Results for 'atelic functions'

998 found
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  1. Functional Constitutivism’s Misunderstood Resources: A Limited Defense of Smith’s Constitutivism.Kathryn Lindeman - 2019 - Ethics 130 (1):79-91.
    In recent work, Michael Smith argues that particular desires are constitutive of ideal agency and draws on his dispositional account of reasons to establish the normative significance of those desires. In a sustained critique, Michael Bukowski objects that Smith’s recent arguments that particular desires are constitutive of ideal agency rely on indefensible premises and his dispositional account of reasons is unable to establish the normative significance of such desires. On the contrary, I argue not only that Smith has the resources (...)
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  2. Function and Teleology.Justin Garson - 2008 - In Sahorta Sarkar & Anya Plutynski (eds.), Companion to the Philosophy of Biology. Blackwell. pp. 525-549.
    This is a short overview of the biological functions debate in philosophy. While it was fairly comprehensive when it was written, my short book ​A Critical Overview of Biological Functions has largely supplanted it as a definitive and up-to-date overview of the debate, both because the book takes into account new developments since then, and because the length of the book allowed me to go into substantially more detail about existing views.
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  3.  54
    Teleological functional explanations: a new naturalist synthesis.Mihnea Capraru - forthcoming - Acta Biotheoretica.
    The etiological account of teleological function is beset by several difficulties, which I propose to solve by grafting onto the etiological theory a subordinated goal-contribution clause. This approach enables us to ascribe neither too many teleofunctions nor too few; to give a unitary, one-clause analysis that works just as well for teleological functions derived from Darwinian evolution, as for those derived from human intention; and finally, to save the etiological theory from falsification, by explaining how, in spite of appearances, (...)
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  4. The function of perceptual learning.Zoe Jenkin - 2023 - Philosophical Perspectives 37 (1):172-186.
    Our perceptual systems are not stagnant but can learn from experience. Why is this so? That is, what is the function of perceptual learning? I consider two answers to this question: The Offloading View, which says that the function of perceptual learning is to offload tasks from cognition onto perception, thereby freeing up cognitive resources (Connolly, 2019) and the Perceptual View, which says that the function of perceptual learning is to improve the functioning of perception. I argue that the Perceptual (...)
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  5. The Function of Normative Process-Requirements.Julian Fink - 2012 - Dialectica 66 (1):115-136.
    This paper discusses whether rationality, morality or prudence impose process-requirements upon us. It has been argued that process-requirements fulfil two essential functions within a system of rational, moral or prudential requirements. These functions are considered to prove the existence of process-requirements. First, process-requirements are deemed necessary to ensure that rationality, morality or prudence can guide our deliberations and actions. Second, their existence is regarded as essential for the correctness of our ordinary explanations of why a person possesses a (...)
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  6.  83
    The Function Argument for Ascribing Interests.Parisa Moosavi - forthcoming - Synthese.
    In the debate over the moral status of nonsentient organisms, biocentrists argue that all living things, including nonsentient ones, have interests of their own. They often defend this claim by arguing that living organisms are goal-directed, functionally organized systems. This argument for ascribing interests has faced a serious challenge that is sometimes called the Problem of Scope. Critics have argued that ascribing interests on the basis of functional organization would have implausible implications regarding the scope of the argument, such as (...)
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  7. An account of conserved functions and how biologists use them to integrate cell and evolutionary biology.Jeremy G. Wideman, Steve Elliott & Beckett Sterner - 2023 - Biology and Philosophy 38 (5):1-23.
    We characterize a type of functional explanation that addresses why a homologous trait originating deep in the evolutionary history of a group remains widespread and largely unchanged across the group’s lineages. We argue that biologists regularly provide this type of explanation when they attribute conserved functions to phenotypic and genetic traits. The concept of conserved function applies broadly to many biological domains, and we illustrate its importance using examples of molecular sequence alignments at the intersection of evolution and cell (...)
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  8. Function-Based Conceptual Engineering and the Authority Problem.Matthieu Queloz - 2022 - Mind 131 (524):1247-1278.
