Results for 'Brenda J. Wilson'

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  1. Well-Being, Disability, and Choosing Children.Matthew J. Barker & Robert A. Wilson - 2019 - Mind 128 (510):305-328.
    The view that it is better for life to be created free of disability is pervasive in both common sense and philosophy. We cast doubt on this view by focusing on an influential line of thinking that manifests it. That thinking begins with a widely-discussed principle, Procreative Beneficence, and draws conclusions about parental choice and disability. After reconstructing two versions of this argument, we critique the first by exploring the relationship between different understandings of well-being and disability, and the second (...)
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  2. Cohesion, Gene Flow, and the Nature of Species.Matthew J. Barker & Robert A. Wilson - 2010 - Journal of Philosophy 107 (2):59-77.
    A far-reaching and influential view in evolutionary biology claims that species are cohesive units held together by gene flow. Biologists have recognized empirical problems facing this view; after sharpening the expression of the view, we present novel conceptual problems for it. At the heart of these problems is a distinction between two importantly different concepts of cohesion, what we call integrative and response cohesion. Acknowledging the distinction problematizes both the explanandum of species cohesion and the explanans of gene flow that (...)
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  3. When Traditional Essentialism Fails.Robert A. Wilson, Matthew J. Barker & Ingo Brigandt - 2007 - Philosophical Topics 35 (1-2):189-215.
    Essentialism is widely regarded as a mistaken view of biological kinds, such as species. After recounting why (sections 2-3), we provide a brief survey of the chief responses to the “death of essentialism” in the philosophy of biology (section 4). We then develop one of these responses, the claim that biological kinds are homeostatic property clusters (sections 5-6) illustrating this view with several novel examples (section 7). Although this view was first expressed 20 years ago, and has received recent discussion (...)
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  4.  64
    Biological Individuals.Robert A. Wilson & Matthew J. Barker - 2019 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy 1 (1).
    The impressive variation amongst biological individuals generates many complexities in addressing the simple-sounding question what is a biological individual? A distinction between evolutionary and physiological individuals is useful in thinking about biological individuals, as is attention to the kinds of groups, such as superorganisms and species, that have sometimes been thought of as biological individuals. More fully understanding the conceptual space that biological individuals occupy also involves considering a range of other concepts, such as life, reproduction, and agency. There has (...)
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  5. The Concept Concept: The Wayward Path of Cognitive Science. [REVIEW]Frank C. Keil & Robert A. Wilson - 2000 - Mind and Language 15 (2-3):308-318.
    Critical discussion of Jerry Fodor's Concepts: Where Cognitive Science Went Wrong (1998).
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  6. Group-Level Cognition.Robert A. Wilson - 2001 - Philosophy of Science 68 (3):S262-S273.
    David Sloan Wilson has recently revived the idea of a group mind as an application of group selectionist thinking to cognition. Central to my discussion of this idea is the distinction between the claim that groups have a psychology and what I call the social manifestation thesis-a thesis about the psychology of individuals. Contemporary work on this topic has confused these two theses. My discussion also points to research questions and issues that Wilson's work raises, as well as (...)
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  7. Sociobiology.Robert A. Wilson - 2014 - Eugenics Archive.
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  8. Boundaries of the Mind: The Individual in the Fragile Sciences - Cognition.Robert A. Wilson - 2004 - Cambridge University Press.
    Where does the mind begin and end? Most philosophers and cognitive scientists take the view that the mind is bounded by the skull or skin of the individual. Robert Wilson, in this provocative and challenging 2004 book, provides the foundations for the view that the mind extends beyond the boundary of the individual. The approach adopted offers a unique blend of traditional philosophical analysis, cognitive science, and the history of psychology and the human sciences. A forthcoming companion volume Genes (...)
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  9. Species: New Interdisciplinary Essays.Robert A. Wilson - 1999 - MIT Press.
