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7.1. Philosophy of Cognitive Science, Miscellaneous (Philosophy of Cognitive Science, Miscellaneous on PhilPapers)

Walmsley, Joel (2010). Emergence and Reduction in Dynamical Cognitive Science. New Ideas in Psychology 28:274-282.   (Google)
Abstract: This paper examines the widespread intuition that the dynamical approach to cognitive science is importantly related to emergentism about the mind. The explanatory practices adopted by dynamical cognitive science rule out some conceptions of emergence; covering law explanations require a deducibility relationship between explanans and explanandum, whereas canonical theories of emergence require the absence of such deducibility. A response to this problem – one which would save the intuition that dynamics and emergence are related – is to reconstrue the concept of emergence as a relationship between laws. I call this “nomological emergence” and comment on the extent to which dynamicists would find it acceptable. Alternatively, dynamical cognitive science might be viewed as fitting better with the kind of “functional reductionism” which has recently been developed by authors such as Jaegwon Kim. Which of these two alternatives is preferable remains an open question pending the further development of dynamical cognitive science, particularly in its “non-classical” forms.

7.1a Nativism in Cognitive Science

104 / 112 entries displayed

Antony, Louise M. (2001). Empty heads? Mind and Language 16 (2):193-214.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Ariew, André (1996). Innateness and canalization. Philosophy of Science Supplement 63 (3):19-27.   (Cited by 63 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Cognitive scientists often employ the notion of innateness without defining it. The issue is, how is innateness defined in biology? Some critics contend that innateness is not a legitimate concept in biology. In this paper I will argue that it is. However, neither the concept of high heritability nor the concept of flat norm of reaction (two popular accounts in the biology literature) define innateness. An adequate account is found in developmental biology. I propose that innateness is best defined in terms of C. H. Waddington's concept of canalization
Ariew, Andre (1999). Innateness is canalization: In defense of a developmental account of innateness. In Valerie Gray Hardcastle & Valerie (eds.), [Book Chapter] (in Press). MIT Press, Cambridge, MA.   (Cited by 62 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Lorenz proposed in his (1935) articulation of a theory of behavioral instincts that the objective of ethology is to distinguish behaviors that are “innate” from behaviors that are “learned” (or “acquired”). Lorenz’s motive was to open the investigation of certain “adaptive” behaviors to evolutionary theorizing. Accordingly, since innate behaviors are “genetic”, they are open to such investigation. By Lorenz’s light an innate/acquired or learned dichotomy rested on a familiar Darwinian distinction between genes and environments. Ever since Lorenz, ascriptions of innateness have become widespread in the cognitive, behavioral, and biological sciences. The trend continues despite decades of strong arguments that show, in particular, the dichotomy that Lorenz invoked in his theory of behavioral instincts is literally false: no biological trait is the product of genes alone. Some critics suggest that the failure of Lorenz’s account shows that innateness is not well-defined in biology and the practice of ascribing innateness to various biological traits should be dropped from respectable science. Elsewhere (Ariew 1996) I argued that despite the arguments of critics, there really is a biological phenomenon underlying the concept of innateness. On my view, innateness is best understood in terms of C.H. Waddington’s concept of “canalization”, i.e. the degree to which a trait is innate is the degree to which its developmental outcome is canalized. The degree to which a developmental outcome is canalized is the degree to which the developmental process is bound to produce a particular endstate despite environmental fluctuations both in the development’s initial state and during the course of development. The canalization account differs in many ways to the traditional ways that ethologists such as Konrad Lorenz originally understood the concept of innateness. Most importantly, on the canalization account the distinction between innate and acquired is not a dichotomy, as Konrad Lorenz had it, but rather a matter of degree difference that lies along a spectrum with highly canalized development outcomes on the one end and highly environmentally sensitive development outcomes on the other end. Nevertheless, I justified the canalization account on the basis of a set of desiderata or criteria that I suggested falls-out of what seemed uncontroversial about Lorenz’s account of innateness (briefly): innateness is a property of a developing individual, innateness denotes environmental stability, and innate-ascriptions are useful in certain natural selection explanations (more below). From that same set of desiderata I argued (in my 1996) that neither the concept of heritability nor of norms of reactions—two concepts from population genetics—suffice to ground innateness. In this essay, I wish to provide further support of the canalization account in two ways. First, I wish to better motivate the desiderata by revisiting a debate between Konrad Lorenz and Daniel Lehrman over the meaning and explanatory usefulness of innate ascriptions in ethology. Second, I wish to compare my canalization account of innateness with accounts proposed by contemporary philosophers, one by Stephen Stich (1975), another by Elliott Sober (forthcoming), and a third by William Wimsatt (1986)
Baker, Mark C. (2006). The innate endowment for language: Underspecified or overspecified? In Peter Carruthers (ed.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Bechtel, William & Abrahamsen, Adele (2005). Mechanistic explanation and the nature-nurture controversy. Bulletin d'Histoire Et d'pistmologie Des Sciences de La Vie 12:75-100.   (Google)
Abstract: Both in biology and psychology there has been a tendency on the part of many investigators to focus solely on the mature organism and ignore development. There are many reasons for this, but an important one is that the explanatory framework often invoked in the life sciences for understanding a given phenomenon, according to which explanation consists in identifying the mechanism that produces that phenomenon, both makes it possible to side-step the development issue and to provide inadequate resources for actually explaining development. When biologists and psychologists do take up the question of development, they find themselves confronted with two polarizing positions of nativism and empiricism. However, the mechanistic framework, insofar as it emphasizes organization and recognizes the potential for self-organization, does in fact provide the resources for an account of development which avoids the nativism-empiricism dichotomy
Bechtel, William P. (1996). What knowledge must be in the head in order to acquire language. In B. Velichkovsky & Duane M. Rumbaugh (eds.), Communicating Meaning: The Evolution and Development of Language. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.   (Cited by 9 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Many studies of language, whether in philosophy, linguistics, or psychology, have focused on highly developed human languages. In their highly developed forms, such as are employed in scientific discourse, languages have a unique set of properties that have been the focus of much attention. For example, descriptive sentences in a language have the property of being "true" or "false," and words of a language have senses and referents. Sentences in a language are structured in accord with complex syntactic rules. Theorists focusing on language are naturally led to ask questions such as what constitutes the meanings of words and sentences and how are the principles of syntax encoded in the heads of language users. While there is an important function for inquiries into the highly developed forms of these cultural products (Abrahamsen, 1987), such a focus can be quite misleading when we want to explain how these products have arisen or the human capacity to use language. The problem is that focusing on its most developed forms makes linguistic ability seem to be a _sui generis_ phenomenon, not related to, and hence not explicable in terms of other cognitive capacities. Chomsky's (1980) postulation of a specific language module equipped with specialized resources needed to process language and possessed only by hum ans is not a surprising result
Boyd, Robert & Richerson, Peter (2006). Culture, adaptation, and innateness. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Cain, M. J. (2006). Concept nativism and the rule following considerations. Acta Analytica 21 (38):77-101.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In this paper I argue that the most prominent and familiar features of Wittgenstein’s rule following considerations generate a powerful argument for the thesis that most of our concepts are innate, an argument that echoes a Chomskyan poverty of the stimulus argument. This argument has a significance over and above what it tells us about Wittgenstein’s implicit commitments. For, it puts considerable pressure on widely held contemporary views of concept learning, such as the view that we learn concepts by constructing prototypes. This should lead us to abandon our general default hostility to concept nativism and be much more sceptical of claims made on behalf of learning theories
Carruthers, Peter (ed.) (2005). The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Cited by 10 | Google)
Abstract: This is the first volume of a projected three-volume set on the subject of innateness. The extent to which the mind is innate is one of the central questions in the human sciences, with important implications for many surrounding debates. By bringing together the top nativist scholars in philosophy, psychology, and allied disciplines these volumes provide a comprehensive assessment of nativist thought and a definitive reference point for future nativist inquiry. The Innate Mind: Structure and Content, concerns the fundamental architecture of the mind, addressing such question as: What capacities, processes, representations, biases, and connections are innate? How do these innate elements feed into a story about the development of our mature cognitive capacities, and which of them are shared with other members of the animal kingdom? The editors have provided an introduction giving some of the background to debates about innateness and introducing each of the subsequent essays, as well as a consolidated bibliography that will be a valuable reference resource for all those interested in this area. The volume will be of great importance to all researchers and students interested in the fundamental nature and powers of the human mind. Together, the three volumes in the series will provide the most intensive and richly cross-disciplinary investigation of nativism ever undertaken. They point the way toward a synthesis of nativist work that promises to provide a new understanding of our minds and their place in the natural order
Chomsky, Noam A. (1980). Discussion of Putnam's comments. In Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini (ed.), Language and Learning: The Debate Between Jean Piaget and Noam Chomsky. Harvard University Press.   (Cited by 15 | Google)
Chomsky, Noam A. (1969). Linguistics and philosophy. In Sidney Hook (ed.), Language and Philosophy. New York University Press.   (Cited by 24 | Annotation | Google)
Chomsky, Noam A. (1975). On cognitive capacity. In Reflections on Language. Pantheon Books.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Chomsky, Noam A. & Katz, Jerrold J. (1975). On innateness: A reply to Cooper. Philosophical Review 84 (January):70-87.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Chomsky, Noam A. (1967). Recent contributions to the theory of innate ideas. Synthese 17 (March):2-11.   (Cited by 25 | Google | More links)
Chomsky, Noam A. & Fodor, Jerry A. (1980). The inductivist fallacy. In Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini (ed.), Language and Learning: The Debate Between Jean Piaget and Noam Chomsky. Harvard University Press.   (Cited by 5 | Google)
Churchland, Patricia S. (1978). Fodor on language learning. Synthese 38 (May):149-59.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Clark, Andy (1993). Minimal rationalism. Mind 102 (408):587-610.   (Cited by 9 | Google | More links)
Collins, John M. (2003). Cowie on the poverty of stimulus. Synthese 136 (2):159-190.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   My paper defends the use of the poverty of stimulus argument (POSA) for linguistic nativism against Cowie's (1999) counter-claim that it leaves empiricism untouched. I first present the linguistic POSA as arising from a reflection on the generality of the child's initial state in comparison with the specific complexity of its final state. I then show that Cowie misconstrues the POSA as a direct argument about the character of the pld. In this light, I first argue that the data Cowie marshals about the pld does not begin to suggest that the POSA is unsound. Second, through a discussion of the so-called `auxiliary inversion rule', I show, by way of diagnosis, that Cowie misunderstands both the methodology of current linguistics and the complexity of the data it is obliged to explain
Collins, John M. (2005). Nativism: In defense of a biological understanding. Philosophical Psychology 18 (2):157-177.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In recent years, a number of philosophers have argued against a biological understanding of the innate in favor of a narrowly psychological notion. On the other hand, Ariew ((1996). Innateness and canalization. Philosophy of Science, 63, S19-S27. (1999). Innateness is canalization: in defense of a developmental account of innateness. In V. Hardcastle (Ed.), Where biology meets psychology: Philosophical essays (pp. 117-138). Cambridge, MA: MIT.) has developed a novel substantial account of innateness based on developmental biology: canalization. The governing thought of this paper is that the notion of the innate, as it re-emerged with the work of Chomsky, is a general notion that applies equally to all biological traits. On this basis, the paper recommends canalization as a promising candidate account of the notion of the innate
Collins, John M. (2006). Proxytypes and linguistic nativism. Synthese 153 (1):69-104.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Prinz (Perceptual the Mind: Concepts and Their Perceptual Basis, MIT Press, 2002) presents a new species of concept empiricism, under which concepts are off-line long-term memory networks of representations that are ‘copies’ of perceptual representations – proxytypes. An apparent obstacle to any such empiricism is the prevailing nativism of generative linguistics. The paper critically assesses Prinz’s attempt to overcome this obstacle. The paper argues that, prima facie, proxytypes are as incapable of accounting for the structure of the linguistic mind as are the more traditional species of empiricism. This position is then confirmed by looking in detail at two suggestions (one derived from recent connectionist research) from Prinz of how certain aspects of syntactic structure might be accommodated by the proxytype theory. It is shown that the suggestions fail to come to terms with both the data and theory of contemporary linguistics
Cowie, Fiona (1998). Mad dog nativism. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 49 (2):227-252.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In his recent book, Concepts: Where Cognitive Science Went Wrong, Jerry Fodor retracts the radical concept-nativism he once defended. Yet that postion stood, virtually unchallenged, for more than twenty years. This neglect is puzzling, as Fodor's arguments against concepts being learnable from experience remain unanswered, and nativism has historically been taken very seriously as a response to empiricism's perceived shortcomings. In this paper, I urge that Fodorean nativism should indeed be rejected. I argue, however, that its deficiencies are not so obvious that they can simply be taken for granted. Fodor can counter extant objections by stressing two distinctions: between historicist and counterfactual semantic theories and between explaining reference and explaining concept-acquisition. But, I argue, this victory is pyrrhic. Reformulated as objections to his account qua theory of concept-acquisition, and not qua theory of reference, analogous difficulties are fatal to the Fodorean position
Cowie, Fiona (2001). On cussing in church: In defense of what's within? Mind and Language 16 (2):231-245.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Cowie, Fiona (1997). The logical problem of language acquisition. Synthese 111 (1):17-51.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Arguments from the Logical Problem of Language Acquisition suggest that since linguistic experience provides few negative data that would falsify overgeneral grammatical hypotheses, innate knowledge of the principles of Universal Grammar must constrain learners hypothesis formulation. Although this argument indicates a need for domain-specific constraints, it does not support their innateness. Learning from mostly positive data proceeds unproblematically in virtually all domains. Since not every domain can plausibly be accorded its own special faculty, the probative value of the argument in the linguistic case is dubious. In ignoring the holistic and probablistic nature of theory construction, the argument underestimates the extent to which positive data can supply negative evidence and hence overestimates the intractability of language learning in the absence of a dedicated faculty. While nativism about language remains compelling, the alleged Logical Problem contributes nothing to its plausibility and the emphasis on the Problem in the recent acquisition literature has been a mistake
Cowie, Fiona (1998). What's Within? Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 113 | Google | More links)
Crain, Stephen; Gualmini, Andrea & Pietroski, Paul M. (2005). Brass tacks in linguistic theory: Innate grammatical principles. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Cited by 11 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In the normal course of events, children manifest linguistic competence equivalent to that of adults in just a few years. Children can produce and understand novel sentences, they can judge that certain strings of words are true or false, and so on. Yet experience appears to dramatically underdetermine the com- petence children so rapidly achieve, even given optimistic assumptions about children’s nonlinguistic capacities to extract information and form generalizations on the basis of statistical regularities in the input. These considerations underlie various (more specific) poverty of stimulus arguments for the innate specification of linguistic principles. But in our view, certain features of nativist arguments have not yet been fully appreciated. We focus here on three (related) kinds of poverty of stimulus argument, each of which has been supported by the findings of psycholinguistic investigations of child language
Crain, Stephen & Pietroski, Paul M. (2005). Innate Ideas. In James A. McGilvray (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Chomsky. Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Abstract: We think this is Chomsky's view, and also the view he finds in certain historical figures who participated in debates about innate ideas. Chomsky's contribution to the traditional debate lies in (i) his articulation and defense of a detailed nativist program in linguistics, showing _how_ experience plays only a restricted role in a broadly rationalist account of the acquisition of linguistic knowledge, and (ii) the framework this program suggests, given its empirical success, for the more general study of human cognition. Linguistics -- where this includes not just the study of expressions and their properties, but also related work in psycholinguistics -- provides a case study of how to investigate _which aspects of_ human thought are due largely to human nature. Earlier chapters have addressed (i). We'll try to give the flavor of (ii) by discussing some historically important examples, and then by reviewing some recent discoveries, inspired by the Chomskian approach to human psychology, about the properties of linguistic expressions that have a direct bearing on logical reasoning.
Crain, Stephen & Pietroski, Paul M. (2002). Why language acquisition is a snap. Linguistic Review.   (Cited by 29 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Nativists inspired by Chomsky are apt to provide arguments with the following general form: languages exhibit interesting generalizations that are not suggested by casual (or even intensive) examination of what people actually say; correspondingly, adults (i.e., just about anyone above the age of four) know much more about language than they could plausibly have learned on the basis of their experience; so absent an alternative account of the relevant generalizations and speakers' (tacit) knowledge of them, one should conclude that there are substantive "universal" principles of human grammar and, as a result of human biology, children can only acquire languages that conform to these principles. According to Pullum and Scholz, linguists need not suppose that children are innately endowed with "specific contingent facts about natural languages." But Pullum and Scholz don't consider the kinds of facts that really impress nativists. Nor do they offer any plausible acquisition scenarios that would culminate in the acquisition of languages that exhibit the kinds of rich and interrelated generalizations that are exhibited by natural languages. As we stress, good poverty-of-stimulus arguments are based on specific principles - - confirmed by drawing on (negative and crosslinguistic) data unavailable to children -- that help explain a range of independently established linguistic phenomena. If subsequent psycholinguistic experiments show that very young children already know such principles, that strengthens the case for nativism; and if further investigation shows that children sometimes "try out" constructions that are unattested in the local language, but only if such constructions are attested in other human languages, then the case for nativism is made stronger still. We illustrate these points by considering an apparently disparate -- but upon closer inspection, interestingly related -- cluster of phenomena involving: negative polarity items, the interpretation of 'or', binding theory, and displays of Romance and Germanic constructions in child- English..