    In this paper, I identify a central problem for conceptual engineering: the problem of showing concept-users why they should recognise the authority of the concepts advocated by engineers. I argue that this authority problem cannot generally be solved by appealing to the increased precision, consistency, or other theoretical virtues of engineered concepts. Outside contexts in which we anyway already aim to realise theoretical virtues, solving the authority problem requires engineering to take a functional turn and attend to the functions (...)
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  9. Function, Fitness, Flourishing.Paul Bloomfield - 2023 - In Paul Bloomfield & David Copp (eds.), Oxford Handbook of Moral Realism. Oxford University Press. pp. 264-292.
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  10. Ontology of the wave function and the many-worlds interpretation.Lev Vaidman (ed.) - 2019 - Cambridge University Press, UK.
    It is argued that the many-worlds interpretation is by far the best interpretation of quantum mechanics. The key points of this view are viewing the wave functions of worlds in three dimensions and understanding probability through self-locating uncertainty.
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  11. Functional integration and the mind.Jakob Hohwy - 2007 - Synthese 159 (3):315-328.
    Different cognitive functions recruit a number of different, often overlapping, areas of the brain. Theories in cognitive and computational neuroscience are beginning to take this kind of functional integration into account. The contributions to this special issue consider what functional integration tells us about various aspects of the mind such as perception, language, volition, agency, and reward. Here, I consider how and why functional integration may matter for the mind; I discuss a general theoretical framework, based on generative models, (...)
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  12. The function of morality.Nicholas Smyth - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (5):1127-1144.
    What is the function of morality? On this question, something approaching a consensus has recently emerged. Impressed by developments in evolutionary theory, many philosophers now tell us that the function of morality is to reduce social tensions, and to thereby enable a society to efficiently promote the well-being of its members. In this paper, I subject this consensus to rigorous scrutiny, arguing that the functional hypothesis in question is not well supported. In particular, I attack the supposed evidential relation between (...)
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  13. On the functionalization of pluralist approaches to truth.Cory Wright - 2005 - Synthese 145 (1):1–28.
    Traditional inflationary approaches that specify the nature of truth are attractive in certain ways; yet, while many of these theories successfully explain why propositions in certain domains of discourse are true, they fail to adequately specify the nature of truth because they run up against counterexamples when attempting to generalize across all domains. One popular consequence is skepticism about the efficaciousness of inflationary approaches altogether. Yet, by recognizing that the failure to explain the truth of disparate propositions often stems from (...)
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  14. The Functional Approach: Scientific Progress as Increased Usefulness.Yafeng Shan - 2022 - In New Philosophical Perspectives on Scientific Progress. New York: Routledge. pp. 46-61.
    The functional approach to scientific progress has been mainly developed by Kuhn, Lakatos, Popper, Laudan, and more recently by Shan. The basic idea is that science progresses if key functions of science are fulfilled in a better way. This chapter defends the function approach. It begins with an overview of the two old versions of the functional approach by examining the work of Kuhn, Laudan, Popper, and Lakatos. It then argues for Shan’s new functional approach, in which scientific progress (...)
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  15. The functional sense of mechanism.Justin Garson - 2013 - Philos Sci 80 (3):317-333.
    This article presents a distinct sense of ‘mechanism’, which I call the functional sense of mechanism. According to this sense, mechanisms serve functions, and this fact places substantive restrictions on the kinds of system activities ‘for which’ there can be a mechanism. On this view, there are no mechanisms for pathology; pathologies result from disrupting mechanisms for functions. Second, on this sense, natural selection is probably not a mechanism for evolution because it does not serve a function. After (...)
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  16. Function, selection, and construction in the brain.Justin Garson - 2012 - Synthese 189 (3):451-481.
    A common misunderstanding of the selected effects theory of function is that natural selection operating over an evolutionary time scale is the only functionbestowing process in the natural world. This construal of the selected effects theory conflicts with the existence and ubiquity of neurobiological functions that are evolutionary novel, such as structures underlying reading ability. This conflict has suggested to some that, while the selected effects theory may be relevant to some areas of evolutionary biology, its relevance to neuroscience (...)