    This collection of original essays--by philosophers of biology, biologists, and cognitive scientists--provides a wide range of perspectives on species. Including contributions from David Hull, John Dupre, David Nanney, Kevin de Queiroz, and Kim Sterelny, amongst others, this book has become especially well-known for the three essays it contains on the homeostatic property cluster view of natural kinds, papers by Richard Boyd, Paul Griffiths, and Robert A. Wilson.
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  10. The Sound of Music: Externalist Style.Luke Kersten & Robert A. Wilson - 2016 - American Philosophical Quarterly 53 (2):139-154.
    Philosophical exploration of individualism and externalism in the cognitive sciences most recently has been focused on general evaluations of these two views (Adams & Aizawa 2008, Rupert 2008, Wilson 2004, Clark 2008). Here we return to broaden an earlier phase of the debate between individualists and externalists about cognition, one that considered in detail particular theories, such as those in developmental psychology (Patterson 1991) and the computational theory of vision (Burge 1986, Segal 1989). Music cognition is an area in (...)
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  11.  46
    Rethinking Incest Avoidance: Beyond the Disciplinary Groove of Culture-First Views.Robert A. Wilson - forthcoming - Biological Theory:1-14.
    In Wilson (2019), I articulated and defended a version of the Westermarck Effect by developing a phylogenetic argument that has purchase within primatology but that has had more limited appeal for cultural anthropologists due to their commitment to conventionalist or culture-first accounts of incest avoidance. Here I look to advance the discussion of incest and incest avoidance beyond culture-first accounts in two ways. First, I shall dig deeper into the disciplinary grooves within cultural anthropology that make attractive the view (...)
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  12.  10
    Introduction.Robert A. Wilson - 1999 - In Species: New Interdisciplinary Essays. Cambridge, MA, USA:
    This volume of twelve specially commissioned essays about species draws on the perspectives of prominent researchers from anthropology , botany, developmental psychology , the philosophy of biology and science, protozoology, and zoology . The concept of species has played a focal role in both evolutionary biology and the philosophy of biology , and the last decade has seen something of a publication boom on the topic (e.g., Otte and Endler 1989; Ereshefsky 1992b; Paterson 1994; lambert and Spence 1995; Claridge, Dawah, (...)
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  13.  21
    The C-Aplpha Non Exclusion Principle and the Vastly Different Internal Electron and Muon Center of Charge Vacuum Fluctuation Geometry.Jim Wilson - forthcoming - Physics Essays.
    The electronic and muonic hydrogen energy levels are calculated very accurately [1] in Quantum Electrodynamics (QED) by coupling the Dirac Equation four vector (c ,mc2) current covariantly with the external electromagnetic (EM) field four vector in QED’s Interactive Representation (IR). The c -Non Exclusion Principle(c -NEP) states that, if one accepts c as the electron/muon velocity operator because of the very accurate hydrogen energy levels calculated, the one must also accept the resulting electron/muon internal spatial and time coordinate operators (ISaTCO) (...)
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  14. Who Am I? Beyond 'I Think, Therefore I Am'.Alex Voorhoeve, Frances Kamm, Elie During, Timothy Wilson & David Jopling - 2011 - Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1234:134-148.
    Can we ever truly answer the question, “Who am I?” Moderated by Alex Voorhoeve (London School of Economics), neuro-philosopher Elie During (University of Paris, Ouest Nanterre), cognitive scientist David Jopling (York University, Canada), social psychologist Timothy Wilson (University of Virginia),and ethicist Frances Kamm (Harvard University) examine the difficulty of achieving genuine self-knowledge and how the pursuit of self-knowledge plays a role in shaping the self.
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  15.  59
    Enough is Enough: Austin on Knowing.Guy Longworth - 2018 - In Savas L. Tsohatzidis (ed.), Interpreting J. L. Austin: Critical Essays. Oxford, UK: pp. 186–205.
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  16. How to Situate Cognition: Letting Nature Take its Course.Robert A. Wilson & Andy Clark - 2009 - In Murat Aydede & P. Robbins (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Situated Cognition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 55--77.
