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The Language of Thought

Critica 10 (28):140-143 (1978)

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  1. From Cybernetics to Second-Order Cybernetics: A Comparative Analysis of Their Central Ideas.T. Froese - 2010 - Constructivist Foundations 5 (2):75--85.
    Context: The enactive paradigm in the cognitive sciences is establishing itself as a strong and comprehensive alternative to the computationalist mainstream. However, its own particular historical roots have so far been largely ignored in the historical analyses of the cognitive sciences. Problem: In order to properly assess the enactive paradigm’s theoretical foundations in terms of their validity, novelty and potential future directions of development, it is essential for us to know more about the history of ideas that has led to (...)
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  • The enactive approach: a briefer statement, with some remarks on “radical enactivism”.Alva Noë - 2021 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 20 (5):957-970.
    The chief problem for the theory of mind is that of presence. In this paper I offer an explanation of this claim, and I indicate how my own “enactive” approach to mind has tried to address this problem. I also argue that other approaches, such as that undertaken by Hutto and Myin, have side-stepped the problem, instead of addressing it; their position opts for reductionism and eliminativism. This essay has two parts. The first is an exposition of the enactive approach, (...)
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  • A continuum of intentionality: linking the biogenic and anthropogenic approaches to cognition.Matthew Sims - 2021 - Biology and Philosophy 36 (6):1-31.
    Biogenic approaches investigate cognition from the standpoint of evolutionary function, asking what cognition does for a living system and then looking for common principles and exhibitions of cognitive strategies in a vast array of living systems—non-neural to neural. One worry which arises for the biogenic approach is that it is overly permissive in terms of what it construes as cognition. In this paper I critically engage with a recent instance of this way of criticising biogenic approaches in order to clarify (...)
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  • Brandom and the Second Person.Glenda Satne - 2017 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 25 (2):189-209.
    Brandom is one of the main advocators of the idea that meaning is instituted within basic linguistic practices through mutual exchanges. The aim of this paper is to show that such framework cannot do the required job if the dynamics of mutual exchanges is understood in interpretational terms. After arguing that the interpretational framework does not work, the paper presents an alternative second-personal conversational model capable of meeting the challenge.
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  • Conceptual Structure and the Emergence of the Language Faculty: Much Ado About Knotting.David J. Lobina - 2012 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 20 (4):519-539.
    Abstract One perspective in contemporary linguistic theory defends the idea that the language faculty may result from the combinations of diverse systems and principles. As a case study, I critique a recent proposal by Juan Uriagereka and colleagues according to which the evolutionary emergence of the language faculty can be identified through studying the computational structure of knots as present within the fossil record. I here argue that the ability to conceptualize and, thereby, create knots is not parasitic on the (...)
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  • Communication and Representation Understood as Sender–Receiver Coordination.Ronald J. Planer & Peter Godfrey-Smith - 2021 - Mind and Language 36 (5):750-770.
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  • Epistemic Modality, Mind, and Mathematics.Hasen Khudairi - 2021 - Dissertation, University of St Andrews
    This book concerns the foundations of epistemic modality. I examine the nature of epistemic modality, when the modal operator is interpreted as concerning both apriority and conceivability, as well as states of knowledge and belief. The book demonstrates how epistemic modality relates to the computational theory of mind; metaphysical modality; the types of mathematical modality; to the epistemic status of large cardinal axioms, undecidable propositions, and abstraction principles in the philosophy of mathematics; to the modal profile of rational intuition; and (...)
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  • Interpreting Degree Semantics.Alexis Wellwood - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 10.
    Contemporary research in compositional, truth-conditional semantics often takes judgments of the relative unacceptability of certain phrasal combinations as evidence for lexical semantics. For example, observing that completely full sounds perfectly natural whereas completely tall does not has been used to motivate a distinction whereby the lexical entry for full but not for tall specifies a scalar endpoint. So far, such inferences seem unobjectionable. In general, however, applying this methodology can lead to dubious conclusions. For example, observing that slightly bent is (...)