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  17. The Function of Assertion and Social Norms.Peter Graham - 2018 - In Sanford C. Goldberg (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Assertion. Oxford University Press. pp. 727-748.
    A proper function of an entity is a beneficial effect that helps explain the persistence of the entity. Proper functions thereby arise through feedback mechanisms with beneficial effects as inputs and persistence as outputs. We continue to make assertions because they benefit speakers by benefiting speakers. Hearers benefit from true information. Speakers benefit by influencing hearer belief. If hearers do not benefit, they will not form beliefs in response to assertions. Speakers can then only maintain influence by providing true (...)
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  18. The iterative conception of function and the iterative conception of set.Tim Button - 2023 - In Carolin Antos, Neil Barton & Giorgio Venturi (eds.), The Palgrave Companion to the Philosophy of Set Theory. Palgrave.
    Hilary Putnam once suggested that “the actual existence of sets as ‘intangible objects’ suffers… from a generalization of a problem first pointed out by Paul Benacerraf… are sets a kind of function or are functions a sort of set?” Sadly, he did not elaborate; my aim, here, is to do so on his behalf. There are well-known methods for treating sets as functions and functions as sets. But these do not raise any obvious philosophical or foundational puzzles. (...)
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  19. Function, role and disposition in Basic Formal Ontology.Robert Arp & Barry Smith - 2008 - Proceedings of Bio-Ontologies Workshop, Intelligent Systems for Molecular Biology (ISMB), Toronto.
    Numerous research groups are now utilizing Basic Formal Ontology as an upper-level framework to assist in the organization and integration of biomedical information. This paper provides elucidation of the three existing BFO subcategories of realizable entity, namely function, role, and disposition. It proposes one further sub-category of tendency, and considers the merits of recognizing two sub-categories of function for domain ontologies, namely, artifactual and biological function. The motivation is to help advance the coherent ontological treatment of functions, roles, and (...)
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  20. The Function of Pain.Laurenz C. Casser - 2021 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 99 (2):364-378.
    Various prominent theories of pain assume that it is pain’s biological function to inform organisms about damage to their bodies. I argue that this is a mistake. First, there is no biological evidence to support the notion that pain was originally selected for its informative capacities, nor that it currently contributes to the fitness of organisms in this specific capacity. Second, neurological evidence indicates that modulating mechanisms in the nociceptive system systematically prevent pain from serving a primarily informative role. These (...)
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  21. The Function of Perception.Peter J. Graham - 2014 - In Abrol Fairweather (ed.), Virtue Scientia: Bridges between Virtue Epistemology and Philosophy of Science. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Synthese Library. pp. 13-31.
    What is the biological function of perception? I hold perception, especially visual perception in humans, has the biological function of accurately representing the environment. Tyler Burge argues this cannot be so in Origins of Objectivity (Oxford, 2010), for accuracy is a semantical relationship and not, as such, a practical matter. Burge also provides a supporting example. I rebut the argument and the example. Accuracy is sometimes also a practical matter if accuracy partly explains how perception contributes to survival and reproduction.
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  22. Warrant, Functions, History.Peter J. Graham - 2014 - In Abrol Fairweather & Owen Flanagan (eds.), Naturalizing Epistemic Virtue. New York: Cambridge University Press. pp. 15-35.
    Epistemic warrant consists in the normal functioning of the belief-forming process when the process has forming true beliefs reliably as an etiological function. Evolution by natural selection is the most familiar source of etiological functions. . What then of learning? What then of Swampman? Though functions require history, natural selection is not the only source. Self-repair and trial-and-error learning are both sources. Warrant requires history, but not necessarily that much.
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  23. Function, modality, mental content.Bence Nanay - 2011 - Journal of Mind and Behavior 32 (2):84-87.