Cummins, Denise D.; Cummins, Robert E. & Poirier, Pierre (2003). Cognitive evolutionary psychology without representational nativism. Journal Of Experimental and Theoretical Artificial Intelligence 15 (2):143-159.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract: A viable evolutionary cognitive psychology requires that specific cognitive capacities be (a) heritable and (b) ‘quasi-independent’ from other heritable traits. They must be heritable because there can be no selection for traits that are not. They must be quasi-independent from other heritable traits, since adaptive variations in a specific cognitive capacity could have no distinctive consequences for fitness if effecting those variations required widespread changes in other unrelated traits and capacities as well. These requirements would be satisfied by innate cognitive modules, as the dominant paradigm in evolutionary cognitive psychology assumes. However, those requirements would also be satisfied by heritable learning biases, perhaps in the form of architec- tural or chronotopic constraints, that operated to increase the canalization of specific cognitive capacities in the ancestral environment (Cummins and Cummins 1999). As an organism develops, cognitive capacities that are highly canalized as the result of heritable learning biases might result in an organism that is behaviourally quite similar to an organism whose innate modules come on line as the result of various environ- mental triggers. Taking this possibility seriously is increasingly important as the case against innate cognitive modules becomes increasingly strong
Cummins, Denise D. (1996). Evidence for the innateness of deontic reasoning. Mind and Language 11 (2):160-90.   (Cited by 54 | Google | More links)
de Rosa, Raffaella (2004). Locke's essay book I: The question-begging status of the anti-nativist arguments. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 69 (1):37-64.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
de Rosa, Raffaella (2000). On Fodor's claim that classical empiricists and rationalists agree on the innateness of ideas. Protosociology 14:240-269.   (Google)
Dwyer, Susan (2006). How good is the linguistic analogy? In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition.   (Cited by 11 | Google)
Falkenstein, Lorne (2004). Nativism and the nature of thought in Reid's account of our knowledge of the external world. In The Cambridge Companion to Thomas Reid. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Fitzpatrick, Simon (online). Nativism, empiricism and ockham's razor.   (Google)
Fodor, Jerry A. (2001). Doing without what's within: Fiona Cowie's critique of nativism. Mind 110 (437):99-148.   (Cited by 33 | Google | More links)
Fodor, Jerry A. (1980). On the impossibility of acquiring 'more powerful' structures. In Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini (ed.), Language and Learning: The Debate Between Jean Piaget and Noam Chomsky. Harvard University Press.   (Cited by 16 | Google)
Fodor, Jerry A. (1980). Reply to Putnam. In Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini (ed.), Language and Learning: The Debate Between Jean Piaget and Noam Chomsky. Harvard University Press.   (Google)
Fodor, Jerry A. (1981). The present status of the innateness controversy. In Representations. MIT Press.   (Cited by 117 | Annotation | Google)
Fodor, Jerry A.; Bever, Thomas G. & Garrett, Mary (1974). The specificity of language skills. In The Psychology of Language. McGraw-Hill.   (Google)
Green, Christopher D. & Vervaeke, John (1997). But what have you done for us lately?: Some recent perspectives on linguistic nativism. In David Martel Johnson & Christina E. Erneling (eds.), The Future of the Cognitive Revolution, Chapter 11. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The problem with many contemporary criticisms of Chomsky and linguistic nativism is that they are based upon features of the theory that are no longer germane; aspects that have either been superseded by more adequate proposals, or that have been dropped altogether under the weight of contravening evidence. In this paper, rather than rehashing old debates that are voluminously documented elsewhere, we intend to focus on more recent developments. To this end, we have put a premium on references from the 1990s and the latter half of the 1980s. First, we will describe exactly what is now thought to be innate about language, and why it is thought to be innate rather than learned. Second, we will examine the evidence that many people take to be the greatest challenge to the nativist claim: ape language. Third, we will briefly consider how an innate language organ might have evolved. Fourth we will look at how an organism might communicate without benefit of the innate language structure proposed by Chomsky, and examine a number of cases in which this seems to be happening. Finally we will try to sum up our claims and characterize what we believe will be the most fruitful course of debate for the immediate future
Griffiths, Paul; Machery, Edouard & Linquist, Stefan (2009). The vernacular concept of innateness. Mind and Language 24 (5):605-630.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: The proposal that the concept of innateness expresses a 'folk biological' theory of the 'inner natures' of organisms was tested by examining the response of biologically naive participants to a series of realistic scenarios concerning the development of birdsong. Our results explain the intuitive appeal of existing philosophical analyses of the innateness concept. They simultaneously explain why these analyses are subject to compelling counterexamples. We argue that this explanation undermines the appeal of these analyses, whether understood as analyses of the vernacular concept or as explications of that concept for the purposes of science
Griffiths, Paul (2002). What is innateness? The Monist 85 (1):70-85.   (Cited by 33 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In behavioral ecology some authors regard the innateness concept as irretrievably confused whilst others take it to refer to adaptations. In cognitive psychology, however, whether traits are 'innate' is regarded as a significant question and is often the subject of heated debate. Several philosophers have tried to define innateness with the intention of making sense of its use in cognitive psychology. In contrast, I argue that the concept is irretrievably confused. The vernacular innateness concept represents a key aspect of 'folkbiology', namely, the explanatory strategy that psychologists and cognitive anthropologists have labeled 'folk essentialism'. Folk essentialism is inimical to Darwinism, and both Darwin and the founders of the modern synthesis struggled to overcome this way of thinking about living systems. Because the vernacular concept of innateness is part of folkbiology, attempts to define it more adequately are unlikely to succeed, making it preferable to introduce new, neutral terms for the various, related notions that are needed to understand cognitive development
Gross, Steven (2001). Review of What's Within? Nativism Reconsidered. Philosophical Review 110 (1):91-94.   (Google)
Abstract: Fiona Cowie’s _What’s Within_ consists of three parts. In the first, she examines the early modern rationalist- empiricist debate over nativism, isolating what she considers the two substantive “strands” (67)1 that truly separated them: whether there exist domain-specific learning mechanisms, and whether concept acquisition is amenable to naturalistic explanation. She then turns, in the book’s succeeding parts, to where things stand today with these issues. The second part argues that Jerry Fodor’s view of concepts is continuous with traditional nativism in that it precludes a naturalistic story of concept acquisition. Cowie objects, however, to Fodor’s path to this conclusion and thus sees no reason to endorse it. The third part assesses Chomskyan nativism as a contemporary instance of positing domain- specific learning mechanisms. Though she is highly critical of how “poverty of the stimulus” arguments and the like have been used to lend credence to stronger conclusions, she holds that such arguments do indeed support the nativist’s domain-specificity claim. Cowie’s reconsideration of nativism thus limits itself to concepts and language (a few exceptions aside: there are two brief forays into face recognition and a mention of pathogen response). The terrain she does cover, however, is vast; and Cowie’s illuminating discussions will stimulate anyone interested in the area. As I focus on a few large-scale qualms in what follows, let me mention in particular that much of what is of interest in Cowie’s book is to be found in her detailed consideration of specific arguments
Harman, Gilbert (1969). Linguistic competence and empiricism. In Sidney Hook (ed.), Language and Philosophy. New York University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Horner, Jack K. (1976). Putnam's complaint. Auslegung 3 (June):166-173.   (Google)
Houng, Yu-Houng H. (1995). Learning and innate structure. In Mind and Cognition. Taipei: Inst Euro-Amer Stud.   (Google)
Hurford, Jim (ms). Functional innateness: Explaining the critical period for language acquisition.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In recent years, several explanations have been offered for the critical period in language acquisition, itself, a priori a somewhat surprising phenomenon. Two such explanations are considered here. Both studies use computer simulations, but the factors they model are very different. Hurford (1991) simulates the phylogenetic evolution over hundreds of generations of a species in which the timing of life history traits is under genetic control. The period when an individual is most proficient at language acquisition is just such a life history trait, and is capable of adaptive evolution. Evolutionary simulations lead to a concentration of language acquisition proficiency in the period up to puberty, with a subsequent tailing off. Elman (1993) demonstrates `the advantages of starting small' in neural networks learning mini-languages with many of the complex interacting grammatical factors found in real languages. A neural network which starts mature, with a full adult `working memory' cannot acquire such complex grammatical competence, whereas a net whose attention span is initially limited and then grows with maturation can acquire the appropriate grammar. This explains, in adaptive terms, the existence of a period in which an organism's characteristics, relevant to the language learning task, change, increasing a certain capacity (`working memory') from an immature to an adult value. These accounts are complementary and mutually compatible. An evolutionary account is proposed, in which genetically controlled `working memory' size in relation to life history is the variable operated on by natural selection. This account promises to produce a more detailed explanation of the critical period, which can be related to a wider range of data, including the coincidence with puberty and the involvement of sentence processing in language acquisition The relationships between Elman's `working memory' and the distinct psychological concept of working memory are also explored
Johnson, Kent (2004). Gold's theorem and cognitive science. Philosophy of Science 70 (4):571-592.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract: A variety of inaccurate claims about Gold's Theorem have appeared in the cognitive science literature. I begin by characterizing the logic of this theorem and its proof. I then examine several claims about Gold's Theorem, and I show why they are false. Finally, I assess the significance of Gold's Theorem for cognitive science
Karmiloff-Smith, Annette; Plunkett, Kim & Johnson, Mark H. (1998). What does it mean to claim that something is 'innate'? Response to Clark, Harris, Lightfoot and Samuels. Mind and Language 13 (4):588-597.   (Cited by 32 | Google | More links)
Katz, J. M. (1966). Innate ideas. In The Philosophy of Language. Harper & Row.   (Cited by 1 | Annotation | Google)
Katz, J. M. (2000). Realistic Rationalism. MIT Press.   (Cited by 42 | Google)
Abstract: Jerrold Katz develops a new philosophical position integrating realism and rationalism.
Kaye, Lawrence J. (1993). Are most of our concepts innate? Synthese 2 (2):187-217.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Fodor has argued that, because concept acquisition relies on the use of concepts already possessed by the learner, all concepts that cannot be definitionally reduced are innate. Since very few reductive definitions are available, it appears that most concepts are innate. After noting the reasons why we find such radical concept nativism implausible, I explicate Fodor's argument, showing that anyone who is committed to mentalistic explanation should take it seriously. Three attempts at avoiding the conclusion are examined and found to be unsuccessful. I then present an alternative way around Fodor's nativism; I maintain that concepts at a given level of explanation can be semantically primitive, yet at least partially acquired if some of the conditions at a lower level of explanation that are responsible for the concept's presence are themselves acquired
Keil, Frank (online). Nurturing nativism.   (Google)
Abstract: empiricist approaches to knowledge acquisition. I say " appears" because so often the debaters seem to be talking past each other, arguing about different things or misunderstanding each other in such basic ways that the debates can seem to an observer as incoherent. For these reasons there has been a powerful need for a systematic treatment of the different senses of nativism and empiricism that considers both their historical contexts and their current manifestations. Cowie's book offers such a treatment, one that goes far beyond prior attempts. It is a remarkably clear and insightful exposition and critique of nativist views from earliest writings to the most current debates. It helps all of us understand better what others are talking about when they don't subscribe to our brand of nativism or empiricism. It also reveals just how much theoretical and empirical work needs to be done before we can get a clear handle what is really the truth about the innateness of language, mathematics, folks psychology, and many other potential domains. Yet, despite these powerful virtues, the book also falls short on some key issues that seem necessary to laying an agenda for future empirical or theoretical work on nativism. I will tend to focus in this essay on those missing links, while also repeatedly stating that this book represents a major leap forward in making sense of what it means to say that some aspect of the mind is innate. Mystery and Modularity
Khalidi, Muhammad Ali (2001). Innateness and domain-specificity. Philosophical Studies 105 (2):191-210.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   There is a widespread assumption in cognitive science that there is anintrinsic link between the phenomena of innateness and domainspecificity. Many authors seem to hold that given the properties ofthese two phenomena, it follows that innate mental states aredomain-specific, or that domain-specific states are innate. My aim inthis paper is to argue that there are no convincing grounds forasserting either claim. After introducing the notions of innateness anddomain specificity, I consider some possible arguments for theconclusion that innate cognitive states are domain-specific, or viceversa. Having shown that these arguments do not succeed, I attempt toexplicate what I take to be the connection between innateness and domainspecificity. I argue that it is simply easier to determine whether andto what extent domain-specific cognitive capacities are innate. That is,the relation between innateness and domain specificity is evidential orepistemic, rather than intrinsic
Khalidi, Muhammad Ali (2007). Innate cognitive capacities. Mind and Language 22 (1):92-115.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper attempts to articulate a dispositional account of innateness that applies to cognitive capacities. After criticizing an alternative account of innateness proposed by Cowie (1999) and Samuels (2002), the dispositional account of innateness is explicated and defended against a number of objections. The dispositional account states that an innate cognitive capacity (output) is one that has a tendency to be triggered as a result of impoverished environmental conditions (input). Hence, the challenge is to demonstrate how the input can be compared to the output and shown to be relatively impoverished. I argue that there are robust methods of comparing input to output without measuring them quantitatively
Khalidi, Muhammad Ali (2002). Nature and nurture in cognition. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 53 (2):251-272.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper advocates a dispositional account of innate cognitive capacities, which has an illustrious history from Plato to Chomsky. The ?triggering model? of innateness, first made explicit by Stich ([1975]), explicates the notion in terms of the relative informational content of the stimulus (input) and the competence (output). The advantage of this model of innateness is that it does not make a problematic reference to normal conditions and avoids relativizing innate traits to specific populations, as biological models of innateness are forced to do. Relativization can be avoided in the case of cognitive capacities precisely because informational content is involved. Even though one cannot measure output relative to input in a precise way, there are indirect and approximate ways of assessing the degree of innateness of a specific cognitive capacity. 1 Introduction 2 Two models of innateness 3 Discarding the disease model 4 Impoverishment and implasticity 5 Measuring poverty 6 Assessing innateness
Kitcher, Philip S. (1978). The nativist's dilemma. Philosophical Quarterly 28 (January):1-16.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Laurence, Stephen & Margolis, Eric (2003). Radical concept nativism. Cognition 86:25-55.   (Cited by 19 | Google | More links)
Lee-Lampshire, Wendy (1998). The foundation walls that are carried by the house: A critique of the poverty of stimulus thesis and a Wittgensteinian-Dennettian alternative. Journal of Mind and Behavior 19 (2):177-193.   (Google)
Machery, Eduoard; Griffiths, Paul & Linquist, Stefan (online). The vernacular concept of innateness.   (Google)
Abstract: ‘inner natures’ of organisms was tested by examining the response of biologically naive participants to a series of realistic scenarios concerning the development of birdsong. Our results explain the intuitive appeal of existing philosophical analyses of the innateness concept. They simultaneously explain why these analyses are subject to compelling counterexamples. We argue that this explanation undermines the appeal of these analyses, whether understood as analyses of the vernacular concept or as explications of that concept for the purposes of science
Macdonald, Cynthia (1990). What is empiricism?--, Nativism, naturalism, and evolutionary theory. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 81:81-92.   (Google)
Mameli, Matteo & Bateson, Patrick (2006). Innateness and the sciences. Biology and Philosophy 21 (2):155-188.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The concept of innateness is a part of folk wisdom but is also used by biologists and cognitive scientists. This concept has a legitimate role to play in science only if the colloquial usage relates to a coherent body of evidence. We examine many different candidates for the post of scientific successor of the folk concept of innateness. We argue that none of these candidates is entirely satisfactory. Some of the candidates are more interesting and useful than others, but the interesting candidates are not equivalent to each other and the empirical and evidential relations between them are far from clear. Researchers have treated the various scientific notions that capture some aspect of the folk concept of innateness as equivalent to each other or at least as tracking properties that are strongly correlated with each other. But whether these correlations exist is an empirical issue. This empirical issue has not been thoroughly investigated because in the attempt to create a bridge between the folk view and their theories, researchers have often assumed that the properties must somehow cluster. Rather than making further attempts to import the folk concept of innateness into the sciences, efforts should now be made to focus on the empirical questions raised by the debates and pave the way to a better way of studying the development of living organisms. Such empirical questions must be answered before it can be decided whether a good scientific successor – in the form of a concept that refers to a collection of biologically significant properties that tend to co-occur – can be identified or whether the concept of innateness deserves no place in science