    1. The Situation in Cognition 2. Situated Cognition: A Potted Recent History 3. Extensions in Biology, Computation, and Cognition 4. Articulating the Idea of Cognitive Extension 5. Are Some Resources Intrinsically Non-Cognitive? 6. Is Cognition Extended or Only Embedded? 7. Letting Nature Take Its Course.
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  17. A Conceptual and Empirical Framework for the Social Distribution of Cognition: The Case of Memory.Amanda Barnier, John Sutton, Celia Harris & Robert A. Wilson - 2008 - Cognitive Systems Research 9 (1):33-51.
    In this paper, we aim to show that the framework of embedded, distributed, or extended cognition offers new perspectives on social cognition by applying it to one specific domain: the psychology of memory. In making our case, first we specify some key social dimensions of cognitive distribution and some basic distinctions between memory cases, and then describe stronger and weaker versions of distributed remembering in the general distributed cognition framework. Next, we examine studies of social influences on memory in cognitive (...)
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  18. Wide Computationalism.Robert A. Wilson - 1994 - Mind 103 (411):351-72.
    The computational argument for individualism, which moves from computationalism to individualism about the mind, is problematic, not because computationalism is false, but because computational psychology is, at least sometimes, wide. The paper provides an early, or perhaps predecessor, version of the thesis of extended cognition.
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  19. Collective Memory, Group Minds, and the Extended Mind Thesis.Robert A. Wilson - 2005 - Cognitive Processing 6 (4).
    While memory is conceptualized predominantly as an individual capacity in the cognitive and biological sciences, the social sciences have most commonly construed memory as a collective phenomenon. Collective memory has been put to diverse uses, ranging from accounts of nationalism in history and political science to views of ritualization and commemoration in anthropology and sociology. These appeals to collective memory share the idea that memory ‘‘goes beyond the individual’’ but often run together quite different claims in spelling out that idea. (...)
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  20. Meaning Making and the Mind of the Externalist.Robert A. Wilson - 2010 - In Richard Menary (ed.), The Extended Mind. MIT Press. pp. 167--188.
    This paper attempts to do two things. First, it recounts the problem of intentionality, as it has typically been conceptualized, and argues that it needs to be reconceptualized in light of the radical form of externalism most commonly referred to as the extended mind thesis. Second, it provides an explicit, novel argument for that thesis, what I call the argument from meaning making, and offers some defense of that argument. This second task occupies the core of the paper, and in (...)
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  21. Two Views of Realization.Robert A. Wilson - 2001 - Philosophical Studies 104 (1):1-31.
    This paper examines the standard view of realization operative incontemporary philosophy of mind, and proposes an alternative, generalperspective on realization. The standard view can be expressed, insummary form, as the conjunction of two theses, the sufficiency thesis andthe constitutivity thesis. Physicalists of both reductionist and anti-reductionist persuasions share a conception of realization wherebyrealizations are determinative of the properties they realize and physically constitutive of the individuals with those properties. Centralto the alternative view that I explore here is the idea that (...)
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  22. Chance and Context.Toby Handfield & Alastair Wilson - 2014 - In Alastair Wilson (ed.), Chance and Temporal Asymmetry. Oxford University Press.
    The most familiar philosophical conception of objective chance renders determinism incompatible with non-trivial chances. This conception – associated in particular with the work of David Lewis – is not a good fit with our use of the word ‘chance’ and its cognates in ordinary discourse. In this paper we show how a generalized framework for chance can reconcile determinism with non-trivial chances, and provide for a more charitable interpretation of ordinary chance-talk. According to our proposal, variation in an admissible ‘evidence (...)
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  23. Ten Questions Concerning Extended Cognition.Robert A. Wilson - 2014 - Philosophical Psychology 27 (1):19-33.
    This paper considers ten questions that those puzzled by or skeptical of extended cognition have posed. Discussion of these questions ranges across substantive, methodological, and dialectical issues in the ongoing debate over extended cognition, such as whether the issue between proponents and opponents of extended cognition is merely semantic or a matter of convention; whether extended cognition should be treated in the same way as extended biology; and whether conscious mental states pose a special problem for the extended mind thesis. (...)