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  • Modal Cognitivism and Modal Expressivism.Hasen Khudairi - manuscript
    This paper aims to provide a mathematically tractable background against which to model both modal cognitivism and modal expressivism. I argue that epistemic modal algebras, endowed with a hyperintensional truthmaker semantics, comprise a materially adequate fragment of the language of thought. I demonstrate, then, how modal expressivism can be regimented by modal coalgebraic automata, to which the above epistemic modal algebras are dual. I examine, in particular, the virtues unique to the modal expressivist approach here proffered in the setting of (...)
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  • What’s Wrong with the Minimal Conception of Innateness in Cognitive Science?J. Brendan Ritchie - 2020 - Synthese 199 (Suppl 1):159-176.
    One of the classic debates in cognitive science is between nativism and empiricism about the development of psychological capacities. In principle, the debate is empirical. However, in practice nativist hypotheses have also been challenged for relying on an ill-defined, or even unscientific, notion of innateness as that which is “not learned”. Here this minimal conception of innateness is defended on four fronts. First, it is argued that the minimal conception is crucial to understanding the nativism-empiricism debate, when properly construed; Second, (...)
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  • Integrating Computation Into the Mechanistic Hierarchy in the Cognitive and Neural Sciences.Lotem Elber-Dorozko & Oron Shagrir - 2019 - Synthese 199 (Suppl 1):43-66.
    It is generally accepted that, in the cognitive and neural sciences, there are both computational and mechanistic explanations. We ask how computational explanations can integrate into the mechanistic hierarchy. The problem stems from the fact that implementation and mechanistic relations have different forms. The implementation relation, from the states of an abstract computational system to the physical, implementing states is a homomorphism mapping relation. The mechanistic relation, however, is that of part/whole; the explaining features in a mechanistic explanation are the (...)
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  • The Methodological Role of Mechanistic-Computational Models in Cognitive Science.Jens Harbecke - 2020 - Synthese 199 (Suppl 1):19-41.
    This paper discusses the relevance of models for cognitive science that integrate mechanistic and computational aspects. Its main hypothesis is that a model of a cognitive system is satisfactory and explanatory to the extent that it bridges phenomena at multiple mechanistic levels, such that at least several of these mechanistic levels are shown to implement computational processes. The relevant parts of the computation must be mapped onto distinguishable entities and activities of the mechanism. The ideal is contrasted with two other (...)
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  • Appraisal of Certain Methodologies in Cognitive Science Based on Lakatos’s Methodology of Scientific Research Programmes.Haydar Oğuz Erdin - 2020 - Synthese 199 (Suppl 1):89-112.
    Attempts to apply the mathematical tools of dynamical systems theory to cognition in a systematic way has been well under way since the early 90s and has been recognised as a “third contender” to computationalist and connectionist approaches :441–463, 1996). Nevertheless, it was also realised that such an application will not lead to a solid paradigm as straightforwardly as was initially hoped. In this paper I explicate a method for assessing such proposals by drawing upon Lakatos’s Criticism and the growth (...)
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  • Explanations in Cognitive Science: Unification Versus Pluralism.Marcin Miłkowski & Mateusz Hohol - 2020 - Synthese 199 (Suppl 1):1-17.
    The debate between the defenders of explanatory unification and explanatory pluralism has been ongoing from the beginning of cognitive science and is one of the central themes of its philosophy. Does cognitive science need a grand unifying theory? Should explanatory pluralism be embraced instead? Or maybe local integrative efforts are needed? What are the advantages of explanatory unification as compared to the benefits of explanatory pluralism? These questions, among others, are addressed in this Synthese’s special issue. In the introductory paper, (...)
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  • Make Up Your Mind: Octopus Cognition and Hybrid Explanations.Sidney Carls-Diamante - 2019 - Synthese 199 (Suppl 1):143-158.