Mameli, Matteo & Papineau, David (2006). The new nativism: A commentary on Gary Marcus's The Birth of the Mind. Biology and Philosophy 21 (4):559-573.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Gary Marcus has written a very interesting book about mental development from a nativist perspective. For the general readership at which the book is largely aimed, it will be interesting because of its many informative examples of the development of cognitive structures and because of its illuminating explanations of ways in which genes can contribute to these developmental processes. However, the book is also interesting from a theoretical point of view. Marcus tries to make nativism compatible with the central arguments that anti-nativists use to attack nativism and with many recent discoveries about genetic activity and brain development. In so doing, he reconfigures the nativist position to a considerable extent
Marcus, Gary F. (2004). Birth of the Mind: How a Tiny Number of Genes Creates the Complexity of Human Thought. Basic Books.   (Cited by 84 | Google | More links)
Marcus, Gary F. (2005). What developmental biology can tell us about innateness. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Matthews, Robert J. (2001). Cowie's anti-nativism. Mind and Language 16 (2):215-230.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Matthews, Robert J. (2006). The case for linguistic nativism. In Robert J. Stainton (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Cognitive Science. Malden MA: Blackwell Publishing.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
McGilvray, James A. (2006). On the innateness of language. In Robert J. Stainton (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Cognitive Science. Malden MA: Blackwell Publishing.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Mehler, Jacques & Fox, R. (eds.) (1985). Neonate Cognition: Beyond the Blooming Buzzing Confusion. Lawrence Erlbaum.   (Cited by 21 | Google)
Moutoussis, K.; Maier, Alexander; Zeki, Semir & Logothetis, Nikos K. (2005). Seeing invisible motion: Responses of area v5 neurons in the awake-behaving macaque. Soc. For Neurosci. Abstr 390 (11).   (Google)
Abstract: Moutoussis, K., A. Maier, S. Zeki and N. K. Logothetis: Seeing invisible motion: responses of area V5 neurons in the awake-behaving macaque. Soc. for Neurosci. Abstr. 390.11, 1 (11 2005) Abstract
Nichols, Shaun (2005). Innateness and moral psychology. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Although linguistic nativism has received the bulk of attention in contemporary innateness debates, moral nativism has perhaps an even deeper ancestry. If linguistic nativism is Cartesian, moral nativism is Platonic. Moral nativism has taken a backseat to linguistic nativism in contemporary discussions largely because Chomsky made a case for linguistic nativism characterized by unprecedented rigor. Hence it is not surprising that recent attempts to revive the thesis that we have innate moral knowledge have drawn on Chomsky’s framework. I’ll argue, however, that the recent attempts to use Chomsky-style arguments in support of innate moral knowledge are uniformly unconvincing. The central argument in the Chomskian arsenal, of course, is the Poverty of the Stimulus (POS) argument. In section 1, I will set out the basic form of the POS argument and the conclusions about domain specificity and innate propositional knowledge that are supposed to follow. In section 2, I’ll distinguish 3 hypotheses about innateness and morality: rule nativism, moral principle nativism, and moral judgment nativism. In sections 3-5 I’ll then consider each of these hypotheses in turn. I’ll argue that while there is some reason to favor rule nativism, the arguments that moral principles and moral judgment derive from innate moral knowledge don’t work. The capacity for moral judgment is better explained by appeal to innate affective systems rather than innate moral knowledge. In the final section, I’ll suggest that the role of such affective mechanisms in structuring the mind complicates the standard picture about poverty of the stimulus arguments and nativism. For the affective mechanisms that influence cognitive structures can make contributions that are neither domain general nor domain specific
Piattelli-Palmarini, Massimo (1989). Evolution, selection, and cognition: From learning to parameter setting in biology and in the study of language. Cognition 31:1-44.   (Cited by 112 | Annotation | Google)
Piattelli-Palmarini, Massimo (ed.) (1980). Language and Learning: The Debate Between Jean Piaget and Noam Chomsky. Harvard University Press.   (Cited by 181 | Annotation | Google)
Piattelli-Palmarini, Massimo (1986). The rise of selective theories: A case study and some lessons from immunology. In William Demopoulos (ed.), Language Learning and Concept Acquisition. Ablex.   (Cited by 10 | Google)
Pietroski, Paul M. & Crain, Stephen (2005). Innate ideas. In James A. McGilvray (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Chomsky. Cambridge.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Pitt, David (2000). Nativism and the theory of content. Protosociology 14:222-239.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Prinz, Jesse J. (2009). Against moral nativism. In Dominic Murphy & Michael A. Bishop (eds.), Stich and His Critics. Wiley-Blackwell.   (Google)
Pullum, Geoffrey K. (2002). Empirical assessment of stimulus poverty arguments. Linguistic Review.   (Cited by 106 | Google | More links)
Putnam, Hilary (1980). Comments on Chomsky's and Fodor's replies. In Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini (ed.), Language and Learning: The Debate Between Jean Piaget and Noam Chomsky. Harvard University Press.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Putnam, Hilary (1967). The 'innateness hypothesis' and explanatory models in linguistics. Synthese 17 (March):12-22.   (Cited by 34 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Putnam, Hilary (1980). What is innate and why. In Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini (ed.), Language and Learning: The Debate Between Jean Piaget and Noam Chomsky. Harvard University Press.   (Cited by 17 | Google)
Quartz, S. (2003). Innateness and the brain. Biology and Philosophy 18 (1):13-40.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   The philosophical innateness debate has long relied onpsychological evidence. For a century, however, a parallel debate hastaken place within neuroscience. In this paper, I consider theimplications of this neuroscience debate for the philosophicalinnateness debate. By combining the tools of theoretical neurobiologyand learning theory, I introduce the ``problem of development'' that alladaptive systems must solve, and suggest how responses to this problemcan demarcate a number of innateness proposals. From this perspective, Isuggest that the majority of natural systems are in fact innate. Lastly,I consider the acquistion strategies implemented by the human brain andsuggest that there is a rigorous way of characterizing these ``neuralconstructivist'' strategies as not being strongly innate. Alternatives toinnateness are thus both rigorously definable and empirically supported
Ramsey, William & Stich, Stephen P. (1990). Connectionism and three levels of nativism. Synthese 82 (2):177-205.   (Cited by 14 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Along with the increasing popularity of connectionist language models has come a number of provocative suggestions about the challenge these models present to Chomsky's arguments for nativism. The aim of this paper is to assess these claims. We begin by reconstructing Chomsky's argument from the poverty of the stimulus and arguing that it is best understood as three related arguments, with increasingly strong conclusions. Next, we provide a brief introduction to connectionism and give a quick survey of recent efforts to develop networks that model various aspects of human linguistic behavior. Finally, we explore the implications of this research for Chomsky's arguments. Our claim is that the relation between connectionism and Chomsky's views on innate knowledge is more complicated than many have assumed, and that even if these models enjoy considerable success the threat they pose for linguistic nativism is small
Rozin, Paul (2006). About 17 potential principles about links between the innate mind and culture: Preadaptation, predispositions, preferences, pathways, and domains. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition.   (Google)
Rupert, Robert D. (2009). Innateness and the situated mind. In P. Robbins & M. Aydede (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Situated Cognition. Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Abstract: forthcoming in P. Robbins and M. Aydede (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Situated Cognition (Cambridge UP)
Samuels, Richard (2004). Innateness in cognitive science. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 8 (3):136-141.   (Cited by 13 | Google | More links)
Abstract: has a more specific role to play in the development of Of course, the conclusion to draw is not that innateness innate cognitive structure. In particular, a common claim claims are trivially false or that they cannot be character-
Samet, Jerry & Flanagan, Owen J. (1989). Innate representations. In Stuart Silvers (ed.), Rerepresentation. Kluwer.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Samuels, Richard (2002). Nativism in cognitive science. Mind and Language 17 (3):233-65.   (Cited by 36 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Though nativist hypotheses have played a pivotal role in the development of cognitive science, it remains exceedingly obscure how they—and the debates in which they figure—ought to be understood. The central aim of this paper is to provide an account which addresses this concern and in so doing: a) makes sense of the roles that nativist theorizing plays in cognitive science and, moreover, b), explains why it really matters to the contemporary study of cognition. I conclude by outlining a range of further implications of this account for current debate in cognitive science
Samet, Jerry (1986). Troubles with Fodor's nativism. Midwest Studies in Philosophy 10:575-594.   (Annotation | Google)
Samuels, Richard (1998). What brains won't tell us about the mind: A critique of the neurobiological argument against representational nativism. Mind and Language 13 (4):548-570.   (Cited by 12 | Google | More links)
Scholl, Brian J. (2005). Innateness and (bayesian) visual perception: Reconciling nativism and development. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Cited by 7 | Google)
Schwartz, Robert (1995). Is mathematical competence innate? Philosophy of Science 62 (2):227-40.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Scholz, Barbara C. & Pullum, Geoffrey K. (2006). Irrational nativist exuberance. In Robert J. Stainton (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Cognitive Science. Malden MA: Blackwell Publishing.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Segal, Gabriel (ms). Poverty of stimulus arguments concerning language and folk psychology.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: This paper is principally devoted to comparing and contrasting poverty of stimulus arguments for innate cognitive apparatus in relation to language and in relation to folk psychology. These days one is no longer allowed to use the term ‘innate’ without saying what one means by it. So I will begin by saying what I mean by ‘innate’. Sections 2 and 3 will discuss language and theory of mind, respectively. Along the way, I will also briefly discuss other arguments for innate cognitive apparatus in these areas
Simpson, Tom; Carruthers, Peter; Laurence, Stephen & amp, amp (2005). Introduction: Nativism past and present. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Cited by 34 | Google | More links)
Simpson, Tom (2005). Toward a reasonable nativism. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Google)
Sterelny, Kim (1989). Fodor's nativism. Philosophical Studies 55 (February):119-41.   (Cited by 12 | Google | More links)
Stich, Stephen P. (1979). Between chomskian rationalism and Popperian empiricism. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 30 (December):329-47.   (Cited by 4 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Stich, Stephen P. (ed.) (1975). Innate Ideas. University of California Press.   (Cited by 21 | Google)
Tooby, John; Cosmides, Leda & Barrett, H. Clark (2005). Resolving the debate on innate ideas: Learnability constraints and the evolved interpenetration of motivational and conceptual functions. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In P. Carruthers, S. Laurence, & S. Stich (Eds.). The innate mind: Structure and content. (pp. 305-337). New York: Oxford University Press
Viger, Christopher D. (2005). Learning to think: A response to the language of thought argument for innateness. Mind and Language 20 (3):313-25.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Jerry Fodor's argument for an innate language of thought continues to be a hurdle for researchers arguing that natural languages provide us with richer conceptual systems than our innate cognitive resources. I argue that because the logical/formal terms of natural languages are given a usetheory of meaning, unlike predicates, logical/formal terms might be learned without a mediating internal representation. In that case, our innate representational system might have less logical structure than a natural language, making it possible that we augment our innate representational system and improve our ability to think by learning a natural language
Wasow, Thomas (1973). The innateness hypothesis and grammatical relations. Synthese 26 (October):38-52.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Weinberg, Jonathan M. & Mallon, Ron (2006). Innateness as closed process invariance. Philosophy of Science 73:323–344.   (Google)
Abstract: Controversies over the innateness of cognitive processes, mechanisms, and structures play a persistent role in driving research in philosophy as well as the cognitive sciences, but the appropriate way to understand the category of the innate remains subject to dispute. One venerable approach in philosophy and cognitive science merely contrasts innate features with those that are learned. In fact, Jerry Fodor has recently suggested that this remains our best handle on innateness
Wendler, David (1996). Innateness as an explanatory concept. Biology and Philosophy 11 (1):89-116.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Although many of the issues surrounding innateness have received a good deal of attention lately, the basic concept of token innateness has been largely ignored. In the present paper, I try to correct this imbalance by offering an account of the innateness of token traits. I begin by explaining Stephen Stich's account of token innateness and offering a counterexample to that account. I then clarify why the contemporary biological approaches to innateness will not be able to resolve the problems that beset Stich's account. From there, I develop an alternative understanding of the innateness of token traits, what I call a causal/explanatory account. The argument to be made is that token innateness is both a causal, and an explanatory, concept. After clarifying this understanding of innateness, and showing how it handles several counterexamples to other accounts, I end with some comments on what the causal/explanatory account suggests for our understanding of innateness in general

7.1a.1 Nativism in Cognitive Science, Misc

7.1b Modularity in Cognitive Science

Appelbaum, Irene (1998). Fodor, modularity, and speech perception. Philosophical Psychology 11 (3):317-330.   (Cited by 5 | Google)
Abstract: Fodor argues that speech perception is accomplished by a module. Typically, modular processing is taken to be bottom-up processing. Yet there is ubiquitous empirical evidence that speech perception is influenced by top-down processing. Fodor attempts to resolve this conflict by denying that modular processing must be exclusively bottom-up. It is argued, however, that Fodor's attempt to reconcile top-down and modular processing fails, because: (i) it undermines Fodor's own conception of modular processing; and (ii) it cannot account for the contextually varying top-down influences that characterize speech perception
Arbib, Michael A. (1989). Modularity, schemas and neurons: A critique of Fodor. In Peter Slezak (ed.), Computers, Brains and Minds. Kluwer.   (Annotation | Google)
Barrett, H. Clark (2005). Enzymatic computation and cognitive modularity. Mind and Language 20 (3):259-87.   (Cited by 27 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Currently, there is widespread skepticism that higher cognitive processes, given their apparent flexibility and globality, could be carried out by specialized computational devices, or modules. This skepticism is largely due to Fodor’s influential definition of modularity. From the rather flexible catalogue of possible modular features that Fodor originally proposed has emerged a widely held notion of modules as rigid, informationally encapsulated devices that accept highly local inputs and whose opera- tions are insensitive to context. It is a mistake, however, to equate such features with computational devices in general and therefore to assume, as Fodor does, that higher cognitive processes must be non-computational. Of the many possible non-Fodorean architectures, one is explored here that offers possible solutions to computational problems faced by conventional modular systems: an ‘enzymatic’ architecture. Enzymes are computational devices that use lock-and-key template matching to iden- tify relevant information (substrates), which is then operated upon and returned to a common pool for possible processing by other devices. Highly specialized enzymes can operate together in a common pool of information that is not pre-sorted by information type. Moreover, enzymes can use molecular ‘tags’ to regulate the operations of other devices and to change how particular substrates are construed and operated upon, allowing for highly interactive, context-specific processing. This model shows how specialized, modular processing can occur in an open system, and suggests that skepti- cism about modularity may largely be due to failure to consider alternatives to the standard model
Bennett, L. J. (1990). Modularity of mind revisited. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 41 (September):429-36.   (Cited by 1 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Bergeron, Vincent (2007). Anatomical and functional modularity in cognitive science: Shifting the focus. Philosophical Psychology 20 (2):175 – 195.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Much of cognitive science is committed to the modular approach to the study of cognition. The core of this approach consists of a pair of assumptions - the anatomical and the functional modularity assumptions - which motivate two kinds of inference: the anatomical and the functional modularity inferences. The legitimacy of both of these inferences has been strongly challenged, a situation that has had surprisingly little impact on most theorizing in the field. Following the introduction of an important, yet rarely made, distinction between two functional concepts - the distinction between cognitive working and cognitive role - this paper analyses these kinds of inference, and refocuses the attention on new aspects of their main limitations. It is argued that both the anatomical and functional modularity inferences can, and do, operate in three distinct modes in contemporary cognitive science, and that seeing this is essential to understanding both the power and the limitations of these methodological tools
Bergeron, Vincent & Matthen, Mohan (2008). Assembling the emotions. In Luc Faucher & Christine Tappolet (eds.), The Modularity of Emotions. University of Calgary Press.   (Google)
Abstract: In this article, we discuss the modularity of the emotions. In a general methodological section, we discuss the empirical basis for the postulation of modularity. Then we discuss how certain modules -- the emotions in particular -- decompose into distinct anatomical and functional parts.
