Smell’s puzzling discrepancy: gifted discrimination, yet pitiful identification.

Mind and Language (forthcoming)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Humans are gifted at detecting and discriminating odors, yet we have difficulty identifying even the most prevalent everyday odors by name. This paper offers a new explanation for the puzzling discrepancy between our olfactory capacities for discrimination and identification by weaving together recent neuroscientific findings regarding the cortical connectivity of the olfactory system, the olfactory system’s proprietary semantic integration center, and recent philosophical research on the olfactory system’s compositional format of representation. The paper combines these areas of research to develop the comprehensive explanation that we cannot readily deploy conceptual resources in naming odorants, because of an incompatibility of compositional formats employed by our conceptual semantic resources and the olfactory system.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Revision history
Archival date: 2018-12-23
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

View all 44 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Added to PP index

Total views
101 ( #22,443 of 39,026 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
101 ( #3,734 of 39,026 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.