    In order to argue that cognitive science should be more accepting of explanatory plurality, this paper presents the control of fetching movements in the octopus as an exemplar of a cognitive process that comprises distinct and non-redundant representation-using and non-representational elements. Fetching is a type of movement that representational analyses can normally account for completely—but not in the case of the octopus. Instead, a comprehensive account of octopus fetching requires the non-overlapping use of both representational and non-representational explanatory frameworks. What (...)
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  • Rapid Dissonant Grunting, or, but Why Does Music Sound the Way It Does?Beau R. Sievers & Thalia Wheatley - 2021 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 44.
    Each target article contributes important proto-musical building blocks that constrain music as-we-know-it. However, neither the credible signaling nor social bonding accounts elucidate the central mystery of why music sounds the way it does. Getting there requires working out how proto-musical building blocks combine and interact to create the complex, rich, and affecting music humans create and enjoy.
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  • The Dynamical Renaissance in Neuroscience.Luis H. Favela - 2020 - Synthese 199 (1-2):2103-2127.
    Although there is a substantial philosophical literature on dynamical systems theory in the cognitive sciences, the same is not the case for neuroscience. This paper attempts to motivate increased discussion via a set of overlapping issues. The first aim is primarily historical and is to demonstrate that dynamical systems theory is currently experiencing a renaissance in neuroscience. Although dynamical concepts and methods are becoming increasingly popular in contemporary neuroscience, the general approach should not be viewed as something entirely new to (...)
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  • Contents, Vehicles, and Complex Data Analysis in Neuroscience.Daniel C. Burnston - 2020 - Synthese 199 (1-2):1617-1639.
    The notion of representation in neuroscience has largely been predicated on localizing the components of computational processes that explain cognitive function. On this view, which I call “algorithmic homuncularism,” individual, spatially and temporally distinct parts of the brain serve as vehicles for distinct contents, and the causal relationships between them implement the transformations specified by an algorithm. This view has a widespread influence in philosophy and cognitive neuroscience, and has recently been ably articulated and defended by Shea. Still, I am (...)
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  • Is Mindreading a Gadget?Pierre Jacob & Thom Scott-Phillips - 2020 - Synthese 199 (1-2):1-27.
    Non-cognitive gadgets are fancy tools shaped to meet specific, local needs. Cecilia Heyes defines cognitive gadgets as dedicated psychological mechanisms created through social interactions and culturally, not genetically, inherited by humans. She has boldly proposed that many human cognitive mechanisms are gadgets. If true, these claims would have far-reaching implications for our scientific understanding of human social cognition. Here we assess Heyes’s cognitive gadget approach as it applies to mindreading. We do not think that the evidence supports Heyes’s thought-provoking thesis (...)
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  • The Oxford Handbook of Causal Reasoning.Michael R. Waldmann (ed.) - 2017 - Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
    Causal reasoning is one of our most central cognitive competencies, enabling us to adapt to our world. Causal knowledge allows us to predict future events, or diagnose the causes of observed facts. We plan actions and solve problems using knowledge about cause-effect relations. Without our ability to discover and empirically test causal theories, we would not have made progress in various empirical sciences. In the past decades, the important role of causal knowledge has been discovered in many areas of cognitive (...)
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  • Revisionary Physicalism.John Bickle - 1992 - Biology and Philosophy 7 (4):411-30.
    The focus of much recent debate between realists and eliminativists about the propositional attitudes obscures the fact that a spectrum of positions lies between these celebrated extremes. Appealing to an influential theoretical development in cognitive neurobiology, I argue that there is reason to expect such an “intermediate” outcome. The ontology that emerges is a revisionary physicalism. The argument draws lessons about revisionistic reductions from an important historical example, the reduction of equilibrium thermodynamics to statistical mechanics, and applies them to the (...)