Bickhard, Mark H. (2003). An integration of motivation and cognition. In L. Smith, C. Rogers & P. Tomlinson (eds.), Development and Motivation: Joint Perspectives. Leicester: British Psychological Society.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Browne, Derek (1996). Cognitive versatility. Minds and Machines 6 (4):507-23.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Jerry Fodor divides the mind into peripheral, domain-specific modules and a domaingeneral faculty of central cognition. John Tooby and Lisa Cosmides argue instead that the mind is modular all the way through; cognition consists of a multitude of domain-specific processes. But human thought has a flexible, innovative character that contrasts with the inflexible, stereotyped performances of modular systems. My goal is to discover how minds that are constructed on modular principles might come to exhibit cognitive versatility.Cognitive versatility is exhibited in the ability to learn from experience. How can this ability emerge from the resources made available by earlier stages of cognitive specialization without sacrificing the many benefits of modularization? A transition into versatile cognition occurred in the history of our species. A similar development which occurs within individual ontogeny provides clues about the phylogenetic changes
Buller, David J. (2005). Get over: Massive modularity. Biology and Philosophy 20 (4).   (Google | More links)
Cam, Philip (1988). Modularity, rationality, and higher cognition. Philosophical Studies 53 (March):279-94.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Carruthers, Peter (2008). An architecture for dual reasoning. In J. Evans & K. Frankish (eds.), In Two Minds: Dual Processes and Beyond. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: In J. Evans and K. Frankish (eds.), In Two Minds: dual processes and beyond. Oxford University Press, 2008. (In draft.)
Carruthers, Peter (2006). Distinctively human thinking: Modular precursors and components. In Peter Carruthers (ed.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Cited by 12 | Google)
Barrett, Clark H. (2005). Enzymatic computation and cognitive modularity. Mind and Language 20 (3):259-287.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Currently, there is widespread skepticism that higher cognitive processes, given their apparent flexibility and globality, could be carried out by specialized computational devices, or modules. This skepticism is largely due to Fodor’s influential definition of modularity. From the rather flexible catalogue of possible modular features that Fodor originally proposed has emerged a widely held notion of modules as rigid, informationally encapsulated devices that accept highly local inputs and whose opera- tions are insensitive to context. It is a mistake, however, to equate such features with computational devices in general and therefore to assume, as Fodor does, that higher cognitive processes must be non-computational. Of the many possible non-Fodorean architectures, one is explored here that offers possible solutions to computational problems faced by conventional modular systems: an ‘enzymatic’ architecture. Enzymes are computational devices that use lock-and-key template matching to iden- tify relevant information (substrates), which is then operated upon and returned to a common pool for possible processing by other devices. Highly specialized enzymes can operate together in a common pool of information that is not pre-sorted by information type. Moreover, enzymes can use molecular ‘tags’ to regulate the operations of other devices and to change how particular substrates are construed and operated upon, allowing for highly interactive, context-specific processing. This model shows how specialized, modular processing can occur in an open system, and suggests that skepti- cism about modularity may largely be due to failure to consider alternatives to the standard model
Carruthers, Peter (2003). Is the mind a system of modules shaped by natural selection? In Christopher R. Hitchcock (ed.), Contemporary Debates in the Philosophy of Science. Blackwell.   (Cited by 14 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This chapter defends the positive thesis which constitutes its title. It argues first, that the mind has been shaped by natural selection; and second, that the result of that shaping process is a modular mental architecture. The arguments presented are all broadly empirical in character, drawing on evidence provided by biologists, neuroscientists and psychologists (evolutionary, cognitive, and developmental), as well as by researchers in artificial intelligence. Yet the conclusion is at odds with the manifest image of ourselves provided both by introspection and by common-sense psychology. The chapter concludes by sketching how a modular architecture might be developed to account for the patently unconstrained character of human thought, which has served as an assumption in a number of recent philosophical attacks on mental modularity
Carruthers, Peter (2003). Moderately massive modularity. In Anthony O'Hear (ed.), Mind and Persons. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 12 | Google)
Abstract: This paper will sketch a model of the human mind according to which the mind’s structure is massively, but by no means wholly, modular. Modularity views in general will be motivated, elucidated, and defended, before the thesis of moderately massive modularity is explained and elaborated
Carruthers, Peter (2004). Practical reasoning in a modular mind. Mind and Language 19 (3):259-278.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   This paper starts from an assumption defended in the author's previous work. This is that distinctivelyhuman flexible and creative theoretical thinking can be explained in terms of the interactions of a variety of modular systems, with the addition of just a few amodular components and dispositions. On the basis of that assumption it is argued that distinctively human practical reasoning, too, can be understood in modular terms. The upshot is that there is nothing in the human psyche that requires any significant retreat from a thesis of massively modular mental organization
Carruthers, Peter (2006). Simple heuristics meet massive modularity. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This chapter investigates the extent to which claims of massive modular organization of the mind (espoused by some members of the evolutionary psychology research program) are consistent with the main elements of the simple heuristics research program. A number of potential sources of conflict between the two programs are investigated and defused. However, the simple heuristics program turns out to undermine one of the main arguments offered in support of massive modularity, at least as the latter is generally understood by philosophers. So one result of the argument will be to force us to re-examine the way in which the notion of modularity in cognitive science should best be characterized, if the thesis of massive modularity isn’t to be abandoned altogether. What is at stake in this discussion, is whether there is a well-motivated notion of ‘module’ such that we have good reason to think that the human mind must be massively modular in its organization. I shall be arguing (in the end) that there is
Carruthers, Peter (2006). The Architecture of the Mind: Massive Modularity and the Flexibility of Thought. Oxford: Clarendon Press.   (Cited by 13 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Peter Carruthers, a leading philosopher of mind, provides a comprehensive development and defense of one of the guiding assumptions of evolutionary psychology: that the human mind is composed of a large number of semi-independent modules. Written with unusual clarity and directness, and surveying an extensive range of research in cognitive science, it will be essential reading for anyone with an interest in the nature and organization of the mind
Carruthers, Peter (2006). The case for massively modular models of mind. In Robert J. Stainton (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Cognitive Science. Blackwell.   (Cited by 16 | Google | More links)
Abstract: My charge in this chapter is to set out the positive case supporting massively modular models of the human mind.1 Unfortunately, there is no generally accepted understanding of what a massively modular model of the mind is. So at least some of our discussion will have to be terminological. I shall begin by laying out the range of things that can be meant by ‘modularity’. I shall then adopt a pair of strategies. One will be to distinguish some things that ‘modularity’ definitely can’t mean, if the thesis of massive modularity is to be even remotely plausible. The other will be to look at some of the arguments that have been offered in support of massive modularity, discussing what notion of ‘module’ they might warrant. It will turn out that there is, indeed, a strong case in support of massively modular models of the mind on one reasonably natural understanding of ‘module’. But what really matters in the end, of course, is the substantive question of what sorts of structure are adequate to account for the organization and operations of the human mind, not whether or not the components appealed to in that account get described as ‘modules’. So the more interesting question before us is what the arguments that have been offered in support of massive modularity can succeed in showing us about those structures, whatever they get called
Chien, A. J. (1996). Why the mind may not be modular. Minds and Machines 6 (1):1-32.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Fodor argued that in contrast to input systems which are informationally encapsulated, general intelligence is unencapsulated and hence non-modular; for this reason, he suggested, prospects for understanding it are not bright. It is argued that an additional property, primitive functionality, is required for non-modularity. A functionally primitive computational model for quantifier scoping, limited to some scoping influences, is then motivated, and an implementation described. It is argued that only such a model can be faithful to intuitive scope preferences. But it is also argued that an extended model which includes all scoping influences is a hopeless prospect from a developmental perspective. Fodor's views are concluded to have some independent support: quantifier scoping is a mental ability parasitic on general intelligence that is non-modular though in a revised sense, warranting pessimism about our ability of model it
Clark Barrett, H. (2006). Modularity and design reincarnation. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition.   (Google)
Barrett, Clark H. & Kurzban, R. (2006). Modularity in cognition: Framing the debate. Psychological Review 113:628-647.   (Google)
Abstract: Modularity has been the subject of intense debate in the cognitive sciences for more than 2 decades. In some cases, misunderstandings have impeded conceptual progress. Here the authors identify arguments about modularity that either have been abandoned or were never held by proponents of modular views of the mind. The authors review arguments that purport to undermine modularity, with particular attention on cognitive architecture, development, genetics, and evolution. The authors propose that modularity, cleanly defined, provides a useful framework for directing research and resolving debates about individual cognitive systems and the nature of human evolved cognition. Modularity is a fundamental property of living things at every level of organization; it might prove indispensable for understanding the structure of the mind as well
Collins, John M. (2005). On the input problem for massive modularity. Minds and Machines 15 (1):1-22.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Jerry Fodor argues that the massive modularity thesis – the claim that (human) cognition is wholly served by domain specific, autonomous computational devices, i.e., modules – is a priori incoherent, self-defeating. The thesis suffers from what Fodor dubs the input problem: the function of a given module (proprietarily understood) in a wholly modular system presupposes non-modular processes. It will be argued that massive modularity suffers from no such a priori problem. Fodor, however, also offers what he describes as a really real input problem (i.e., an empirical one). It will be suggested that this problem is real enough, but it does not selectively strike down massive modularity – it is a problem for everyone
Cundall, Michael K. (2006). Rethinking the divide: Modules and central systems. Philosophia 34 (4).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In this paper I argue that the cognitive system is best viewed as a continuum of cognitive processing from modules to central systems rather than having these as discrete and wholly different modes of cognitive processing. I rely on recent evidence on the development of theory of mind (ToM) abilities and the developmental disorder of autism. I then turn to the phenomenology of modular processes. I show that modular outputs have a stronger force than non-modular or central system outputs. I then evaluate social cognitions and show them to occupy a middle ground with respect to phenomenal strength between modular and non-modular outputs. The evidence presented then seems to indicate a continuum of cognitive processing rather than the traditional division between modules and central systems
Currie, Gregory & Sterelny, Kim (2000). How to think about the modularity of mind-reading. Philosophical Quarterly 50 (199):145-160.   (Cited by 13 | Google | More links)
D. A. Leopold, N. K. Logothetis (1999). Multistable phenomena: Changing views in perception. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 3:254-264.   (Google)
Abstract: Traditional explanations of multistable visual phenomena (e.g. ambiguous figures, perceptual rivalry) suggest that the basis for spontaneous reversals in perception lies in antagonistic connectivity within the visual system. In this review, we suggest an alternative, albeit speculative. explanation for visual multistability - that spontaneous alternations reflect responses to active, programmed events initiated by brain areas that integrate sensory and non-sensory information to coordinate a diversity of behaviors. Much evidence suggests that perceptual reversals are themselves more closely related to the expression of a behavior than to passive sensory responses: (1) they are initiated spontaneously, often voluntarily, and are influenced by subjective variables such as attention and mood; (2) the alternation process is greatly facilitated with practice and compromised by lesions in non- visual cortical areas; (3) the alternation process has temporal dynamics similar to those of spontaneously initiated behaviors; (4) functional imaging reveals that brain areas associated with a variety of cognitive behaviors are specifically activated when vision becomes unstable. In this scheme, reorganizations of activity throughout the visual cortex, concurrent with perceptual reversals, are initiated by higher, largely non- sensory brain centers. Such direct intervention In the processing of the sensory input by brain structures associated with planning and motor programming might serve an important role in perceptual organization, particularly in aspects related to selective attention
Fodor, Jerry A. (1985). Precis of the modularity of mind. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 8:1-42.   (Cited by 99 | Annotation | Google)
Fodor, Jerry A. (2005). Reply to Steven Pinker So How Does the Mind Work?. Mind and Language 20 (1):25-32.   (Cited by 11 | Google | More links)
Fodor, Jerry A. (1983). The Modularity of Mind. MIT Press.   (Cited by 3608 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Fodor, Jerry A. (1986). The modularity of mind. In Zenon W. Pylyshyn (ed.), Meaning and Cognitive Structure. Ablex.   (Cited by -1775940 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Fodor, Jerry A. (1989). Why should the mind be modular? In A. George (ed.), Reflections on Chomsky. Blackwell.   (Cited by 11 | Google)
Garfield, Jay L. (ed.) (1987). Modularity in Knowledge Representation and Natural-Language Understanding. MIT Press.   (Cited by 56 | Annotation | Google)
Harnish, Robert M. (1995). Modularity and speech acts. Pragmatics and Cognition 3 (1):1-29.   (Google)
Hildebrandt, Helmut (1994). Organology and modularity: One piece of the mind or two? Philosophical Psychology 7 (1):21-38.   (Google)
Abstract: The conception of a modular structure of mind, which postulates that the mind is composed of more or less autonomous subsystems, is widespread in contemporary psychology. Proponents of a modular structure of the mind, such as Marshall (1980; 1984; 1985), Fodor (1983), Gardner (1983), and Shallice (1988), have linked their work to F. J. Gall's theory of organology or of the “functions of the brain”. This paper argues: (1) Gall's organology defends a view of the capacities of the mind that relies on a specific relation between the organism and its organs. The organs of Gall stem from and originate “needs” so that they embody not so much processing capacities, but perception-for-action cycles. (2) Modules and organs arise at different levels of description that cannot be easily matched. (3) It is just this central distinction between organs and modules which explains the inherent relation between organology, comparative biology and differential psychology on the one hand and modularity and cognitive science on the other
Jones, Karen (2006). Quick and Smart? Modularity and the pro-emotion consensus. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 32:3-27.   (Google)
K. Moutoussis, ; G. A. Keliris, ; Z. Kourtzi, & N. K. Logothetis, (2005). A binocular rivalry study of motion perception in the human brain. Vision Research 45 (17):2231-43.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The relationship between brain activity and conscious visual experience is central to our understanding of the neural mechanisms underlying perception. Binocular rivalry, where monocular stimuli compete for perceptual dominance, has been previously used to dissociate the constant stimulus from the varying percept. We report here fMRI results from humans experiencing binocular rivalry under a dichoptic stimulation paradigm that consisted of two drifting random dot patterns with different motion coherence. Each pattern had also a different color, which both enhanced rivalry and was used for reporting which of the two patterns was visible at each time. As the perception of the subjects alternated between coherent motion and motion noise, we examined the effect that these alternations had on the strength of the MR signal throughout the brain. Our results demonstrate that motion perception is able to modulate the activity of several of the visual areas which are known to be involved in motion processing. More specifically, in addition to area V5 which showed the strongest modulation, a higher activity during the perception of motion than during the perception of noise was also clearly observed in areas V3A and LOC, and less so in area V3. In previous studies, these areas had been selectively activated by motion stimuli but whether their activity reflects motion perception or not remained unclear; here we show that they are involved in motion perception as well. The present findings therefore suggest a lack of a clear distinction between ?processing? versus ?perceptual? areas in the brain, but rather that the areas involved in the processing of a specific visual attribute are also part of the neuronal network that is collectively responsible for its perceptual representation
Ludwig, Kirk & Schneider, Susan (2008). Fodor's challenge to the classical computational theory of mind. Mind and Language 23 (1):123–143.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In The Mind Doesn’t Work that Way, Jerry Fodor argues that mental representations have context sensitive features relevant to cognition, and that, therefore, the Classical Computational Theory of Mind (CTM) is mistaken. We call this the Globality Argument. This is an in principle argument against CTM. We argue that it is self-defeating. We consider an alternative argument constructed from materials in the discussion, which avoids the pitfalls of the official argument. We argue that it is also unsound and that, while it is an empirical issue whether context sensitive features of mental representations are relevant to cognition, it is empirically implausible
Lyons, Jack C. (2001). Carving the mind at its (not necessarily modular) joints. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 52 (2).   (Google)
Abstract: The cognitive enuropsychological understanding of a cognitive system is roughly that of a ‘mental organ’, which is independent of other systems, specializes in some cognitive task, and exhibits a certain kind of internal cohesiveness. This is all quite vague, and I try to make it more precise. A more precise understanding of cognitive systems will make it possible to articulate in some detail an alternative to the Fodorian doctrine of modularity (since not all cognitive systems are modules), but it will also provide a better understanding of what a module is (since all modules are cognitive systems)
Macpherson, Fiona (forthcoming). 'Cognitive penetration of colour experience: Rethinking the issue in light of an indirect mechanism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.   (Google)
Abstract: Can the phenomenal character of perceptual experience be altered by the states of one’s cognitive system, for example, one’s thoughts or beliefs? Ifone thinks that this can happen [at least in certain ways that are identWed in the paper] then one thinks that there can be cognitive penetration of perceptual experience; otherwise, one thinks that perceptual experience is cognitivelv impenetrable. I claim that there is one alleged case ofcognitive penetration that cannot be explained away by the standard strategies one can typicallv use to explain away alleged cases. The case is one in which it seems subjects’ beliefs about the typical colour of objects ajfects their colour experience. I propose a two-step mechanism of indirect cognitive penetration that explains how cognitive penetration may occur. I show that there is independent evidence that each step in this process can occur. I suspect that people who are opposed to the idea that perceptual experience is cognitivelv penetrable will be less opposed to the idea when they come to consider this indirect mechanism and that those who are generallv sympathetic to the idea ofcognitive penetrability will welcome the elucidation ofthis plausible mechanism
Machery, Eduoard (2008). Modularity and the flexibility of human cognition. Mind and Language 23 (3):263–272.   (Google | More links)
Abstract:   In The Architecture of the Mind, Carruthers proposes a new and detailed explanation for how human cognition could be both flexible and massively modular. The combinatorial nature of our linguistic faculty and our capacity to engage in inner speech are the cornerstones of this new explanation. Despite the ingenuity of this proposal, I argue that Carruthers has failed to explain how a massively modular mind could display the flexibility that is characteristic of human thought
