It has been argued that delusions of thought-insertion challenge conventional assumptions about first-person authority and, in particular, the immunity principle (IP), according to which first-person, present-tense reports about psychological states are immune to errors of identification. This analysis elucidates different ways that the IP can be formulated and examines what thought-insertion delusions tell us about the sustainability of each. By way of this analysis, I show why it is crucial that any formulation of the IP be limited to present-tense, self-referential judgments (in particular, judgments ascribing some predicate to the essential indexical 'I') that are based on a certain kind of personal perspective. Based on this understanding, I argue that that the phenomenon of thought-insertion poses no real problem for the IP. The craving for more philosophical generality with respect to this principle has led various theorists to oversimplify the principle and to think that it must be jettisoned in light of deviant psychological phenomena such as thought-insertion delusions.


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 151-159
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.