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  • Perceptual Pluralism.Jake Quilty‐Dunn - 2020 - Noûs 54 (4):807-838.
    Perceptual systems respond to proximal stimuli by forming mental representations of distal stimuli. A central goal for the philosophy of perception is to characterize the representations delivered by perceptual systems. It may be that all perceptual representations are in some way proprietarily perceptual and differ from the representational format of thought (Dretske 1981; Carey 2009; Burge 2010; Block ms.). Or it may instead be that perception and cognition always trade in the same code (Prinz 2002; Pylyshyn 2003). This paper rejects (...)
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  • Mapping the Visual Icon.Sam Clarke - forthcoming - Philosophical Quarterly:1-22.
    It is often claimed that pre-attentive vision has an ‘iconic’ format. This is seen to explain pre-attentive vision’s characteristically high processing capacity and to make sense of an overlap in the mechanisms of early vision and mental imagery. But what does the iconicity of pre-attentive vision amount to? This paper considers two prominent ways of characterising pre-attentive visual icons and argues that neither is adequate: one approach renders the claim ‘pre-attentive vision is iconic’ empirically false while the other obscures its (...)
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  • Functionalism, Computationalism, & Mental States.Gualtiero Piccinini - 2004 - Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science 35 (4):811-833.
    Some philosophers have conflated functionalism and computationalism. I reconstruct how this came about and uncover two assumptions that made the conflation possible. They are the assumptions that (i) psychological functional analyses are computational descriptions and (ii) everything may be described as performing computations. I argue that, if we want to improve our understanding of both the metaphysics of mental states and the functional relations between them, we should reject these assumptions.
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  • Why Go for a Computation-Based Approach to Cognitive Representation.Dimitri Coelho Mollo - forthcoming - Synthese:1-21.
    The traditional view in (philosophy of) cognitive science is that computation in cognitive systems conceptually depends on representation: to compute is to manipulate representations. I argue that accepting the non-semantic teleomechanistic view of computation lays the ground for a promising alternative strategy, in which computation helps to explain and naturalise representation, rather than the other way around. I show that this computation-based approach to representation presents six decisive advantages over the traditional view. I claim that it can improve the two (...)
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  • Consciousness and Intentionality.Angela Mendelovici & David Bourget - 2020 - In Uriah Kriegel (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of the Philosophy of Consciousness. New York, USA: Oxford University Press. pp. 560-585.
    Philosophers traditionally recognize two main features of mental states: intentionality and phenomenal consciousness. To a first approximation, intentionality is the aboutness of mental states, and phenomenal consciousness is the felt, experiential, qualitative, or "what it's like" aspect of mental states. In the past few decades, these features have been widely assumed to be distinct and independent. But several philosophers have recently challenged this assumption, arguing that intentionality and consciousness are importantly related. This article overviews the key views on the relationship (...)
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  • La noción de naturaleza en Aristóteles en el marco de sus críticas a Platón.Silvana Gabriela Di Camillo - 2021 - Revista Latinoamericana de Filosofia 47 (2):311-330.
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  • Agential Free Choice.Melissa Fusco - 2021 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 50 (1):57-87.
    The Free Choice effect—whereby \\) seems to entail both \ and \—has traditionally been characterized as a phenomenon affecting the deontic modal ‘may’. This paper presents an extension of the semantic account of free choice defended by Fusco to the agentive modal ‘can’, the ‘can’ which, intuitively, describes an agent’s powers. On this account, free choice is a nonspecific de re phenomenon that—unlike typical cases—affects disjunction. I begin by sketching a model of inexact ability, which grounds a modal approach to (...)
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  • What Would It Mean for Natural Language to Be the Language of Thought?Gabe Dupre - 2021 - Linguistics and Philosophy 44 (4):773-812.