Machery, Edouard (online). Massive modularity and brain evolution.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Quartz (2002) argues that some recent findings about the evolution of the brain (Finlay & Darlington, 1995) are inconsistent with evolutionary psychologists’ massive modularity hypothesis. In substance, Quartz contends that since the volume of the neocortex evolved in a concerted manner, natural selection did not act on neocortical systems independently of each other, which is a necessary condition for the massive modularity of our cognition to be true. I argue however that Quartz’s argument fails to undermine the massive modularity hypothesis
Maier, Alexander; Wilke, Melanie; Logothetis, Nikos K. & Leopold, David A. (2003). Perception of temporally interleaved ambiguous patterns. Current Biology.   (Cited by 19 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Background: Continuous viewing of ambiguous patterns is characterized by wavering perception that alternates between two or more equally valid visual solutions. However, when such patterns are viewed intermittently, either by repetitive presentation or by periodic closing of the eyes, perception can become locked or "frozen" in one configuration for several minutes at a time. One aspect of this stabilization is the possible existence of a perceptual memory that persists during periods in which the ambiguous stimulus is absent. Here, we use a novel paradgim of temporally interleaved ambiguous stimuli to explore the nature of this memory, with particular regard to its potential impact on perceptual organization. Results: We found that the persistence of a perceptual configuration was robust to interposed visual patterns and, further, that at least three ambiguous patterns, when interleaved in time, could undergo parallel, stable time courses. Then, using an interleaved presentation paradigm, we established that the occasional reversal in one pattern could be coupled with that of its interleaved counterpart, and that this coupling was a function of the structural similarity between the patterns. Conclusions: We postulate that the stabilization observed with repetitive presentation of ambiguous patterns can be at least partially accounted for by processes that retain a recent perceptual interpretation, and we speculate that such memory may be important in natural vision. We further propose tha the interleaved paradigm introduced here may be of great value to gauge aspects of stimulus similarity that appeal to particular mechanisms of perceptual organization
Mameli, Matteo (2002). Modules and mindreaders. Biology and Philosophy 16 (3):377-93.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract: There are many interesting empirical and theoretical issues concerning the evolution of cognition. Despite this, recent books on the topic concentrate on two problems. One is mental modularity. The other is what distinguishes human from non-human minds. While it is easy to understand why people are interested in human uniqueness, it is not clear why modularity is the centre of attention. Fodor (2000) has a nice argument for why people _should_ be interested in modularity
Marslen-Wilson, William & Komisarjevsky Tyler, Lorraine (1987). Against modularity. In Modularity In Knowledge Representation And Natural- Language Understanding. Cambridge: Mit Press.   (Cited by 101 | Google)
McClamrock, Ron (2003). Modularity. In Lynn Nadel (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science. Nature Publishing Group.   (Google)
Abstract: Marr (for whom the boundary of the visual module the cognitive impenetrability of the systems of
Meyering, Theo C. (1994). Fodor's modularity: A new name for an old dilemma. Philosophical Psychology 7 (1):39-62.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: This paper critically examines the argument structure of Fodor's theory of modularity. Fodor claims computational autonomy as the essential properly of modular processing. This property has profound consequences, burdening modularity theory with corollaries of rigidity, non-plasticity, nativism, and the old Cartesian dualism of sensing and thinking. However, it is argued that Fodor's argument for computational autonomy is crucially dependent on yet another postulate of Fodor's theory, viz. his thesis of strong modularity, ie. the view that functionally distinct modules must also have physical counterparts in the neural architecture of the brain. Yet, Fodor offers little or no independent support for this neurological speculation. Moreover, due to the cognitivist underpinnings of Fodor's theory his view of modules as 'mental organs'faces an untenable dilemma that is to be traced back to the earliest history of modem cognitive science, viz. to the rationalist-computationalist research program initiated by Descartes and Male-branche. The tension characteristic for the Cartesian program was one that arose between information correlation and information processing accounts of the transactions between body and mind. Similarly, the tension characteristic for Fodor's theory of modularity is one between a causal account of modules on the model of simple detection mechanisms, and an information processing account of modules on the model of vast and elaborate cognitive systems. It is argued that the resulting concept of a cognitive module Fodorian style constitutes an amalgam of incompatible desiderata that fails to stake out a natural kind for cognitive science. As an alternative account, the final section shows connectionism to be capable of encompassing both Gibsonian and 'new look' accounts of cognitive achievements within one theoretical perspective, thus providing a fruitful interfield theory capable of combining the theoretical resources of the ecological approach with the indispensable theoretical complement provided by psychological processing accounts. This change of perspective would ultimately involve recasting the symbo-functionalist notion of cognitive function along bio-psychological lines
Miłkowski, Marcin (2008). When Weak Modularity is Robust Enough? Análisis Filosófico 28 (1):77-89.   (Google)
Abstract: In this paper, I suggest that the notion of module explicitly defined by Peter Carruthers in The Architecture of The Mind (Carruthers 2006) is not really In use in the book. Instead, a more robust notion seems to be actually in play. The more robust notion, albeit implicitly assumed, seems to be far more useful for making claims about the modularity of mind. Otherwise, the claims would become trivial. This robust notion will be reconstructed and improved upon by putting it into a more general framework of mental architecture. I defend the view that modules are the outcome of structural rather than functional decomposition and that they should be conceived as near decomposable systems.
Murphy, Dominic (2006). On Fodor's analogy: Why psychology is like philosophy of science after all. Mind and Language 21 (5):553-564.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Jerry Fodor has argued that a modular mind must include central systems responsible for updating beliefs, and has defended this position by appealing to shared properties of belief fixation and scientific confirmation. Peter Carruthers and Stephen Pinker have attacked this analogy between science and ordinary inference. I examine their arguments and show that they fail. This does not show that Fodor's more general position is correct
Olsson, Erik J. (1997). Coherence and the modularity of mind. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 75 (3):404-11.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Parsell, Mitch (2005). Context-sensitive inference, modularity, and the assumption of formal processing. Philosophical Psychology 18 (1):45-58.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Performance on the Wason selection task varies with content. This has been taken to demonstrate that there are different cognitive modules for dealing with different conceptual domains. This implication is only legitimate if our underlying cognitive architecture is formal. A non-formal system can explain content-sensitive inference without appeal to independent inferential modules
Pinker, Steven (2005). A reply to Jerry Fodor on how the mind works. Mind and Language 20 (1):33-38.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Prinz, Jesse J. (2006). Is the mind really modular? In Robert J. Stainton (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Cognitive Science. Blackwell.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Abstract: When Fodor titled his (1983) book the _Modularity of Mind_, he overstated his position. His actual view is that the mind divides into systems some of which are modular and others of which are not. The book would have been more aptly, if less provocatively, called _The Modularity of Low-Level Peripheral Systems_. High-level perception and cognitive systems are non-modular on Fodor’s theory. In recent years, modularity has found more zealous defenders, who claim that the entire mind divides into highly specialized modules. This view has been especially popular among Evolutionary Psychologists. They claim that the mind is massively modular (Cosmides and Tooby, 1994; Sperber, 1994; Pinker, 1997; see also Samuels, 1998). Like a Swiss Army Knife, the mind is an assembly of specialized tools, each of which has been designed for some particular purpose. My goal here is to raise doubts about both peripheral modularity and massive modularity. To do that, I will rely on the criteria for modularity laid out by Fodor (1983). I will argue that neither input systems, nor central systems are modular on any of these criteria
Robbins, Philip (2008). Minimalism and modularity. In Gerhard Preyer & Georg Peter (eds.), Context-Sensitivity and Semantic Minimalism.   (Google)
Robbins, Philip (online). Modularity of Mind. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.   (Google)
Ross, Jacob J. (1990). Against postulating central systems in the mind. Philosophy of Science 57 (2):297-312.   (Annotation | Google | More links)
Samuels, Richard (2006). Is the human mind massively modular? In Rod Stainton (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Cognitive Science. Blackwell.   (Google)
Abstract: Among the most pervasive and fundamental assumptions in cognitive science is that the human mind (or mind-brain) is a mechanism of some sort: a physical device com- posed of functionally specifiable subsystems. On this view, functional decomposition – the analysis of the overall system into functionally specifiable parts – becomes a central project for a science of the mind, and the resulting theories of cognitive archi- tecture essential to our understanding of human psychology
Samuels, Richard (2000). Massively modular minds: Evolutionary psychology and cognitive architecture. Evolution and the Human Mind.   (Cited by 28 | Google)
Abstract: What are the elements from which the human mind is composed? What structures make up our _cognitive architecture?_ One of the most recent and intriguing answers to this question comes from the newly emerging interdisciplinary field of evolutionary psychology. Evolutionary psychologists defend a _massively modular_ conception of mental architecture which views the mind –including those parts responsible for such ‘central processes’ as belief revision and reasoning— as composed largely or perhaps even entirely of innate, special-purpose computational mechanisms or ‘modules’ that have been shaped by natural selection to handle the sorts of recurrent information processing problems that confronted our hunter-gatherer forebears (Cosmides and Tooby,192; Sperber, 1994; Samuels, 1998a)
Samuels, Richard (2005). The complexity of cognition: Tractability arguments for massive modularity. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Schneider, Susan, Yes, it does: A diatribe on Jerry Fodor's the mind doesn't work that way.   (Google)
Abstract: The Mind Doesn’t Work That Way is an expose of certain theoretical problems in cognitive science, and in particular, problems that concern the Classical Computational Theory of Mind (CTM). The problems that Fodor worries plague CTM divide into two kinds, and both purport to show that the success of cognitive science will likely be limited to the modules. The first sort of problem concerns what Fodor has called “global properties”; features that a mental sentence has which depend on how the sentence interacts with a larger plan (i.e., set of sentences), rather than the type identity of the sentence alone. The second problem concerns what many have called, “The Relevance Problem”: the problem of whether and how humans determine what is relevant in a computational manner. However, I argue that the problem that Fodor believes global properties pose for CTM is a non-problem, and that further, while the relevance problem is a serious research issue, it does not justify the grim view that cognitive science, and CTM in particular, will likely fail to explain cognition
Shanon, Benny (1988). Remarks on the modularity of mind. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 39 (September):331-52.   (Cited by 5 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Abstract: the concept of modularity of cognitive processes is introduced and a picture of mind is proposed according to which the peripheral input systems are modular whereas the central processes are not. The present paper examines this view from both a methodological and a substaintive perspective. Methodologically, a contrast between considerations of principle and of fact is made and implications for the nature of cognitive theory are discussed. Substantively, constraints on information flow are examined as they appear in various aspects of psychological phenomenology, and central processes in particular. It is suggested that the notion of modularity as structural and fixed be replaced by one which is dynamic, context-dependent. This modification, it is argued, is productive for the characterization of the workings of the mind, and it defines new questions for investigation
Shieber, Joseph (forthcoming). A Partial Defense of Intuition on Naturalist Grounds. Synthese.   (Google)
Siegal, Michael & Surian, Luca (2006). Modularity in language and theory of mind: What is the evidence? In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition.   (Cited by 5 | Google)
Sperber, Dan & Hirschfeld, Lawrence (2006). Culture and modularity. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition.   (Google)
Spector, Lee (2002). Hierarchy helps it work that way. Philosophical Psychology 15 (2):109-117.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Jerry Fodor argues, in The mind doesn't work that way (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2000, that the computational theory of mind is undermined by the pervasive context sensitivity of human cognition. His objections can be easily met, however, by noting the properties of appropriately structured representation hierarchies
Sperber, Dan (2002). In defense of massive modularity. In Emmanuel Dupoux (ed.), Language, Brain and Cognitive Development: Essays in Honor of Jacques Mehler. MIT Press.   (Cited by 49 | Google)
Sperber, Dan (2005). Modularity and relevance: How can a massively modular mind be flexible and context-sensitive. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Content. Oup.   (Cited by 21 | Google | More links)
Sterelny, Kim (2004). Language, modularity, and evolution. In David Papineau & Graham MacDonald (eds.), Teleosemantics: New Philosophical Essays. Oup.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Language is at the core of the cognitive revolution that has transformed that discipline over the last forty years or so, and it is also the central paradigm for the most prominent attempt to synthesise psychology and evolutionary theory. A single and distinctively modular view of language has emerged out of both these perspectives, one that encourages a certain idealisation. Linguistic competence is uniform, independent of other cognitive capacities, and with a developmental trajectory that is largely independent of environmental input (Pinker 1994; Pinker 1997). Thus language is seen as a paradigm of John Tooby and Leda Cosmides’ concept of “evoked culture”: linguistic experience serves only to select a specific item from a menu of innately available options (Tooby and Cosmides 1992). In explaining this concept, they appeal to the metaphor of a jukebox. The human genome pre-stores a set of options, and the different experiences provided by different cultures select different elements out of this option set. I think an appropriate evolutionary perspective on language substantially undercuts this idealisation and the evoked culture model of language. Variability between speakers; the sensitivity of linguistic development to environmental input; and the limits of encapsulation are not noise. They are central to the language and its evolution
Stillings, Neil (1989). Modularity and naturalism. In Theories of Vision in Modularity in Knowledge Representation and Natural-Language Understanding. Cambridge: MIT Press.   (Google)
Sutton, John (ms). Review of Jerry Fodor, the mind doesn’t work that way: The scope and limits of computational psychology.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This review sketches Fodor's critique of evolutionary psychology and the 'massive modularity' thesis; queries his views on abduction in central processes; and suggests that his pessimism about the scope of computational psychology undermines his realism about folk psychology
Weiskopf, Daniel A. (2002). On Fodor's The Mind Doesn't Work That Way. Philosophical Psychology 15 (4):551-562.   (Google)
Abstract: The "New Synthesis" in cognitive science is committed to the computational theory of mind (CTM), massive modularity, nativism, and adaptationism. In The mind doesn't work that way , Jerry Fodor argues that CTM has problems explaining abductive or global inference, but that the New Synthesis offers no solution, since massive modularity is in fact incompatible with global cognitive processes. I argue that it is not clear how global human mentation is, so whether CTM is imperiled is an open question. Massive modularity also lacks some of the invidious commitments Fodor ascribes to it. Furthermore, Fodor's anti-adaptationist arguments are in tension with his nativism about the contents of modular systems. The New Synthesis thus has points worth preserving
Wilson, Robert A. (2008). The drink you have when you're not having a drink. Mind and Language 23 (3):273–283.   (Google | More links)
Abstract:   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
Wilson, Robert A. (2005). What computers (still, still) can't do: Jerry Fodor on computation and modularity. Canadian Journal of Philosophy Supp 30:407-425.   (Google)
Abstract: Fodor's thinking on modularity has been influential throughout a range of the areas studying cognition, chiefly as a prod for positive work on modularity and domain-specificity. In _The Mind Doesn't Work That Way_, Fodor has developed the dark message of _The Modularity of Mind_ regarding the limits to modularity and computational analyses. This paper offers a critical assessment of Fodor's scepticism with an eye to highlighting some broader issues in play, including the nature of computation and the role of recent empirical developments in the cognitive sciences in assessing Fodor's position

7.1c Evolution of Cognition

Atkinson, Anthony P. & Wheeler, M. (2003). Evolutionary psychology's grain problem and the cognitive neuroscience of reasoning. In David E. Over (ed.), Evolution and the Psychology of Thinking: The Debate. Psychology Press.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Atkinson, Anthony P. & Wheeler, M. (2004). The grain of domains: The evolutionary-psychological case against domain-general cognition. Mind and Language 19 (2):147-76.   (Cited by 11 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Prominent evolutionary psychologists have argued that our innate psychological endowment consists of numerous domainspecific cognitive resources, rather than a few domaingeneral ones. In the light of some conceptual clarification, we examine the central inprinciple arguments that evolutionary psychologists mount against domaingeneral cognition. We conclude (a) that the fundamental logic of Darwinism, as advanced within evolutionary psychology, does not entail that the innate mind consists exclusively, or even massively, of domainspecific features, and (b) that a mixed innate cognitive economy of domainspecific and domaingeneral resources remains a genuine conceptual possibility. However, an examination of evolutionary psychology's 'grain problem' reveals that there is no way of establishing a principled and robust distinction between domainspecific and domaingeneral features. Nevertheless, we show that evolutionary psychologists can and do live with this grain problem without their whole enterprise being undermined
Atran, Scott (2005). Adaptationism for human cognition: Strong, spurious, or weak? Mind and Language 20 (1):39-67.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Strong adaptationists explore complex organic design as taskspecific adaptations to ancestral environments. This strategy seems best when there is evidence of homology. Weak adaptationists don't assume that complex organic (including cognitive and linguistic) functioning necessarily or primarily represents taskspecific adaptation. This approach to cognition resembles physicists' attempts to deductively explain the most facts with fewest hypotheses. For certain domainspecific competencies (folkbiology) strong adaptationism is useful but not necessary to research. With grouplevel belief systems (religion) strong adaptationism degenerates into spurious notions of social function and cultural selection. In other cases (language, especially universal grammar) weak adaptationism's 'minimalist' approach seems productive
Atran, Scott (2005). Strong versus weak adaptationism in cognition and language. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.   (Google)
Bergstrom, Carl T. & Godfrey-Smith, Peter (1998). On the evolution of behavioral complexity in individuals and populations. Biology and Philosophy 13 (2):205-31.   (Cited by 11 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   A wide range of ecological and evolutionary models predict variety in phenotype or behavior when a population is at equilibrium. This heterogeneity can be realized in different ways. For example, it can be realized through a complex population of individuals exhibiting different simple behaviors, or through a simple population of individuals exhibiting complex, varying behaviors. In some theoretical frameworks these different realizations are treated as equivalent, but natural selection distinguishes between these two alternatives in subtle ways. By investigating an increasingly complex series of models, from a simple fluctuating selection model up to a finite population hawk/dove game, we explore the selective pressures which discriminate between pure strategists, mixed at the population level, and individual mixed strategists. Our analysis reveals some important limitations to the ESS framework often employed to investigate the evolution of complex behavior
Bogdan, Radu J. (2003). Minding Minds: Evolving a Reflexive Mind by Interpreting Others. MIT Press.   (Cited by 36 | Google | More links)
Calvin, William H. (2004). A Brief History of the Mind: From Apes to Intellect and Beyond. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 14 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This book looks back at the simpler versions of mental life in apes, Neanderthals, and our ancestors, back before our burst of creativity started 50,000 years...