    I clarify some of the details of the modal theory of function I outlined in Nanay (2010): (a) I explicate what it means that the function of a token biological trait is fixed by modal facts; (b) I address an objection to my trait type individuation argument against etiological function and (c) I examine the consequences of replacing the etiological theory of function with a modal theory for the prospects of using the concept of biological function to explain mental content.
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  24. The Functions of Diagnoses in Medicine and Psychiatry.Hane Htut Maung - 2019 - In Bluhm Robyn & Tekin Serife (eds.), The Bloomsbury Companion to the Philosophy of Psychiatry. Bloomsbury. pp. 507-526.
    Diagnoses are central to the practice of medicine, where they serve a variety of functions for clinicians, patients, and society. They aid communication, explain symptoms, inform predictions, guide therapeutic interventions, legitimize sickness, and authorize access to resources. Insofar as psychiatry is a discipline whose practice is shaped by medical conventions, its diagnoses are sometimes presented as if they serve the same sorts of function as diagnoses in bodily medicine. However, there are philosophical problems that cast doubt on whether the (...)
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  25. Maximality, Function, and the Many.Robert Francescotti - 2019 - Metaphysica 20 (2):175-193.
    In the region where some cat sits, there are many very cat-like items that are proper parts of the cat (or otherwise mereologically overlap the cat) , but which we are inclined to think are not themselves cats, e.g. all of Tibbles minus the tail. The question is, how can something be so cat-like without itself being a cat. Some have tried to answer this “Problem of the Many” (a problem that arises for many different kinds of things we regularly (...)
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  26. Function essentialism about artifacts.Tim Juvshik - 2021 - Philosophical Studies (9):2943-2964.
    Much recent discussion has focused on the nature of artifacts, particularly on whether artifacts have essences. While the general consensus is that artifacts are at least intention-dependent, an equally common view is function essentialism about artifacts, the view that artifacts are essentially functional objects and that membership in an artifact kind is determined by a particular, shared function. This paper argues that function essentialism about artifacts is false. First, the two component conditions of function essentialism are given a clear and (...)
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  27. The Ethical Function of the Gorgias' Concluding Myth.Nicholas R. Baima - 2024 - In J. Clerk Shaw (ed.), Plato's Gorgias: a critical guide. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.
    The Gorgias ends with Socrates telling an eschatological myth that he insists is a rational account and no mere tale. Using this story, Socrates reasserts the central lessons of the previous discussion. However, it isn’t clear how this story can persuade any of the characters in the dialogue. Those (such as Socrates) who already believe the underlying philosophical lessons don’t appear to require the myth, and those (such as Callicles) who reject these teachings are unlikely to be moved by this (...)
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  28. Assigning Functions to Medical Technologies.Alexander Mebius - 2017 - Philosophy and Technology 30 (3):321-338.
    Modern health care relies extensively on the use of technologies for assessing and treating patients, so it is important to be certain that health care technologies perform their professed functions in an effective and safe manner. Philosophers of technology have developed methods to assign and evaluate the functions of technological products, the major elements of which are described in the ICE theory. This paper questions whether the standard of evidence advocated by the ICE theory is adequate for ascribing (...)
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  29. Functions in Basic Formal Ontology.Andrew D. Spear, Werner Ceusters & Barry Smith - 2016 - Applied ontology 11 (2):103-128.
    The notion of function is indispensable to our understanding of distinctions such as that between being broken and being in working order (for artifacts) and between being diseased and being healthy (for organisms). A clear account of the ontology of functions and functioning is thus an important desideratum for any top-level ontology intended for application to domains such as engineering or medicine. The benefit of using top-level ontologies in applied ontology can only be realized when each of the categories (...)
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  30. Functional diversity: An epistemic roadmap.Christophe Malaterre, Antoine C. Dussault, Sophia Rousseau-Mermans, Gillian Barker, Beatrix E. Beisner, Frédéric Bouchard, Eric Desjardins, Tanya I. Handa, Steven W. Kembel, Geneviève Lajoie, Virginie Maris, Alison D. Munson, Jay Odenbaugh, Timothée Poisot, B. Jesse Shapiro & Curtis A. Suttle - 2019 - BioScience 10 (69):800-811.