    Traditional arguments against the identification of the language of thought with natural language assume a picture of natural language which is largely inconsistent with that suggested by contemporary linguistic theory. This has led certain philosophers and linguists to suggest that this identification is not as implausible as it once seemed. In this paper, I discuss the prospects for such an identification in light of these developments in linguistic theory. I raise a new challenge against the identification thesis: the existence of (...)
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  • De Se Attitudes and Computation.Neil Hamilton Fairley - 2020 - Theoria 87 (1):207-229.
    There has been debate between those who maintain that indexical expressions are not essential and those who maintain that such indexicals cannot be dispensed with without an important loss of content. This version of the essentialist view holds that thoughts must also have indexical elements. Indexical thoughts appear to be in tension with the computational theory of mind. In this case we have the following inconsistent triad: De se thoughts are essential. De se thoughts are indexical, they have a character. (...)
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  • Overcoming the modal/amodal dichotomy of concepts.Christian Michel - 2020 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 20 (4):655-677.
    The debate about the nature of the representational format of concepts seems to have reached an impasse. The debate faces two fundamental problems. Firstly, amodalists and modalists claim that the same empirical evidence is compatible with their views. Secondly, there is no shared understanding of what a modal or amodal format amounts to. Both camps recognize that the two formats play essential roles in higher cognition, leading to an increasing number of hybrid proposals. In this paper, I argue that the (...)
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  • (Co-)Constructing a Theory of Mind: From Language or Through Language?Hande Ilgaz & Jedediah W. P. Allen - 2020 - Synthese 198 (9):8463-8484.
    There is a large body of empirical work that has investigated the relationship between parents’ child-directed speech and their children’s Theory of Mind development. That such a relationship should exist is well motivated from both Theory Theory and Socio-Cultural perspectives. Despite this general convergence, we argue that theoretical differences between the two perspectives suggests nuanced differences in the expected outcomes of the empirical work. Further, the different ontological commitments of the two approaches have guided the design, coding, and analysis of (...)
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  • Do Computers "Have Syntax, But No Semantics"?Jaroslav Peregrin - 2021 - Minds and Machines 31 (2):305-321.
    The heyday of discussions initiated by Searle's claim that computers have syntax, but no semantics has now past, yet philosophers and scientists still tend to frame their views on artificial intelligence in terms of syntax and semantics. In this paper I do not intend to take part in these discussions; my aim is more fundamental, viz. to ask what claims about syntax and semantics in this context can mean in the first place. And I argue that their sense is so (...)
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  • Why the Empirical Study of Non-philosophical Expertise Does not Undermine the Status of Philosophical Expertise.Theodore Bach - 2021 - Erkenntnis 86 (4):999-1023.
    In some domains experts perform better than novices, and in other domains experts do not generally perform better than novices. According to empirical studies of expert performance, this is because the former but not the latter domains make available to training practitioners a direct form of learning feedback. Several philosophers resource this empirical literature to cast doubt on the quality of philosophical expertise. They claim that philosophy is like the dubious domains in that it does not make available the good, (...)
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  • Introspection and Belief: Failures of Introspective Belief Formation.Chiara Caporuscio - forthcoming - Review of Philosophy and Psychology:1-20.
    Introspection has traditionally been defined as a privileged way of obtaining beliefs about one’s occurrent mental states, and the idea that it is psychologically and epistemically different from non-introspective belief formation processes has been widely defended. At the same time, philosophers and cognitive scientists alike have pointed out the unreliability of introspective reports in consciousness research. In this paper, I will argue that this dissonance in the literature can be explained by differentiating between infallible and informative introspective beliefs. I will (...)
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  • A Unified Account of General Learning Mechanisms and Theory‐of‐Mind Development.Theodore Bach - 2014 - Mind and Language 29 (3):351-381.
    Modularity theorists have challenged that there are, or could be, general learning mechanisms that explain theory-of-mind development. In response, supporters of the ‘scientific theory-theory’ account of theory-of-mind development have appealed to children's use of auxiliary hypotheses and probabilistic causal modeling. This article argues that these general learning mechanisms are not sufficient to meet the modularist's challenge. The article then explores an alternative domain-general learning mechanism by proposing that children grasp the concept belief through the progressive alignment of relational structure that (...)