Cangelosi, Angelo; Greco, Alberto & Harnad, Stevan (2002). Symbol grounding and the symbolic theft hypothesis. In A. Cangelosi & D. Parisi (eds.), Simulating the Evolution of Language. Springer-Verlag.   (Cited by 16 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Scholars studying the origins and evolution of language are also interested in the general issue of the evolution of cognition. Language is not an isolated capability of the individual, but has intrinsic relationships with many other behavioral, cognitive, and social abilities. By understanding the mechanisms underlying the evolution of linguistic abilities, it is possible to understand the evolution of cognitive abilities. Cognitivism, one of the current approaches in psychology and cognitive science, proposes that symbol systems capture mental phenomena, and attributes cognitive validity to them. Therefore, in the same way that language is considered the prototype of cognitive abilities, a symbol system has become the prototype for studying language and cognitive systems. Symbol systems are advantageous as they are easily studied through computer simulation (a computer program is a symbol system itself), and this is why language is often studied using computational models
Christensen, Dr Wayne (ms). The decoupled representation theory of the evolution of cognition - a critical assessment.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Sterelny’s Thought in a Hostile World (2003) presents a complex, systematically structured theory of the evolution of cognition centered on a concept of decoupled representation. Taking Godfrey-Smith’s (1996) analysis of the evolution of behavioral flexibility as a framework, the theory describes increasingly complex grades of representation beginning with simple detection and culminating with decoupled representation, said to be belief-like, and it characterizes selection forces that drive evolutionary transformations in these forms of representation. Sterelny’s ultimate explanatory target is the evolution of human agency. This paper develops a detailed analysis of the main cognitive aspects. It is argued that some of the major claims are not correct: decoupled representation as defined doesn’t capture belief-like representation, and, properly understood, decoupled representation turns out to be ubiquitous amongst multicellular animals. However some of the key ideas are right, or along the right lines, and suggestions are made for modifying and expanding the conceptual framework
Coates, Paul (2003). Review of Is the Visual World a Grand Illusion?. Human Nature Review 3:176-182.   (Google)
Abstract: A cluster of experiments on “Change Blindness”, “Inattentional Blindness” and associated phenomena appear to demonstrate extremely counter intuitive results. According to one plausible characterisation, these results show that we consciously take in far less of the visual world than it seems we are aware of. It is worth briefly summarising the results of two recent sets of experiments, in order to give a flavour of this work. In ‘Gorillas in our Midst’ (Simons, D. and Chabris, C., Perception, 1999, 28), subjects were asked to perform a task that involved watching a video of a casual basketball game that lasts for about a minute. The task involves counting the number of consecutive passes between members of the one of the teams. While the basketball is being thrown from player to player, something unexpected takes place: a person dressed in a black gorilla-suit walks through the play, stops briefly in the centre of the picture, thumps his chest, and then walks off. Although most subjects correctly record the number of passes made by the team, at least half of these subjects fail to notice the gorilla-suited interloper, who is visible for about nine seconds. When shown the video sequence a second time they are amazed to observe what they had previously overlooked
Cosmides, Leda & Tooby, John (1994). Beyond intuition and instinct blindness: Toward an evolutionary rigorous cognitive science. Cognition 50:41-77.   (Cited by 145 | Google)
Cummins, Denise D. & Cummins, Robert E. (1999). Biological preparedness and evolutionary explanation. Cognition 73 (3):B37-B53.   (Cited by 57 | Google | More links)
Abstract: It is commonly supposed that evolutionary explanations of cognitive phenomena involve the assumption that the capacities to be explained are both innate and modular. This is understandable: independent selection of a trait requires that it be both heritable and largely decoupled from other `nearby' traits. Cognitive capacities realized as innate modules would certainly satisfy these contraints. A viable evolutionary cognitive psychology, however, requires neither extreme nativism nor modularity, though it is consistent with both. In this paper, we seek to show that rather weak assumptions about innateness and modularity are consistent with evolutionary explanations of cognitive capacities. Evolutionary pressures can affect the degree to which the development of a capacity is canalized by biasing acquisition/ learning in ways that favor development of concepts and capacities that proved adaptive to an organism's ancestors. q 1999 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved
Cummins, Denise D. & Cummins, Robert E. (2005). Innate modules vs innate learning biases. Cognitive Processing.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Proponents of the dominant paradigm in evolutionary psychology argue that a viable evolutionary cognitive psychology requires that specific cognitive capacities be heritable and “quasi-independent” from other heritable traits, and that these requirements are best satisfied by innate cognitive modules. We argue here that neither of these are required in order to describe and explain how evolution shaped the mind
Davies, Paul Sheldon (1996). Preface: Evolutionary theory in cognitive psychology. Minds and Machines 6 (4).   (Cited by 18 | Google | More links)
Downes, Stephen M. (2002). Some recent developments in evolutionary approaches to the study of human cognition and behavior. Biology and Philosophy 16 (5):575-94.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   In this paper I review some theoretical exchanges and empiricalresults from recent work on human behavior and cognition in thehope of indicating some productive avenues for critical engagement.I focus particular attention on methodological debates between Evolutionary Psychologists and behavioral ecologists. I argue for a broader and more encompassing approach to the evolutionarily based study of human behavior and cognition than either of these two rivals present
Driscoll, Catherine (2004). Can behaviors be adaptations? Philosophy of Science 71 (1):16-35.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Kim Sterelny and Paul Griffiths (Sterelny 1992, Sterelny and Griffiths 1999) have argued that sociobiology is unworkable because it requires that human behaviors can be adaptations; however, behaviors produced by a functionalist psychology do not meet Lewontin's quasi-independence criterion and therefore cannot be adaptations. Consequently, an evolutionary psychologywhich regards psychological mechanisms as adaptationsshould replace sociobiology. I address two interpretations of their argument. I argue that the strong interpretation fails because functionalist psychology need not prevent behaviors from evolving independently, and it relies on too strong an interpretation of the quasi-independence criterion. The weaker interpretation does not undermine sociobiology, and evolutionary psychology would be vulnerable to the same criticism. Finally, I offer reasons to think that both mental mechanisms and behaviors can be adaptations
Durrant, Russil & Haig, Brian D. (2001). How to pursue the adaptationist program in psychology. Philosophical Psychology 14 (4):357 – 380.   (Cited by 33 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In recent times evolutionary psychologists have offered adaptation explanations for a wide range of human psychological characteristics. Critics, however, have argued that such endeavors are problematic because the appropriate evidence required to demonstrate adaptation is unlikely to be forthcoming, therefore severely limiting the role of the adaptationist program in psychology. More specifically, doubts have been raised over both the methodology employed by evolutionary psychologists for studying adaptations and about the possibility of ever developing acceptably rigorous evolutionary explanations of human psychological phenomena. We argue that by employing a wide range of methods for inferring adaptation and by adopting an inference to the best explanation strategy for evaluating adaptation explanations, these two doubts can be adequately addressed. We illustrate how this approach can be fruitfully employed in evaluating claims about the evolutionary origins of language, and conclude with a brief discussion of the future of evolutionary psychology
Gardenfors, Peter (2004). Does evolution provide a key to the scientific study of mind? The detachment of thought. In Christina E. Erneling & David Martel Johnson (eds.), Mind As a Scientific Object. Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Millikan, Ruth G. (1997). On cognitive luck: Externalism in an evolutionary frame. In P. Machamer & M. Carrier (eds.), Mindscapes: Philosophy, Science, and the Mind. Pittsburgh University Press and Universtaetsverlag Konstanz.   (Cited by 7 | Google)
Abstract: Steven Pinker (1995) chides the educated layman for imagining Darwin's theory to go this way (the vertical lines are "begats"): [Figure #1] Pinker says, "evolution did not make a ladder; it made a bush" (p. 343), and he gives us the following diagrams instead, showing how it went, in increasing detail, down to us
Gervet, Jacques; Gallo, Alain; Chalmeau, Raphael & Soleilhavoup, Muriel (1996). Some prerequisites for a study of the evolution of cognition in the animal kingdom. Acta Biotheoretica 44 (1).   (Google)
Abstract: A distinction is made between two definitions of animal cognition: the one most frequently employed in cognitive sciences considers cognition as extracting and processing information; a more phenomenologically inspired model considers it as attributing to a form of the outside world a significance, linked to the state of the animal. The respective fields of validity of these two models are discussed along with the limitations they entail, and the questions they pose to evolutionary biologists are emphasized. This is followed by a presentation of a general overview of what might be the study of the evolution of knowledge in animals
Godfrey-Smith, Peter (1996). Complexity and the Function of Mind in Nature. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 134 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This book explains the relationship between intelligence and environmental complexity, and in so doing links philosophy of mind to more general issues about the relations between organisms and environments, and to the general pattern of 'externalist' explanations. The author provides a biological approach to the investigation of mind and cognition in nature. In particular he explores the idea that the function of cognition is to enable agents to deal with environmental complexity. The history of the idea in the work of Dewey and Spencer is considered, as is the impact of recent evolutionary theory on our understanding of the place of mind in nature
Godfrey-Smith, Peter (2002). Environmental complexity and the evolution of cognition. In Robert J. Sternberg & J. Kaufman (eds.), The Evolution of Intelligence. Lawrence Erlbaum.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract: One problem faced in discussions of the evolution of intelligence is the need to get a precise fix on what is to be explained. Terms like "intelligence," "cognition" and "mind" do not have simple and agreed-upon meanings, and the differences between conceptions of intelligence have consequences for evolutionary explanation. I hope the papers in this volume will enable us to make progress on this problem. The present contribution is mostly focused on these basic and foundational issues, although the last section of the paper will look at some specific models and programs of empirical work
Godfrey-Smith, Peter (2002). On the evolution of representational and interpretive capacities. The Monist 85 (1):50-69.   (Cited by 8 | Google)
Godfrey-Smith, Peter (forthcoming). Untangling the evolution of mental representation. In A. Zilhao (ed.), Cognition, Evolution, and Rationality: A Cognitive Science for the XXIst Century. Routledge.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Abstract: The "tangle" referred to in my title is a special set of problems that arise in understanding the evolution of mental representation. These are problems over and above those involved in reconstructing evolutionary histories in general, over and above those involved in dealing with human evolution, and even over and above those involved in tackling the evolution of other human psychological traits. I am talking about a peculiar and troublesome set of interactions and possibilities, linked to long-standing debates about the status of folk psychology and the nature of semantic properties
Greenberg, Mark (2004). Goals versus memes: Explanation in the theory of cultural evolution. In Susan L. Hurley & Nick Chater (eds.), Perspectives on Imitation. MIT Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Darwinian theories of culture need to show that they improve upon the commonsense view that cultural change is explained by humans? skillful pursuit of their conscious goals. In order for meme theory to pull its weight, it is not enough to show that the development and spread of an idea is, broadly speaking, Darwinian, in the sense that it proceeds by the accumulation of change through the differential survival and transmission of varying elements. It could still be the case that the best explanation of why the idea has developed and spread is the conscious pursuit of human goals. Meme theory has the potential to do explanatory work in diverse ways. It can challenge the goal-based account of cultural change directly. Other possibilities for meme theory include explaining the acquisition of our goals and showing that memes and genes evolve together, each affecting the selective forces acting on the other. Raising the question of meme theory?s explanatory payoff brings out the importance of the ?selfish-meme? idea and the idea of non-content biases. Both have the potential to challenge the claim that our goals are in the driver?s seat. In order to show that a Darwinian theory of culture is more than an idle redescription, however, it is necessary to make the case that it offers explanatory gain over its competitors, in particular over the common sense goal-based account
Hardcastle, Valerie Gray (1999). Where Biology Meets Psychology: Philosophical Essays. MIT Press.   (Cited by 25 | Google)
Abstract: This book is perhaps the first to open a dialogue between the two disciplines.
Hauser, Marc D. & Spelke, Elizabeth (2004). Evolutionary and developmental foundations of human knowledge. In Michael S. Gazzaniga (ed.), The Cognitive Neurosciences III. MIT Press.   (Cited by 36 | Google | More links)
Abstract: What are the brain and cognitive systems that allow humans to play baseball, compute square roots, cook soufflés, or navigate the Tokyo subways? It may seem that studies of human infants and of non-human animals will tell us little about these abilities, because only educated, enculturated human adults engage in organized games, formal mathematics, gourmet cooking, or map-reading. In this chapter, we argue against this seemingly sensible conclusion. When human adults exhibit complex, uniquely human, culture-specific skills, they draw on a set of psychological and neural mechanisms with two distinctive properties: they evolved before humanity and thus are shared with other animals, and they emerge early in human development and thus are common to infants, children, and adults. These core knowledge systems form the building blocks for uniquely human skills. Without them we wouldn’t be able to learn about different kinds of games, mathematics, cooking, or maps. To understand what is special about human intelligence, therefore, we must study both the core knowledge systems on which it rests and the mechanisms by which these systems are orchestrated to permit new kinds of concepts and cognitive processes. What is core knowledge? A wealth of research on non-human primates and on human infants suggests that a system of core knowledge is characterized by four properties (Hauser, 2000; Spelke, 2000). First, it is domain-specific: each system functions to represent particular kinds of entities such as conspecific agents, manipulable objects, places in the environmental layout, and numerosities. Second, it is task-specific: each system uses its representations to address specific questions about the world, such as “who is this?” [face recognition], “what does this do?” [categorization of artifacts], “where am I?” [spatial orientation], and “how many are here?” [enumeration]. Third, it is relatively encapsulated: each uses only a subset of the information delivered by an animal’s input systems and sends information only to a subset of the animal’s output systems.
Horacio Fabrega Jr, (2005). Biological evolution of cognition and culture: Off Arbib's mirror-neuron system stage? Behavioral and Brain Sciences 28 (2):131-132.   (Google)
Abstract: Arbib offers a comprehensive, elegant formulation of brain/language evolution; with significant implications for social as well as biological sciences. Important psychological antecedents and later correlates are presupposed; their conceptual enrichment through protosign and protospeech is abbreviated in favor of practical communication. What culture “is” and whether protosign and protospeech involve a protoculture are not considered. Arbib also avoids dealing with the question of evolution of mind, consciousness, and self
Humphrey, N. (2003). The Inner Eye: Social Intelligence in Evolution. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 62 | Google)
Abstract: Easy to read, adorned with Mel Calman's brilliant illustrations, passionately argued, yet never less than scientifically profound, this book remains the...
Humphrey, N. (2003). The Mind Made Flesh: Essays From the Frontiers of Psychology and Evolution. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Nicholas Humphrey's writings about the evolution of the mind have done much to set the agenda for contemporary psychology.