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  24. Extended Vision.Robert A. Wilson - 2010 - In Nivedita Gangopadhyay, Michael Madary & Finn Spicer (eds.), Perception, Action and Consciousness. Oxford University Press..
    Vision constitutes an interesting domain, or range of domains, for debate over the extended mind thesis, the idea that minds physically extend beyond the boundaries of the body. In part this is because vision and visual experience more particularly are sometimes presented as a kind of line in the sand for what we might call externalist creep about the mind: once all reasonable concessions have been made to externalists about the mind, visual experience marks a line beyond which lies a (...)
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  25.  26
    The Mind Beyond Itself.Robert A. Wilson - 2000 - In Dan Sperber (ed.), Metarepresentations: A Multidisciplinary Perspective. New York, NY, USA: Oxford University Press. pp. 31-52.
    This paper argues that the metarepresentational systems we posses are wide or extended, rather than individualistic. There are two basic ideas. The first is that metarepresentation inherits its width from the mental representation of its objects. The second is that mental processing often operates on internal and external symbols, and this suggests that cognitive systems extend beyond the heads that house them.
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  26.  68
    Explanation and Cognition.Frank C. Keil & Robert A. Wilson - 2000 - MIT Press.
    These essays draw on work in the history and philosophy of science, the philosophy of mind and language, the development of concepts in children, conceptual..
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  27. Promiscuous Realism.R. A. Wilson - 1996 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 47 (2):303-316.
    This paper is a critical discussion of John Dupré's recent defence of promiscuous realism in Part 1 of his The Disorder of Things: Metaphysical Foundations of the Disunity of Science. It also discusses some more general issues in the philosophy of biology and science. Dupré's chief strategy of argumentation appeals to debates within the philosophy of biology, all of which concern the nature of species. While the strategy is well motivated, I argue that Dupré's challenge to essentialist and unificationist views (...)
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  28. The Transitivity of Material Constitution.Robert A. Wilson - 2009 - Noûs 43 (2):363-377.
    In metaphysics, the view that material constitution is transitive is ubiquitous, an assumption expressed by both proponents and critics of constitution views. Likewise, it is typically assumed within the philosophy of mind that physical realization is a transitive relation. In both cases, this assumption of transitivity plays a role in discussion of the broader implications of a metaphysics that invokes either relation. Here I provide reasons for questioning this assumption and the uses to which this appeal to transitivity is put. (...)
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  29. Intentionality and Phenomenology.Robert A. Wilson - 2003 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 84 (4):413-431.
    This paper is a critique of some ideas about narrow content owing to Horgan and Tienson and Brian Loar.
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  30. Realization.Carl F. Craver & Robert A. Wilson - 2006 - In P. Thagard (ed.), Handbook of the Philosophy of Psychology and Cognitive Science. Elsevier.
    For the greater part of the last 50 years, it has been common for philosophers of mind and cognitive scientists to invoke the notion of realization in discussing the relationship between the mind and the brain. In traditional philosophy of mind, mental states are said to be realized, instantiated, or implemented in brain states. Artificial intelligence is sometimes described as the attempt either to model or to actually construct systems that realize some of the same psychological abilities that we and (...)
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  31. Primary and Secondary Qualities.Robert A. Wilson - 2016 - In Matthew Stuart (ed.), A Companion to Locke. Blackwell. pp. 193-211.
    The first half of this review article on Locke on primary and secondary qualities leads up to a fairly straightforward reading of what Locke says about the distinction in Essay II.viii, one that, in its general outlines, represents a sympathetic understanding of Locke’s discussion. The second half of the paper turns to consider a few of the ways in which interpreting Locke on primary and secondary qualities has proven more complicated. Here we take up what is sometimes called the Berkeleyan (...)
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  32. The Drink You Have When You’Re Not Having a Drink.Robert A. Wilson - 2008 - Mind and Language 23 (3):273–283.
    The Architecture of the Mind is itself built on foundations that deserve probing. In this brief commentary I focus on these foundations—Carruthers’ conception of modularity, his arguments for thinking that the mind is massively modular in structure, and his view of human cognitive architecture.
