he or she is too much selfish, and then he or she is called a man of “big atta” (atta kye thu) or a man of searching for self-interest (ko kyo sha thu) which means a bad man. If a person who has not only self love and self respect but also love for other and respect for other, then he or she is called a man of “not-big atta” (atta ma kye thu) or a man of “not searching for self-interest” (ko kyo ma sha thu) which means a good man. Philosophy is the replacement of category-habits by category-disciplines. Category-disciplines are systematic reflective thoughts on life and it provides man with an access to the norms and values for a way of living. The concept of self is called “atta” is used as category-habits in Myanmar daily life. In this paper, it will be replaced by category-disciplines with descriptive and evaluative methods and systematic reflective thoughts on western and eastern theories of self as well as Buddhist philosophy, one of the Myanmar cultural phenomena.

小松原織香「環境問題と紛争解決 –〈ディープ・エコロジー〉から〈修復的正義〉へ」

Yumiko Inukai, “The Minimal Self in Early Modern Philosophers”
In recent years, some philosophers have begun to pay more attention to the relationship between phenomenal consciousness and subjectivity in their investigation of the self again. Instead of settling the question regarding the existence and the nature of the self first, they attempt to illuminate the structure of experience in which a sense of the self as a subject of experience arises in the first place, as phenomenologists would do. This approach has proven to be quite fruitful: it has yielded a basic, yet critical, and popular notion of the self – “the minimal self.” It is a self at the most fundamental level, which is intimately connected with the character of first-personal perspective of conscious states. I will show that some Early Modern philosophers like Descartes, Berkeley, and Locke already recognized the aspect of subjectivity in our conscious experience and used it to develop their accounts of the self. Interestingly, however, Hume rejected it, which may have led him to the “labyrinth.”

Takashi Yagisawa, “A Deflationary Conception of the Self”
It is commonly thought that the self poses deep sui generis problems in philosophy, and many philosophers speak of the “problems of the self.” But it is a mistake to regard those deep sui generis problems as dealing in the notion SELF. They instead deal in a different notion, which is almost universally conflated and confused with the notion SELF. This other notion is the first-person singular notion, ME. As far as the notion SELF is concerned, although it is associated with interrelated philosophical issues, they are
instances of wider issues in philosophy of logic, philosophy of language, and metaphysics, and are subject to discussion quite independently of discussion of issues concerning the
notion ME.


Organizers: Yasuo Deguchi, Takuro Onishi, Shinya Aoyama

Contact: Takuro Onishi (RA)