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"The Concept of Mind is a 1949 book by philosopher Gilbert Ryle, in which Ryle argues that "mind" is "a philosophical illusion hailing chiefly from René Descartes and sustained by logical errors and 'category mistakes' which have become habitual." The work has been cited as having "put the final nail in the coffin of Cartesian dualism" and has been seen as a founding document in the philosophy of mind, which received professional recognition as a distinct and important branch of philosophy only after 1950. In the chapter "Descartes' Myth," Ryle introduces the term "the dogma of the Ghost in the machine" to describe the philosophical concept of the mind as an entity separate from the body. He argues "I hope to prove that it is entirely false, and false not in detail but in principle. It is not merely an assemblage of particular mistakes. It is one big mistake and a mistake of a special kind. It is, namely, a category mistake." Ryle rejects Descartes' theory of the relation between mind and body, on the grounds that it approaches the investigation of mental processes as if they could be isolated from physical processes. In order to demonstrate how this theory may be misleading, he explains that knowing how to perform an act skilfully may not only be a matter of being able to reason practically but may also be a matter of being able to put practical reasoning into action. Practical actions may not necessarily be produced by highly theoretical reasoning or by complex sequences of intellectual operations..."
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Penguin paperback 1966.
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