Logan, J. D. (1898). Psychology and the argument from design. Philosophical Review 7 (6):604-614.   (Google | More links)
Machery, Edouard & Barrett, H. Clark (2006). Debunking Adapting Minds. Philosophy of Science 73.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Abstract: David Buller’s recent book, _Adapting Minds_, is a philosophical critique of the field of evolutionary psychology. Buller argues that evolutionary psychology is utterly bankrupt from both a theoretical and an empirical point of view. Although _Adapting Minds _has been well received in both the academic press and the popular media, we argue that Buller’s critique of evolutionary psychology fails
Mameli, Matteo (online). Evolution and psychology in philosophical perspective.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Abstract: evolution has resulted in a restricted set of basic Humans are evolved organisms. This means that innate mental abilities and, in so far as human human minds have an evolutionary origin and psychological traits are concerned, in nothing that human psychological traits are, in one way else. This basic set comprises sensory skills and a or another, the product of evolution. This chap- small number of general-purpose rules for learn-
Mameli, Matteo (2002). Mindreading, mindshaping, and evolution. Biology and Philosophy 16 (5):595-626.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract: I present and apply some powerful tools for studying human evolution and the impact of cultural resources on it. The tools in question are a theory of niche construction and a theory about the evolutionary significance of extragenetic (and, in particular, of psychological and social) inheritance. These tools are used to show how culturally transmitted resources can be recruited by development and become generatively entrenched. The case study is constituted by those culturally transmitted items that social psychologists call ‘expectancies’. Expectancy effects are mindshaping effects of our mindreading dispositions. I show how expectancies may have been recruited by important human developmental processes (like those involved in language acquisition and those responsible for gender differences) and how they may have become entrenched. If the hypothesis is correct, the relation between mindreading and human evolution is more intricate than usually thought
Martel Johnson, David (2004). Mind, brain, and the upper paleolithic. In Christina E. Erneling & David Martel Johnson (eds.), Mind As a Scientific Object. Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Mason, Kelby; Sripada, Chandra & Stich, Stephen P. (forthcoming). The philosophy of psychology. In Dermot Moran (ed.), The Routledge Companion to Twentieth-Century Philosophy. Routledge.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: The 20th century has been a tumultuous time in psychology – a century in which the discipline struggled with basic questions about its intellectual identity, but nonetheless managed to achieve spectacular growth and maturation. It’s not surprising, then, that psychology has attracted sustained philosophical attention and stimulated rich philosophical debate. Some of this debate was aimed at understanding, and sometimes criticizing, the assumptions, concepts and explanatory strategies prevailing in the psychology of the time. But much philosophical work has also been devoted to exploring the implications of psychological findings and theories for broader philosophical questions like: Are humans really rational animals? How malleable is human nature? and Do we have any innate knowledge or innate ideas? One particularly noteworthy fact about philosophy of psychology in the 20th century is that, in the last quarter of the century, the distinction between psychology and the philosophy of psychology began to dissolve as philosophers played an increasingly active role in articulating and testing empirical theories about the mind and psychologists became increasingly interested in the philosophical underpinnings and implications of their work. Our survey is divided into five sections, each focusing on an important theme in 20th century psychology which has been the focus of philosophical attention and has benefited from philosophical scrutiny
Okasha, S. (2003). Fodor on cognition, modularity, and adaptationism. Philosophy of Science 70 (1):68-88.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper critically examines Jerry Fodor's latest attacks on evolutionary psychology. Contra Leda Cosmides and John Tooby, Fodor argues (i) there is no reason to think that human cognition is a Darwinian adaptation in the first place, and (ii) there is no valid inference from adaptationism about the mind to massive modularity. However, Fodor maintains (iii) that there is a valid inference in the converse direction, from modularity to adaptationism, but (iv) that the language module is an exception to the validity of this inference. I explore Fodor's arguments for each of these claims, and the interrelations between them. I argue that Fodor is incorrect on point (i), correct on point (ii), partially correct on point (iii), and incorrect on point (iv). Overall, his critique fails to show that adopting a broadly Darwinian approach to cognition is intellectually indefensible
Papineau, David (2004). Friendly thoughts on the evolution of cognition (critical discussion of Kim Sterelny, Thought in a Hostile World: The Evolution of Human Cognition, 2003). Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (3):491-502.   (Google)
Papineau, David (2004). Kim Sterelny, thought in a hostile world: The evolution of human cognition , oxford: Blackwell, 2003, pp. XI 262, £50 (cloth), £16.95 (paper). Friendly thoughts on the evolution of cognition. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (3):491 – 502.   (Google | More links)
Pinker, Steven & Bloom, Paul (1990). Natural language and natural selection. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 13:707-27.   (Cited by 893 | Google | More links)
Plantinga, Alvin (2004). Evolution, epiphenomenalism, reductionism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (3):602-619.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Plotkin, Henry C. (2001). Evolution and the human mind: How far can we go? In D. Walsh (ed.), Evolution, Naturalism and Mind. Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Radcliffe Richards, J. (2000). Human Nature After Darwin: A Philosophical Introduction. Routledge.   (Google)
Red'ko, Vladimir G. (2000). Evolution of cognition: Towards the theory of origin of human logic. Foundations of Science 5 (3).   (Google)
Abstract: The main problem discussed in this paper is: Why and how did animal cognition abilities arise? It is argued that investigations of the evolution of animal cognition abilities are very important from an epistemological point of view. A new direction for interdisciplinary researches – the creation and development of the theory of human logic origin – is proposed. The approaches to the origination of such a theory (mathematical models of ``intelligent invention'' of biological evolution, the cybernetic schemes of evolutionary progress and purposeful adaptive behavior) as well as potential interdisciplinary links of the theory are described and analyzed
Richards, Robert J. (2005). Darwin's metaphysics of mind. In V. Hoesle & C. Illies (eds.), Darwin and Philosophy. Notre Dame University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Rosenberg, Alexander (1986). Intentional psychology and evolutionary biology, part II: The crucial disanalogy. Behaviorism 14:125-138.   (Google)
Sarnecki, John (2007). Developmental objections to evolutionary modularity. Biology and Philosophy 22 (4).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Evolutionary psychologists argue that selective pressures in our ancestral environment yield a highly specialized set of modular cognitive capacities. However, recent papers in developmental psychology and neuroscience claim that evolutionary accounts of modularity are incompatible with the flexibility and plasticity of the developing brain. Instead, they propose cortical and neuronal brain structures are fixed through interactions with our developmental environment. Buller and Gray Hardcastle contend that evolutionary accounts of cognitive development are unacceptably rigid in light of evidence of cortical plasticity. The developing structure of the brain is both too random and too sensitive to external stimuli to be the product of a fixed genetic mechanism. They also claim that the complexity of the human brain cannot be explained in terms of our meager genetic endowment. There simply are not enough genes to program the intricate neuronal structures that are essential to cognition. I argue that neither of these arguments are persuasive. Small numbers of genes can function to determine diverse phenotypical outcomes through evolutionarily selected developmental systems. Similarly, theories of modularity do not rule out the possibility that innate cognitive systems exploit environmental regularities to guide the developing structure of the brain. Consequently, the anti-adaptionist consequences of these positions should be rejected
Shapiro, Lawrence A. & Epstein, William M. (1998). Evolutionary theory meets cognitive psychology: A more selective perspective. Mind and Language 13 (2):171-94.   (Cited by 14 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Quite unexpectedly, cognitive psychologists find their field intimately connected to a whole new intellectual landscape that had previously seemed remote, unfamiliar, and all but irrelevant. Yet the proliferating connections tying together the cognitive and evolutionary communities promise to transform both fields, with each supplying necessary principles, methods, and a species of rigor that the other lacks. (Cosmides and Tooby, 1994, p. 85)
Shapiro, Lawrence A. (2001). Mind the adaptation. In D. Walsh (ed.), Evolution, Naturalism and Mind. Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Singh, R. M. (2005). Mind, modularity and evolution. Indian Philosophical Quarterly 32 (1-2):105-131.   (Google)
Sperber, Dan (1996). Explaining Culture: A Naturalistic Approach. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.   (Cited by 728 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The book is full of novel and thought provoking ideas and is a pleasure to read.
Sterelny, Kim (2003). Darwinian concepts in the philosophy of mind. In J. Hodges & Gregory Radick (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to Darwin. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Sterelny, Kim (2004). Reply to Papineau and Stich (critical discussion of Kim Sterelny, Thought in a Hostile World: The Evolution of Human Cognition, 2003). Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (3):512-522.   (Google)
Sterelny, Kim (2006). The evolution and evolvability of culture. Mind and Language 21 (2):137-165.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Joseph Henrich and Richard McElreath begin their survey of theories of cultural evolution with a striking historical example. They contrast the fate of the Bourke and Wills expedition — an attempt to explore some of the arid areas of inland Australia — with the routine survival of the local aboriginals in exactly the same area. That expedition ended in failure and death, despite the fact that it was well equipped, and despite the fact that those on the expedition were tough and experienced. For survival in such areas depended on accumulated local knowledge. The locals had learned how detoxify seeds before making bread from them, and how to catch the local fish. Bourke and Wills and their companions lacked this local knowledge, and died as a result (Henrich and McElreath 2003)
Sterelny, Kim (2003). Thought in a Hostile World. Blackwell.   (Cited by 87 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Blackwell Publishers, 2003 Review by Maura Pilotti, Ph.D. on Dec 1st 2003 Volume: 7, Number: 49
Stich, Stephen (2004). Some questions from the not-so-hostile world. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (3):503-511.   (Google)
Tooby, John & Cosmides, Leda (1998). Evolutionizing the cognitive sciences: A reply to Shapiro and Epstein. Mind and Language 13 (2):195-204.   (Cited by 9 | Google | More links)
Vilarroya, Oscar (2001). From functional mess to bounded functionality. Minds and Machines 11 (2).   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Some evolutionary psychologists contend that the best way to discover the functions of our present psychological systems is by appealing to the notion of functional mesh, that is, the assumed tight fit between a trait's design and the adaptive problem it is supposed to solve. In this paper, I argue that there exist theoretical considerations and empirical evidence that undermine this assumption of optimal design. Instead, I suggest that cognitive systems are constrained by what I call bounded functionality. This proposal makes use of Jacob's (1977) notion of evolution as a bricoleur and Simon's (1981) idea that problems can have ``satisficing'' solutions. Functional mesh will thus be shown to neglect constraints that are necessary to explain the evolution of psychological mechanisms
Walsh, Denis M. (2001). Naturalism, Evolution and the Mind. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 4 | Google)
Abstract: This collection of original essays covers a wide range of issues in current naturalised philosophy of mind.
Wasserman, Edward A. (2008). Development and evolution of cognition: One doth not fly into flying! Behavioral and Brain Sciences 31 (4):400-401.   (Google)
Weber, Bruce H. & Depew, David J. (eds.) (2003). Evolution and Learning: The Baldwin Effect Reconsidered. MIT Press.   (Cited by 35 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The essays in this book discuss the originally proposed Baldwin effect, how it was modified over time, and its possible contribution to contemporary empirical...
Wheeler, M. & Atkinson, Anthony P. (2001). Domains, brains and evolution. In D. Walsh (ed.), Evolution, Naturalism and Mind. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Woodward, James F. & Cowie, Fiona (2004). The mind is not (just) a system of modules shaped (just) by natural selection. In Christopher Hitchcock (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Philosophy of Science. Malden MA: Blackwell Publishing.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Wright, Richard D. (1994). The Moral Animal. Pantheon Books.   (Cited by 494 | Google)

7.1c.1 Evolutionary Psychology

Ariew, Andre (2003). Natural selection doesn't work that way: Jerry Fodor vs. evolutionary psychology on gradualism and saltationism. Mind and Language 18 (5):478-483.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In Chapter Five of The Mind Doesn’t Work That Way, Jerry Fodor argues that since it is likely that human minds evolved quickly as saltations rather than gradually as the product of an accumulation of small mutations, evolutionary psychologists are wrong to think that human minds are adaptations. I argue that Fodor’s requirement that adaptationism entails gradualism is wrongheaded. So, while evolutionary psychologists may be wrong to endorse gradualism—and I argue that they are wrong—it does not follow that they are wrong to endorse an adaptationist explanation for how the human mind evolved
Asendorpf, Jens B. & Penke, Lars (2005). A mature evolutionary psychology demands careful conclusions about sex differences. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 28 (2):275-276.   (Google)
Abstract: By comparing alternative evolutionary models, the International Sexuality Description Project marks the transition of evolutionary psychology to the next level of scientific maturation. The lack of final conclusions might partly be a result of the composition of the Sociosexual Orientation Inventory and the sampled populations. Our own data suggest that correcting for both gives further support to the strategic pluralism model
Barendregt, Marko & Van Hezewijk, René (2005). Adaptive and genomic explanations of human behaviour: Might evolutionary psychology contribute to behavioural genomics? Biology and Philosophy 20 (1):57-78.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: . Evolutionary psychology and behavioural genomics are both approaches to explain human behaviour from a genetic point of view. Nonetheless, thus far the development of these disciplines is anything but interdependent. This paper examines the question whether evolutionary psychology can contribute to behavioural genomics. Firstly, a possible inconsistency between the two approaches is reviewed, viz. that evolutionary psychology focuses on the universal human nature and disregards the genetic variation studied by behavioural genomics. Secondly, we will discuss the structure of biological explanations. Some philosophers rightly acknowledge that explanations do not involve laws which are exceptionless and universal. Instead, generalisations that are invariant suffice for successful explanation as long as two other stipulations are recognised: the domain within which the generalisation has no exceptions as well as the distribution of the mechanism described by the generalisation should both be specified. It is argued that evolutionary psychology can contribute to behavioural genomic explanations by accounting for these two specifications
Barkow, Jerome H. (2000). Our shared species-typical evolutionary psychology. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 23 (1):148-148.   (Google)
Abstract: Because human cultures are far more similar than they are different, culturally constituted niches may work to limit or prevent the development of genetically based psychological differences across populations. The niche approach further implies that we may remain relatively well-adapted to contemporary environments because of the latter's cultural niche continuity with ancient environments
Barkow, Jerome; Cosmides, Leda & Tooby, John (eds.) (1992). The Adapted Mind: Evolutionary Psychology and the Generation of Culture. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 1369 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Second, this collection of cognitive programs evolved in the Pleistocene to solve the adaptive problems regularly faced by our hunter-gatherer ancestors-...
Bering, Jesse M. & Shackelford, Todd K. (2004). The causal role of consciousness: A conceptual addendum to human evolutionary psychology. Review of General Psychology 8 (4):227-248.   (Cited by 36 | Google | More links)
Bering, Jesse M. & Bjorklund, Dave (2007). The serpent's gift: Evolutionary psychology and consciousness. In Philip David Zelazo, Morris Moscovitch & Evan Thompson (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Consciousness. Cambridge.   (Google)
Buller, David J. (online). A Guided Tour of Evolutionary Psychology. A Field Guide to the Philosophy of Mind.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Buller, David J. (2005). Adapting Minds: Evolutionary Psychology and the Persistent Quest for Human Nature. MIT Press.   (Cited by 59 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In the carefully argued central chapters of Adapting Minds, Buller scrutinizes several of evolutionary psychology's most highly publicized "...