    Functional diversity holds the promise of understanding ecosystems in ways unattainable by taxonomic diversity studies. Underlying this promise is the intuition that investigating the diversity of what organisms actually do—i.e. their functional traits—within ecosystems will generate more reliable insights into the ways these ecosystems behave, compared to considering only species diversity. But this promise also rests on several conceptual and methodological—i.e. epistemic—assumptions that cut across various theories and domains of ecology. These assumptions should be clearly addressed, notably for the sake (...)
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  31. Internal Perspectivalism: The Solution to Generality Problems About Proper Function and Natural Norms.Jason Winning - 2020 - Biology and Philosophy 35 (33):1-22.
    In this paper, I argue that what counts as the proper function of a trait is a matter of the de facto perspective that the biological system, itself, possesses on what counts as proper functioning for that trait. Unlike non-perspectival accounts, internal perspectivalism does not succumb to generality problems. But unlike external perspectivalism, internal perspectivalism can provide a fully naturalistic, mind-independent grounding of proper function and natural norms. The attribution of perspectives to biological systems is intended to be neither metaphorical (...)
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  32. Functions and mental representation: the theoretical role of representations and its real nature.Miguel Ángel Sebastián - 2017 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 16 (2):317-336.
    Representations are not only used in our folk-psychological explanations of behaviour, but are also fruitfully postulated, for example, in cognitive science. The mainstream view in cognitive science maintains that our mind is a representational system. This popular view requires an understanding of the nature of the entities they are postulating. Teleosemantic theories face this challenge, unpacking the normativity in the relation of representation by appealing to the teleological function of the representing state. It has been argued that, if intentionality is (...)
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  33. Function attribution depends on the explanatory context: A Reply to Neander and Rosenberg's Reply to Nanay.Bence Nanay - 2012 - Journal of Philosophy 109 (10):623-627.
    In ‘A modal theory of function’, I gave an argument against all existing theories of function and outlined a new theory. Karen Neander and Alex Rosenberg argue against both my negative and my positive claim. My aim here is not merely to defend my account from their objections, but to (a) very briefly point out that the new account of etiological function they propose in response to my criticism cannot avoid the circularity worry either and, more importantly, to (b) highlight, (...)
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  34. Wave Function Ontology.Bradley Monton - 2002 - Synthese 130 (2):265-277.
    I argue that the wave function ontology for quantum mechanics is an undesirable ontology. This ontology holds that the fundamental space in which entities evolve is not three-dimensional, but instead 3N-dimensional, where N is the number of particles standardly thought to exist in three-dimensional space. I show that the state of three-dimensional objects does not supervene on the state of objects in 3N-dimensional space. I also show that the only way to guarantee the existence of the appropriate mental states in (...)
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  35. Functional Independence and Cognitive Architecture.Vincent Bergeron - 2016 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 67 (3):817-836.
    In cognitive science, the concept of dissociation has been central to the functional individuation and decomposition of cognitive systems. Setting aside debates about the legitimacy of inferring the existence of dissociable systems from ‘behavioural’ dissociation data, the main idea behind the dissociation approach is that two cognitive systems are dissociable, and thus viewed as distinct, if each can be damaged, or impaired, without affecting the other system’s functions. In this article, I propose a notion of functional independence that does (...)
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  36. Mind and anti-mind: Why thinking has no functional definition.George Bealer - 1984 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 9 (1):283-328.
    Functionalism would be mistaken if there existed a system of deviant relations (an “anti-mind”) that had the same functional roles as the standard mental relations. In this paper such a system is constructed, using “Quinean transformations” of the sort associated with Quine’s thesis of the indeterminacy of translation. For example, a mapping m from particularistic propositions (e.g., that there exists a rabbit) to universalistic propositions (that rabbithood is manifested). Using m, a deviant relation thinking* is defined: x thinks* p iff (...)
