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‘WIILTBA’ (bat! rat! rock!) questions – a partial listing

This month it’s (roughly) the 40th anniversary of the publication of Professor Emeritus Thomas Nagel‘s now-famous philosophical essay entitled : What Is It Like To Be a Bat? ( Philosophical Review, 83, no. 4 )

Since then, a considerable number of other academic writers, researchers and philosophers have paid tribute to professor Nagel’s bat paper (be it intentionally or not) by using similar titles for their compositions. Here are some examples of so-called ‘WIILTBA’ questions: (listed, roughly, according to the number of syllables).

What is it like to be a –

• rat?
• rock?
• bot?
• god?
• quark?
• cell?
• group?
• human?
• person?
• peahen?
• zombie?
• bachelor?
• dualist?
• Chinese room?
• synesthete?
• butterfly?
• geologist?
• generalist?
• school principal?
• musicologist?
• PhD student?
• phenomenologist?
• person who knows nothing?
• deflationary theory of meaning?
• solicitor in commerce and industry?
• special librarian at the center for creative leadership?

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