11 found
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  1. Mental filing.Rachel Goodman & Aidan Gray - 2022 - Noûs 56 (1):204-226.
    We offer an interpretation of the mental files framework that eliminates the metaphor of files, information being contained in files, etc. The guiding question is whether, once we move beyond the metaphors, there is any theoretical role for files. We claim not. We replace the file-metaphor with two theses: the semantic thesis that there are irreducibly relational representational facts (viz. facts about the coordination of representations); and the metasemantic thesis that processes tied to information-relations ground those facts. In its canonical (...)
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  2. Against the Mental Files Conception of Singular Thought.Rachel Goodman - 2016 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 7 (2):437-461.
    It has become popular of late to identify the phenomenon of thinking a singular thought with that of thinking with a mental file. Proponents of the mental files conception of singular thought claim that one thinks a singular thought about an object o iff one employs a mental file to think about o. I argue that this is false by arguing that there are what I call descriptive mental files, so some file-based thought is not singular thought. Descriptive mental files (...)
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  3. Trading on Identity and Singular Thought.Rachel Goodman - 2022 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 100 (2):296-312.
    On the traditional relationalist conception of singular thought, a thought has singular content when it is based on an ‘information relation’ to its object. Recent work rejects relationalism and suggests singular thoughts are distinguished from descriptive thoughts by their inferential role: only thoughts with singular content can be employed in ‘direct’ inferences, or inferences that ‘trade on identity’. Firstly this view is insufficiently clear, because it conflates two distinct ideas—one about a kind of inference, the other a kind of process (...)
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  4. Do Acquaintance Theorists Have an Attitude Problem?Rachel Goodman - 2018 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 96 (1):67-86.
    This paper is about the relevance of attitude-ascriptions to debates about singular thought. It examines a methodology (common to early acquaintance theorists [Kaplan 1968] and recent critics of acquaintance [Hawthorne and Manley 2012], which assumes that the behaviour of ascriptions can be used to draw conclusions about singular thought. Although many theorists (e.g. [Recanati 2012]) reject this methodology, the literature lacks a detailed examination of its implications and the challenges faced by proponents and critics. I isolate an assumption of the (...)
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  5. Cognitivism, Significance and Singular Thought.Rachel Goodman - 2016 - Philosophical Quarterly 66 (263):236-260.
    This paper has a narrow and a broader target. The narrow target is a particular version of what I call the mental-files conception of singular thought, proposed by Robin Jeshion, and known as cognitivism. The broader target is the MFC in general. I give an argument against Jeshion's view, which gives us preliminary reason to reject the MFC more broadly. I argue Jeshion's theory of singular thought should be rejected because the central connection she makes between significance and singularity does (...)
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  6. On the supposed connection between proper names and singular thought.Rachel Goodman - 2018 - Synthese 195 (1):197-223.
    A thesis I call the name-based singular thought thesis is part of orthodoxy in contemporary philosophy of mind and language: it holds that taking part in communication involving a proper name puts one in a position to entertain singular thoughts about the name’s referent. I argue, first, that proponents of the NBT thesis have failed to explain the phenomenon of name-based singular thoughts, leaving it mysterious how name-use enables singular thoughts. Second, by outlining the reasoning that makes the NBT thesis (...)
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  7.  84
    Mental Files.Rachel Goodman - 2024 - Philosophy Compass 19 (3).
    The so-called ‘mental files theory’ in the philosophy of mind stems from an analogy comparing object-concepts to ‘files’, and the mind to a ‘filing system’. Though this analogy appears in philosophy of mind and language from the 1970s onward, it remains unclear to many how it should be interpreted. The central commitments of the mental files theory therefore also remain unclear. Based on influential uses of the file analogy within philosophy, I elaborate three central explanatory roles for mental files. Next, (...)
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  8. Singular Thought and Mental Files: An Introduction.Rachel Goodman & James Genone - 2020 - In Rachel Goodman, James Genone & Nick Kroll (eds.), Singular Thought and Mental Files. New York, NY, United States of America: Oxford University Press. pp. 1-17.
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  9. Why and how not to be a sortalist about thought.Rachel Goodman - 2012 - Philosophical Perspectives 26 (1):77-112.
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  10.  49
    Referring to the World, by Kenneth A. Taylor.Rachel Goodman - forthcoming - Mind.
    The foreword to Ken Taylor’s, Referring to the World, contains the text of a Facebook post from the day he completed a draft of the book—also the day of his death. Taylor writes that the book began its life ‘years and years and years ago’ as a short, opinionated introduction to the theory of reference, but became more an introduction to his own views than anything else. He also wrote: -/- The opinions and the supporting arguments have been developed over (...)
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  11. Names and Singular Thought.Rachel Goodman - 2021 - In Heimir Geirsson & Stephen Biggs (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Linguistic Reference. New York: Routledge. pp. 421-435.
    Influential work on proper names, most centrally associated with Kripke (1980), has had a significant influence in the literature on singular thought. The dominant position among contemporary singularists is that we can think singular thoughts about any object we can refer to by name and that, given the range of cases in which it is possible to refer using a name, name use in fact enables singular thought about a name's referent. I call this the extended name-based thought thesis (extended-NBT). (...)
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