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  37. Functional Anatomy: A Taxonomic Proposal.Ingvar Johansson, Barry Smith, Katherine Dormandy [nee Munn], Kathleen Elsner, Nikoloz Tsikolia & DIrk Siebert - 2005 - Acta Biotheoretica 53 (3):153-166.
    It is argued that medical science requires a classificatory system that (a) puts functions in the taxonomic center and (b) does justice ontologically to the difference between the processes which are the realizations of functions and the objects which are their bearers. We propose formulae for constructing such a system and describe some of its benefits. The arguments are general enough to be of interest to all the life sciences.
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  38. Realism and instrumentalism about the wave function. How should we choose?Mauro Dorato & Federico Laudisa - 2014 - In Shao Gan (ed.), Protective Measurements and Quantum Reality: Toward a New Understanding of Quantum Mechanics. Cambridge University Press.
    The main claim of the paper is that one can be ‘realist’ (in some sense) about quantum mechanics without requiring any form of realism about the wave function. We begin by discussing various forms of realism about the wave function, namely Albert’s configuration-space realism, Dürr Zanghi and Goldstein’s nomological realism about Ψ, Esfeld’s dispositional reading of Ψ Pusey Barrett and Rudolph’s realism about the quantum state. By discussing the articulation of these four positions, and their interrelation, we conclude that instrumentalism (...)
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  39. Function-Theoretic Explanation and the Search for Neural Mechanisms.Frances Egan - 2017 - In Explanation and Integration in Mind and Brain Science 145-163. Oxford, UK: pp. 145-163.
    A common kind of explanation in cognitive neuroscience might be called functiontheoretic: with some target cognitive capacity in view, the theorist hypothesizes that the system computes a well-defined function (in the mathematical sense) and explains how computing this function constitutes (in the system’s normal environment) the exercise of the cognitive capacity. Recently, proponents of the so-called ‘new mechanist’ approach in philosophy of science have argued that a model of a cognitive capacity is explanatory only to the extent that it reveals (...)
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  40. Revealing Social Functions through Pragmatic Genealogies.Matthieu Queloz - 2020 - In Rebekka Hufendiek, Daniel James & Raphael van Riel (eds.), Social Functions in Philosophy: Metaphysical, Normative, and Methodological Perspectives. New York: Routledge. pp. 200-218.
    There is an under-appreciated tradition of genealogical explanation that is centrally concerned with social functions. I shall refer to it as the tradition of pragmatic genealogy. It runs from David Hume (T, 3.2.2) and the early Friedrich Nietzsche (TL) through E. J. Craig (1990, 1993) to Bernard Williams (2002) and Miranda Fricker (2007). These pragmatic genealogists start out with a description of an avowedly fictional “state of nature” and end up ascribing social functions to particular building blocks of (...)
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  41. Functional Analyses, Mechanistic Explanations, and Explanatory Tradeoffs.Sergio Daniel Barberis - 2013 - Journal of Cognitive Science 14:229-251.
    Recently, Piccinini and Craver have stated three theses concerning the relations between functional analysis and mechanistic explanation in cognitive sciences: No Distinctness: functional analysis and mechanistic explanation are explanations of the same kind; Integration: functional analysis is a kind of mechanistic explanation; and Subordination: functional analyses are unsatisfactory sketches of mechanisms. In this paper, I argue, first, that functional analysis and mechanistic explanations are sub-kinds of explanation by scientific (idealized) models. From that point of view, we must take into account (...)
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  42. The functions of Russell’s no class theory.Kevin C. Klement - 2010 - Review of Symbolic Logic 3 (4):633-664.
    Certain commentators on Russell's “no class” theory, in which apparent reference to classes or sets is eliminated using higher-order quantification, including W. V. Quine and (recently) Scott Soames, have doubted its success, noting the obscurity of Russell’s understanding of so-called “propositional functions”. These critics allege that realist readings of propositional functions fail to avoid commitment to classes or sets (or something equally problematic), and that nominalist readings fail to meet the demands placed on classes by mathematics. I show (...)