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  • Classical and Connectionist Models: Levels of Description.Josep E. Corbí - 1993 - Synthese 95 (2):141 - 168.
    To begin, I introduce an analysis of interlevel relations that allows us to offer an initial characterization of the debate about the way classical and connectionist models relate. Subsequently, I examine a compatibility thesis and a conditional claim on this issue.With respect to the compatibility thesis, I argue that, even if classical and connectionist models are not necessarily incompatible, the emergence of the latter seems to undermine the best arguments for the Language of Thought Hypothesis, which is essential to the (...)
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  • A Pure Representationalist Account of Belief and Desire.Steve Pearce - 2016 - Dissertation, University of Western Ontario
    According to the traditional view, beliefs and desires are mental representations that play particular functional roles. A belief that P is state which represents P and plays the belief-role, while a desire that P is a state which represents that P and plays the desire-role. In this dissertation I argue that the traditional view has trouble accounting for (a) role that belief and desire play in the causal and rational explanation of behaviour and (b) our knowledge of our own conscious, (...)
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  • ¿Es la conciencia fenoménica una condición necesaria para la intencionalidad? Limitaciones del inseparatismo fenomenalista.Asier Arias Domínguez - 2019 - Agora 38 (1).
    One of the main dividing lines within the debate on the problem of consciousness comes between representationalist separatism and phenomenalist inseparatism. According to the former, representational mental states are possible in the absence of phenomenal consciousness, and furthermore, an adequate naturalistic theory of representation is necessary and sufficient for the explanation of phenomenal consciousness. According to the later, phenomenal consciousness is necessary for the existence and the explanation of any representational state and, indeed, of any mental state. Several arguments have (...)
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  • Cognitivism About Epistemic Modality.Hasen Khudairi - manuscript
    This paper aims to vindicate the thesis that cognitive computational properties are abstract objects implemented in physical systems. I avail of the equivalence relations countenanced in Homotopy Type Theory, in order to specify an abstraction principle for epistemic intensions. The homotopic abstraction principle for epistemic intensions provides an epistemic conduit into our knowledge of intensions as abstract objects. I examine, then, how intensional functions in Epistemic Modal Algebra are deployed as core models in the philosophy of mind, Bayesian perceptual psychology, (...)
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  • The Abstraction/Representation Account of Computation and Subjective Experience.Jochen Szangolies - 2020 - Minds and Machines 30 (2):259-299.
    I examine the abstraction/representation theory of computation put forward by Horsman et al., connecting it to the broader notion of modeling, and in particular, model-based explanation, as considered by Rosen. I argue that the ‘representational entities’ it depends on cannot themselves be computational, and that, in particular, their representational capacities cannot be realized by computational means, and must remain explanatorily opaque to them. I then propose that representation might be realized by subjective experience, through being the bearer of the structure (...)
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  • Cognitive Confinement: Theoretical Considerations on the Construction of a Cognitive Niche, and on How It Can Go Wrong.Konrad Werner - 2019 - Synthese 198 (7):6297-6328.
    This paper aims to elucidate a kind of ignorance that is more fundamental than a momentary lack of information, but also not a kind of ignorance that is built into the subject’s cognitive apparatus such that the subject can’t do anything about it. The paper sets forth the notion of cognitive confinement, which is a contingent, yet relatively stable state of being structurally or systematically unable to gain information from an environment, determined by patterns of interaction between the subject and (...)
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  • How Do Mental Processes Preserve Truth? Husserl’s Discovery of the Computational Theory of Mind.Jesse Daniel Lopes - 2020 - Husserl Studies 36 (1):25-45.