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  33. The Shadows and Shallows of Explanation.Robert A. Wilson & Frank C. Keil - 1998 - Minds and Machines 8 (1):137-159.
    We introduce two notions–the shadows and the shallows of explanation–in opening up explanation to broader, interdisciplinary investigation. The shadows of explanation refer to past philosophical efforts to provide either a conceptual analysis of explanation or in some other way to pinpoint the essence of explanation. The shallows of explanation refer to the phenomenon of having surprisingly limited everyday, individual cognitive abilities when it comes to explanation. Explanations are ubiquitous, but they typically are not accompanied by the depth that we might, (...)
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  34. Perception and Reality.Keith Wilson - 2013 - New Philosopher 1 (2):104-107.
    Taken at face value, the picture of reality suggested by modern science seems radically opposed to the world as we perceive it through our senses. Indeed, it is not uncommon to hear scientists and others claim that much of our perceptual experience is a kind of pervasive illusion rather than a faithful presentation of various aspects of reality. On this view, familiar properties such as colours and solidity, to take just two examples, do not belong to external objects, but are (...)
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  35. A Puzzle About Material Constitution and How to Solve It: Enriching Constitution Views in Metaphysics.Robert A. Wilson - 2007 - Philosophers' Imprint 7:1-20.
    Are materially constituted entities, such as statues and glasses of liquid, something more than their material constituents? The puzzle that frames this paper stems from conflicting answers to this question. At the core of the paper is a distinctive way of thinking about material constitution that posits two concepts of constitution, compositional and ampliative constitution, with the bulk of the discussion devoted to developing distinct analyses for these concepts. Distinguishing these concepts solves our initial puzzle and enriches the space of (...)
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  36. When is Deception in Research Ethical?Nafsika Athanassoulis & James Wilson - 2009 - Clinical Ethics 4 (1):44-49.
    This article examines when deceptive withholding of information is ethically acceptable in research. The first half analyses the concept of deception. We argue that there are two types of accounts of deception: normative and non-normative, and argue that non-normative accounts are preferable. The second half of the article argues that the relevant ethical question which ethics committees should focus on is not whether the person from whom the information is withheld will be deceived, but rather on the reasonableness of withholding (...)
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  37.  81
    Pluralism, Entwinement, and the Levels of Selection.Robert A. Wilson - 2003 - Philosophy of Science 70 (3):531-552.
    This paper distinguishes and critiques several forms of pluralism about the levels of selection, and introduces a novel way of thinking about the biological properties and processes typically conceptualized in terms of distinct levels. In particular, "levels" should be thought of as being entwined or fused. Since the pluralism discussed is held by divergent theorists, the argument has implications for many positions in the debate over the units of selection. And since the key points on which the paper turns apply (...)
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  38. Lucretius and the History of Science.Monte Ransome Johnson & Catherine Wilson - 2007 - In Stuart Gillespie & Philip R. Hardie (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to Lucretius. Cambridge University Press.
    An overview of the influence of Lucretius poem On the Nature of Things (De Rerum Natura) on the renaissance and scientific revolution of the seventeenth century, and an examination of its continuing influence over physical atomism in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
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  39. Persons, Social Agency, and Constitution.Robert A. Wilson - 2005 - Social Philosophy and Policy 22 (2):49-69.
    In her recent book Persons and Bodies1, Lynne Rudder Baker has defended what she calls the constitution view of persons. On this view, persons are constituted by their bodies, where “constitution” is a ubiquitous, general metaphysical relation distinct from more familiar relations, such as identity and part-whole composition.
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  40. Locke's Primary Qualities.Robert A. Wilson - 2002 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 40 (2):201-228.
    Introduction in chapter viii of book ii of An Essay Concerning Human Understanding, John Locke provides various putative lists of primary qualities. Insofar as they have considered the variation across Locke's lists at all, commentators have usually been content simply either to consider a self-consciously abbreviated list (e.g., "Size, Shape, etc.") or a composite list as the list of Lockean primary qualities, truncating such a composite list only by omitting supposedly co-referential terms. Doing the latter with minimal judgment about what (...)