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  43. The Function Argument in the Eudemian Ethics.Roy C. Lee - 2022 - Ancient Philosophy 42 (1):191-214.
    This paper reconstructs the function argument of Aristotle’s Eudemian Ethics 2.1. The argument seeks to define happiness through the method of division; shows that the highest good is better than all four of the goods of the soul, not only two, as commentators have thought; and unlike the Nicomachean argument, makes the highest good definitionally independent of the human function.
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  44. A Function-Centered Taxonomy of Visual Attention.Ronald A. Rensink - 2015 - In Paul Coates & Sam Coleman (eds.), Phenomenal Qualities: Sense, Perception, and Consciousness. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 347-375.
    It is suggested that the relationship between visual attention and conscious visual experience can be simplified by distinguishing different aspects of both visual attention and visual experience. A set of principles is first proposed for any possible taxonomy of the processes involved in visual attention. A particular taxonomy is then put forward that describes five such processes, each with a distinct function and characteristic mode of operation. Based on these, three separate kinds—or possibly grades—of conscious visual experience can be distinguished, (...)
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  45. A Modal Theory of Function.Bence Nanay - 2010 - Journal of Philosophy 107 (8):412-431.
    The function of a trait token is usually defined in terms of some properties of other (past, present, future) tokens of the same trait type. I argue that this strategy is problematic, as trait types are (at least partly) individuated by their functional properties, which would lead to circularity. In order to avoid this problem, I suggest a way to define the function of a trait token in terms of the properties of the very same trait token. To able to (...)
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  46. Realism about the wave function.Eddy Keming Chen - 2019 - Philosophy Compass 14 (7):e12611.
    A century after the discovery of quantum mechanics, the meaning of quantum mechanics still remains elusive. This is largely due to the puzzling nature of the wave function, the central object in quantum mechanics. If we are realists about quantum mechanics, how should we understand the wave function? What does it represent? What is its physical meaning? Answering these questions would improve our understanding of what it means to be a realist about quantum mechanics. In this survey article, I review (...)
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  47. Functional Reduction with a Third Step:a Larger and Less Reductive Picture.Ronald Endicott - 2022 - ProtoSociology 39:89-106.
    Functional reduction follows two familiar steps: a definition of a higher-level or special science property in terms of a functional role, then a statement describing a physical property that plays or occupies that role. But Kim (2005) adds a third step, namely, an explanation regarding how the physical property occupies the functional role. I think Kim is correct. But how is the third step satisfied? An examination of the pertinent scientific explanations reveals that the third step is best satisfied by (...)
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  48. The Functional Composition of Sense.Bryan Pickel - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):6917-6942.
    A central dispute in understanding Frege’s philosophy concerns how the sense of a complex expression relates to the senses of its component expressions. According to one reading, the sense of a complex expression is a whole built from the senses of the component expressions. On this interpretation, Frege is an early proponent of structured propositions. A rival reading says that senses compose by functional application: the sense of a complex expression is the value of the function denoted by its functional (...)
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  49. Proper function and recent selection.Peter H. Schwartz - 1999 - Philosophy of Science 66 (3):210-222.
    "Modern History" versions of the etiological theory claim that in order for a trait X to have the proper function F, individuals with X must have been recently favored by natural selection for doing F (Godfrey-Smith 1994; Griffiths 1992, 1993). For many traits with prototypical proper functions, however, such recent selection may not have occurred: traits may have been maintained due to lack of variation or due to selection for other effects. I examine this flaw in Modern History accounts (...)
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  50. Functional explanation and metaphysical individualism.Justin Schwartz - 1993 - Philosophy of Science 60 (2):278-301.
    G. A. Cohen defends and Jon Elster criticizes Marxist use of functional explanation. But Elster's mechanical conception of explanation is, contrary to Elster's claims, a better basis for vindication of functional explanation than Cohen's nomological conception, which cannot provide an adequate account of functional explanation. Elster also objects that functional explanation commits us to metaphysically bizarre collective subjects, but his argument requires an implausible reading of methodological individualism which involves an unattractive eliminativism about social phenomena.
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