    Hubert Dreyfus once noted that it would be difficult to ascertain whether Edmund Husserl had a computational theory of mind. I provide evidence that he had one. Both Steven Pinker and Steven Horst think that the computational theory of mind must have two components: a representational-symbolic component and a causal component. Bearing this in mind, we proceed to a close-reading of the sections of “On the Logic of Signs” wherein Husserl presents, if I’m correct, his computational theory of mind embedded (...)
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  • Studies on Bhartṛhari and the Pratyabhijñā: Language, Knowledge and Consciousness.Marco Ferrante - 2020 - Journal of Indian Philosophy 48 (2):147-159.
    The article examines the impact the grammarian/philosopher Bhartṛhari had on the way the ‘School of Recognition’ elaborated the notion that knowledge and consciousness have a close relationship with language. The paper first lays out Bhartṛhari’s ideas, showing that his theses are rationally defensible and philosophically refined. More specifically, it claims that the grammarian is defending a view which is in many respects similar to ‘higher-order theories’ of consciousness advanced by some contemporary philosophers of mind. In the second part, the paper (...)
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  • Prospects of Enactivist Approaches to Intentionality and Cognition.Tobias Schlicht & Tobias Starzak - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):89-113.
    We discuss various implications of some radical anti-representationalist views of cognition and what they have to offer with regard to the naturalization of intentionality and the explanation of cognitive phenomena. Our focus is on recent arguments from proponents of enactive views of cognition to the effect that basic cognition is intentional but not representational and that cognition is co-extensive with life. We focus on lower rather than higher forms of cognition, namely the question regarding the intentional and representational nature of (...)
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  • Affective Representation and Affective Attitudes.Jonathan Mitchell - 2019 - Synthese (4):1-28.
    Many philosophers have understood the representational dimension of affective states along the model of sense-perceptual experiences, even claiming the relevant affective experiences are perceptual experiences. This paper argues affective experiences involve a kind of personal level affective representation disanalogous from the representational character of perceptual experiences. The positive thesis is that affective representation is a non-transparent, non-sensory form of evaluative representation, whereby a felt valenced attitude represents the object of the experience as minimally good or bad, and one experiences that (...)
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  • Realigning the Neural Paradigm for Death.Denis Larrivee & Michele Farisco - 2019 - Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 16 (2):259-277.
    Whole brain failure constitutes the diagnostic criterion for death determination in most clinical settings across the globe. Yet the conceptual foundation for its adoption was slow to emerge, has evoked extensive scientific debate since inception, underwent policy revision, and remains contentious in praxis even today. Complications result from the need to relate a unitary construal of the death event with an adequate account of organismal integration and that of the human organism in particular. Advances in the neuroscience of higher human (...)
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  • Triviality Arguments Reconsidered.Paul Schweizer - 2019 - Minds and Machines 29 (2):287-308.
    Opponents of the computational theory of mind have held that the theory is devoid of explanatory content, since whatever computational procedures are said to account for our cognitive attributes will also be realized by a host of other ‘deviant’ physical systems, such as buckets of water and possibly even stones. Such ‘triviality’ claims rely on a simple mapping account of physical implementation. Hence defenders of CTM traditionally attempt to block the trivialization critique by advocating additional constraints on the implementation relation. (...)
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  • Empiricism, Syntax, and Ontogeny.Gabe Dupre - 2021 - Philosophical Psychology 34 (7):1011-1046.
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  • Intensional Biases in Affordance Perception: An Explanatory Issue for Radical Enactivism.Silvano Zipoli Caiani - 2018 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 17):4183-4203.
    Radical Enactivism holds that the best explanation of basic forms of cognition is provided without involving information of any sort. According to this view, the ability to perceive visual affordances should be accounted for in terms of extensional covariations between variables spanning the agent’s body and the environment. Contrary to Radical Enactivism, I argue that the intensional properties of cognition cannot be ignored, and that the way in which an agent represents the world has consequences on the explanation of basic (...)
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