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  41. Individualism, Causal Powers, and Explanation.Robert A. Wilson - 1992 - Philosophical Studies 68 (2):103-39.
    This paper examines a recent, influential argument for individualism in psychology defended by Jerry Fodor and others, what I call the argument from causal powers. I argue that this argument equivocates on the crucial notion of "causal powers", and that this equivocation constitutes a deep problem for arguments of this type. Relational and individualistic taxonomies are incompatible, and it does not seem in general to be possible to factor the former into the latter. The distinction between powers and properties plays (...)
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  42.  87
    Causal Depth, Theoretical Appropriateness, and Individualism in Psychology.Robert A. Wilson - 1994 - Philosophy of Science 61 (1):55-75.
    Individualists claim that wide explanations in psychology are problematic. I argue that wide psychological explanations sometimes have greater explanatory power than individualistic explanations. The aspects of explanatory power I focus on are causal depth and theoretical appropriateness. Reflection on the depth and appropriateness of other wide explanations of behavior, such as evolutionary explanations, clarifies why wide psychological explanations sometimes have more causal depth and theoretical appropriateness than narrow psychological explanations. I also argue for the rejection of eliminative materialism.
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  43.  46
    Individualism.Robert A. Wilson - 2002 - In Stephen P. Stich & Ted A. Warfield (eds.), Blackwell Guide to Philosophy of Mind. Blackwell. pp. 256--287.
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  44. Realization: Metaphysics, Mind, and Science.Robert A. Wilson - 2004 - Philosophy of Science 71 (5):985-996.
    This paper surveys some recent work on realization in the philosophy of mind and the philosophy of science.
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  45.  92
    Material Constitution and the Many-Many Problem.Robert A. Wilson - 2008 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 38 (2):pp. 201-217.
    This paper poses a problem of promiscuity for views that endorse material constitution as a metaphysic relation.
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  46. Recent Work on Individualism in the Social, Behavioural, and Biological Sciences.Robert A. Wilson - 2004 - Biology and Philosophy 19 (3):397-423.
    The social, behavioral, and a good chunk of the biological sciences concern the nature of individual agency, where our paradigm for an individual is a human being. Theories of economic behavior, of mental function and dysfunction, and of ontogenetic development, for example, are theories of how such individuals act, and of what internal and external factors are determinative of that action. Such theories construe individuals in distinctive ways.
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  47. Kant and the Marriage Right.Donald Wilson - 2004 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 85 (1):103–123.
    The provision of a marriage right is a distinctive aspect of Kant ’s political philosophy and seems, initially, difficult to reconcile with the general concern with ensuring external freedom of action apparent in the universal principle of Right and the sole innate right said to follow from this principle. I claim that this provision can be regarded as consistent with this general focus and that Kant ’s treatment of issue suggests an interesting secular argument for the institution of marriage.
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  48.  51
    Middle Theory, Inner Freedom, and Moral Health.Donald Wilson - 2007 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 24 (4):393 - 413.
    In her influential book, The Practice of Moral Judgment, Barbara Herman argues that Kantian ethics requires a “middle theory” applying formal rational constraints on willing to the particular circumstances and nature of human existence. I claim that a promising beginning to such a theory can be found in Kant’s discussion of duties of virtue in The Metaphysics of Morals. I argue that Kant’s distinction between perfect and imperfect duties of virtue should be understood as a distinction between duties concerned with (...)
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  49.  12
    Against A Priori Arguments for Individualism.Robert A. Wilson - 1993 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 74 (1):60-79.
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  50.  74
    Test Cases, Resolvability, and Group Selection: A Critical Examination of the Myxoma Case.Robert A. Wilson - 2004 - Philosophy of Science 71 (3):380-401.
    The evolution of the myxoma virus in Australia has been presented for many years as a test case for the hypothesis that group selection can function effectively `in the wild.' This paper critically examines the myxoma case, and argues that its failure as a test case for this hypothesis has broader implications for debates over the levels of selection.
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