Buller, David J. (1999). Defreuding evolutionary psychology: Adaptation and human motivation. In Valerie Gray Hardcastle (ed.), Where Biology Meets Philosophy. MIT Press.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Buller, David J. & Hardcastle, Valerie Gray (2000). Evolutionary psychology, meet developmental neurobiology: Against promiscuous modularity. Brain and Mind 1 (3):307-25.   (Cited by 28 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Evolutionary psychologists claim that the mind contains “hundreds or thousands” of “genetically specified” modules, which are evolutionary adaptations for their cognitive functions. We argue that, while the adult human mind/brain typically contains a degree of modularization, its “modules” are neither genetically specified nor evolutionary adaptations. Rather, they result from the brain’s developmental plasticity, which allows environmental task demands a large role in shaping the brain’s information-processing structures. The brain’s developmental plasticity is our fundamental psychological adaptation, and the “modules” that result from it are adaptive responses to local conditions, not past evolutionary environments. If different individuals share common environ- ments, however, they may develop similar “modules,” and this process can mimic the development of genetically specified modules in the evolutionary psychologist’s sense
Buller, David J. (2005). Evolutionary psychology: The emperor's new paradigm. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 9 (6):277-283.   (Cited by 12 | Google | More links)
Buller, David J. (1997). Individualism and evolutionary psychology (or: In defense of "narrow" functions). Philosophy of Science 64 (1):74-95.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Millikan and Wilson argue, for different reasons, that the essential reference to the environment in adaptationist explanations of behavior makes (psychological) individualism inconsistent with evolutionary psychology. I show that their arguments are based on misinterpretations of the role of reference to the environment in such explanations. By exploring these misinterpretations, I develop an account of explanation in evolutionary psychology that is fully consistent with individualism. This does not, however, constitute a full-fledged defense of individualism, since evolutionary psychology is only one explanatory paradigm among many in psychology
Bulbulia, Joseph (2004). The cognitive and evolutionary psychology of religion. Biology and Philosophy 19 (5).   (Google)
Abstract:   The following reviews recent developments in the cognitive and evolutionary psychology of religion, and argues for an adaptationist stance
Buller, David J. (2007). Varieties of evolutionary psychology. In David L. Hull & Michael Ruse (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to the Philosophy of Biology. Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Buss, David M. (1999). Evolutionary Psychology: The New Science of the Mind. Allyn and Bacon.   (Cited by 876 | Google)
Buss, David M. & Duntley, Joshua (1999). The evolutionary psychology of patriarchy: Women are not passive pawns in men's game. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 22 (2):219-220.   (Google)
Abstract: We applaud Campbell's cogent arguments for the evolution of female survival mechanisms but take issue with several key conceptual claims: the treatment of patriarchy; the implicit assumption that women are passive pawns in a male game of media exploitation; and the neglect of the possibility that media images exploit existing evolved psychological mechanisms rather than create them
by Edouard Machery, reviewed & Clark Barrett, H. (2006). David J. Buller: Adapting minds: Evolutionary psychology and the persistent Quest for human nature,. Philosophy of Science 73 (2):232-246.   (Google)
Abstract: David Buller's recent book, Adapting Minds, is a philosophical critique of the field of evolutionary psychology. Buller argues that evolutionary psychology is utterly bankrupt from both a theoretical and an empirical point of view. Although Adapting Minds has been well received in both the academic press and the popular media, we argue that Buller's critique of evolutionary psychology fails
Cosmides, Leda & Tooby, John (online). Evolutionary psychology: A Primer.   (Cited by 78 | Google | More links)
Cosmides, Leda & Tooby, John (1987). From evolution to behavior: Evolutionary psychology as the missing link. In John Dupre (ed.), The Latest on the Best: Essays on Evolution and Optimality. MIT Press.   (Cited by 197 | Google)
Cummins, Denise D.; Cummins, Robert E. & Poirier, Pierre (2003). Cognitive evolutionary psychology without representational nativism. Journal Of Experimental and Theoretical Artificial Intelligence 15 (2):143-159.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract: A viable evolutionary cognitive psychology requires that specific cognitive capacities be (a) heritable and (b) ‘quasi-independent’ from other heritable traits. They must be heritable because there can be no selection for traits that are not. They must be quasi-independent from other heritable traits, since adaptive variations in a specific cognitive capacity could have no distinctive consequences for fitness if effecting those variations required widespread changes in other unrelated traits and capacities as well. These requirements would be satisfied by innate cognitive modules, as the dominant paradigm in evolutionary cognitive psychology assumes. However, those requirements would also be satisfied by heritable learning biases, perhaps in the form of architec- tural or chronotopic constraints, that operated to increase the canalization of specific cognitive capacities in the ancestral environment (Cummins and Cummins 1999). As an organism develops, cognitive capacities that are highly canalized as the result of heritable learning biases might result in an organism that is behaviourally quite similar to an organism whose innate modules come on line as the result of various environ- mental triggers. Taking this possibility seriously is increasingly important as the case against innate cognitive modules becomes increasingly strong
Davies, Paul Sheldon (1996). Discovering the functional mesh: On the methods of evolutionary psychology. Minds and Machines 6 (4):559-585.   (Cited by 43 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   The aim of this paper is to clarify and critically assess the methods of evolutionary psychology, and offer a sketch of an alternative methodology. My thesis is threefold. (1) The methods of inquiry unique to evolutionary psychology rest upon the claim that the discovery of theadaptive functions of ancestral psychological capacities leads to the discovery of thepsychological functions of those ancestral capacities. (2) But this claim is false; in fact, just the opposite is true. We first must discover the psychological functions of our psychological capacities in order to discover their adaptive functions. Hence the methods distinctive of evolutionary psychology are idle in our search for the mechanisms of the mind. (3) There are good reasons for preferring an alternative to the methods of evolutionary psychology, an alternative that aims to discover the functions of our psychological capacities by appeal to the concept of awhole psychology
Davies, Paul Sheldon (2009). Some evolutionary model or other: Aspirations and evidence in evolutionary psychology. Philosophical Psychology 22 (1):83 – 97.   (Google)
Davies, Paul Sheldon (1999). The conflict of evolutionary psychology. In Valerie Gray Hardcastle (ed.), Where Biology Meets Psychology. MIT Press.   (Cited by 8 | Google)
de JongLooren, Huib & van der Steen, Wim J. (1998). Biological thinking in evolutionary psychology: Rockbottom or quicksand? Philosophical Psychology 11 (2):183-205.   (Google)
De Jong, H. Looren & Van Der Steen, W. J. (1998). Biological thinking in evolutionary psychology: Rockbottom or quicksand? Philosophical Psychology 11 (2):183 – 205.   (Google)
Abstract: Evolutionary psychology is put forward by its defenders as an extension of evolutionary biology, bringing psychology within the integrated causal chain of the hard sciences. It is extolled as a new paradigm for integrating psychology with the rest of science. We argue that such claims misrepresent the methods and explanations of evolutionary biology, and present a distorted view of the consequences that might be drawn from evolutionary biology for views of human nature. General theses about adaptation in biology are empty schemata, not laws of nature allowing the subsumption of mind under biology. Functional thinking is an indispensable tool for psychology, mostly of value in abstractive unification and as a heuristic, but it gains little from association with evolutionary notions of selection. Thus, we argue, the cherished integrative causal model evaporates, and evolutionary phraseology serves no more than rhetorical purposes. Moreover, the universality of human nature and the evolutionary irrelevance of individual variation are presented as biological truths that psychologists should respect in their approach to mind. On closer inspection, this turns out to be rather dubious biology. Psychology might conceivably be better off as a continuation of biology by different means, but evolutionary psychology does not provide the conceptual integration leading to such a happy union
de Jong, Huib Looren (forthcoming). Evolutionary psychology and morality. Review essay. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice.   (Google)
Dietrich, Eric (1994). AI and the tyranny of Galen, or why evolutionary psychology and cognitive ethology are important to artificial intelligence. Journal of Experimental And Theoretical Artificial Intelligence 6 (4):325-330.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Concern over the nature of AI is, for the tastes many AI scientists, probably overdone. In this they are like all other scientists. Working scientists worry about experiments, data, and theories, not foundational issues such as what their work is really about or whether their discipline is methodologically healthy. However, most scientists aren’t in a field that is approximately fifty years old. Even relatively new fields such as nonlinear dynamics or branches of biochemistry are in fact advances in older established sciences and are therefore much more settled. Of course, by stretching things, AI can be said to have a history reaching back t o Charles Babbage, and possibly back beyond that to Leibnitz. However, all of that is best viewed as prelude. AI’s history is punctuated with the invention of the computer (and, if one wants t o stretch our history back to the 1930s, the development of the notion of computation by Turing, Church, and others). Hence, AI really began (or began in earnest) sometime in the late 1940s or early 1950s (some mark the conference a t Dartmouth in the summer of 1957 as the moment of our birth). And since those years we simply have not had time to settle into a routine science attacking reasonably well understood questions (for example, many of the questions some of us regard as supreme are regarded by others as inconsequential or mere excursions)
Downes, Stephen M., Evolutionary psychology, adaptation and design.   (Google)
Abstract: People do lots of things and we have thousands of resources to explain our behavior. The social sciences, widely construed, include explanations of human behavior that invoke culture, religion, beliefs, desires, social institutions, race, gender and so on. In this paper I ignore all such explanations of human behavior. This is not because such explanations are all invalid or inferior, it is because they are not my current focus. A complete account of many components of human behavior will doubtless include reference to all manner of biological and cultural factors. Sarah Hrdy’s (1999) account of motherhood provides an example of the fusion of many different explanatory resources to account for a suite of human behavior. While some may criticize the details of her account, it is hard to deny that the scope of explanatory resources she appeals to is very broad
Ferguson, S. (2002). Methodology in evolutionary psychology. Biology and Philosophy 17 (5):635-50.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Fessler, Daniel (2006). Steps toward an evolutionary psychology of a culture dependent species. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Forster, M. & Shapiro, Lawrence A. (2000). Prediction and accommodation in evolutionary psychology. Psychological Inquiry 11:31-33.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Ketelaar and Ellis have provided a remarkably clear and succinct statement of Lakatosian philosophy of science and have also argued compellingly that the neo-Darwinian theory of evolution fills the Lakatosian criteria of progressivity. We find ourselves in agreement with much of what Ketelaar and Ellis say about Lakatosian philosophy of science, but have some questions about (1) the place of evolutionary psychology in a Lakatosian framework, and (2) the extent to which evolutionary psychology truly predicts new findings
Frankenhuis, Willem E. & Ploeger, Annemie (2007). Evolutionary psychology versus Fodor: Arguments for and against the massive modularity hypothesis. Philosophical Psychology 20 (6):687 – 710.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Evolutionary psychologists tend to view the mind as a large collection of evolved, functionally specialized mechanisms, or modules. Cosmides and Tooby (1994) have presented four arguments in favor of this model of the mind: the engineering argument, the error argument, the poverty of the stimulus argument, and combinatorial explosion. Fodor (2000) has discussed each of these four arguments and rejected them all. In the present paper, we present and discuss the arguments for and against the massive modularity hypothesis. We conclude that Cosmides and Tooby's arguments have considerable force and are too easily dismissed by Fodor
Franks, Bradley (2005). The role of "the environment" in cognitive and evolutionary psychology. Philosophical Psychology 18 (1):59-82.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Evolutionary psychology is widely understood as involving an integration of evolutionary theory and cognitive psychology, in which the former promises to revolutionise the latter. In this paper, I suggest some reasons to doubt that the assumptions of evolutionary theory and of cognitive psychology are as directly compatible as is widely assumed. These reasons relate to three different problems of specifying adaptive functions as the basis for characterising cognitive mechanisms: the disjunction problem, the grain problem and the environment problem. Each of these problems can be understood as arising from incommensurate characterisations of the nature and role of 'the environment' in the two approaches. Purported solutions to the problems appear to require detailed information concerning the EEA (environment of evolutionary adaptedness), with the disjunction problem placing the lowest requirement, the environment problem placing the highest requirement, and the grain problem placing an intermediate one. In each case, such information is not likely to be forthcoming, because it may require iterating through successively more distant EEA's with no principled stopping point. This produces a dilemma for evolutionary psychology - either to solve these apparently insoluble problems, or to attempt to avoid them but in doing so forego detailed evolutionary constraints on cognition
Gangestad, Steven W. & Simpson, Jeffry A. (2000). Trade-offs, the allocation of reproductive effort, and the evolutionary psychology of human mating. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 23 (4):624-636.   (Google)
Abstract: This response reinforces several major themes in our target article: (a) the importance of sex-specific, within-sex variation in mating tactics; (b) the relevance of optimality thinking to understanding that variation; (c) the significance of special design for reconstructing evolutionary history; (d) the replicated findings that women's mating preferences vary across their menstrual cycle in ways revealing special design; and (e) the importance of applying market phenomena to understand the complex dynamics of mating. We also elaborate on three points: (1) Men who have indicators of genetic fitness may provide more direct benefits when female demand for extra-pair and short-term sex is very low; (2) both men and women track ecological cues to make mating decisions; and (3) more research on female orgasm is needed
Gardner, John (online). Evolutionary psychology.   (Google)
Gerrans, Philip (2007). Mechanisms of madness: Evolutionary psychiatry without evolutionary psychology. Biology and Philosophy 22 (1).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Delusions are currently characterised as false beliefs produced by incorrect inference about external reality (DSM IV). This inferential conception has proved hard to link to explanations pitched at the level of neurobiology and neuroanatomy. This paper provides that link via a neurocomputational theory, based on evolutionary considerations, of the role of the prefrontal cortex in regulating offline cognition. When pathologically neuromodulated the prefrontal cortex produces hypersalient experiences which monopolise offline cognition. The result is characteristic psychotic experiences and patterns of thought. This bottom-up account uses neural network theory to integrate recent theories of the role of dopamine in delusion with the insights of inferential accounts. It also provides a general model for evolutionary psychiatry which avoids theoretical problems imported from evolutionary psychology
Gerrans, Philip (2002). The theory of mind module in evolutionary psychology. Biology and Philosophy 17 (3):305-21.   (Cited by 11 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Evolutionary Psychology is based on the idea that the mind is a set of special purpose thinking devices or modules whose domain-specific structure is an adaptation to ancestral environments. The modular view of the mind is an uncontroversial description of the periphery of the mind, the input-output sensorimotor and affective subsystems. The novelty of EP is the claim that higher order cognitive processes also exhibit a modular structure. Autism is a primary case study here, interpreted as a developmental failure of a module devoted to social intelligence or Theory of Mind. In this article I reappraise the arguments for innate modularity of TOM and argue that they fail. TOM ability is a consequence of domain general development scaffolded by early, innately specified, sensorimotor abilities. The alleged Modularity of TOM results from interpreting the outcome of developmental failures characteristic of autism at too high a level of cognitive abstraction
Grantham, Todd A. & Nichols, Shaun (1999). Evolutionary psychology: Ultimate explanations and panglossian predictions. In Valerie Gray Hardcastle (ed.), Where Biology Meets Psychology. MIT Press.   (Cited by 13 | Google)
Grace, C. & Moreland, James P. (2002). Intelligent design psychology and evolutionary psychology on consciousness: Turning water into wine. Journal of Psychology and Theology 30 (1):51-67.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Griffiths, Paul, Dancing in the dark: Evolutionary psychology and the argument from design.   (Google)
Abstract: The Narrow Evolutionary Psychology Movement represents itself as a major reorientation of the social/behavioral sciences, a group of sciences previously dominated by something called the ‘Standard Social Science Model’ (SSSM; Cosmides, Tooby, and Barkow, 1992). Narrow Evolutionary Psychology alleges that the SSSM treated the mind, and particularly those aspects of the mind that exhibit cultural variation, as devoid of any marks of its evolutionary history. Adherents of Narrow Evolutionary Psychology often suggest that the SSSM owed more to ideology than to evidence. It was the child of the 1960s, representing a politically motivated insistence on the possibility of changing social arrangements such as gender roles: ‘Not so long ago jealousy was considered a pointless, archaic institution in need of reform. But like other denials of human nature from the 1960s, this bromide has not aged well.’ (Stephen Pinker, endorsement for Buss, 2000)) This view of history does not ring true to those, like the authors, who have worked in traditions of evolutionary theorizing about the mind that have a continuous history through the 1960s and beyond: traditions such as evolutionary epistemology (Stotz, 1996; Callebaut and Stotz, 1998) and psychoevolutionary research into emotion (Griffiths
Griffiths, Paul (online). Evo-devo meets the mind: Toward a developmental evolutionary psychology.   (Cited by 11 | Google | More links)
Abstract: _The emerging discipline of evolutionary developmental biology has opened up many new _ _lines of investigation into morphological evolution. Here I explore how two of the core _ _theoretical concepts in ‘evo-devo’ – modularity and homology – apply to evolutionary _ _psychology. I distinguish three sorts of module - developmental, functional and mental _ _modules and argue that mental modules need only be ‘virtual’ functional modules. _ _Evolutionary psychologists have argued that separate mental modules are solutions to _ _separate evolutionary problems. I argue that the structure of developmental modules in _ _an organism helps determine what counts as a separate evolutionary problem for that _ _organism. I suggest that homology as an organizing principle for research in _ _evolutionary psychology, has been severely neglected in favor of analogy (adaptive _ _function). I consider some arguments suggesting that determining homology is less _ _epistemically demanding than determining adaptive function and argue that _ _psychological categories defined by homology are, in fact, more suitable objects of _ _psychological - and particularly neuropsychological - investigation than categories _ _defined by analogy. _
Griffiths, Paul E., Evolutionary psychology: History and current status.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: The development of evolutionary approaches to psychology from Classical Ethology through Sociobiology to Evolutionary Psychology is outlined and the main tenets of today's Evolutionary Psychology briefly examined: the heuristic value of evolutionary thinking for psychology, the massive modularity thesis and the monomorphic mind thesis
Griffiths, Paul Edmund, Ethology, sociobiology and evolutionary psychology.   (Google)
Abstract: In the years leading up to the Second World War the ethologists Konrad Lorenz and Nikolaas Tinbergen, created the tradition of rigorous, Darwinian research on animal behavior that developed into modern behavioral ecology. At first glance, research on specifically human behavior seems to exhibit greater discontinuity that research on animal behavior in general. The 'human ethology' of the 1960s appears to have been replaced in the early 1970s by a new approach called ‘sociobiology’. Sociobiology in its turn appears to have been replaced by an approach calling itself Evolutionary Psychology. Closer examination, however, reveals a great deal of continuity between these schools. At present, whilst Evolutionary Psychology is the most visible form of evolutionary psychology, empirical and theoretical research on the evolution of mind and behavior is marked by a diversity of ideas and approaches and it is far from clear which direction(s) the field will take in future
Hales, Steven D. (2009). Moral relativism and evolutionary psychology. Synthese 166 (2).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: I argue that evolutionary strategies of kin selection and game-theoretic reciprocity are apt to generate agent-centered and agent- neutral moral intuitions, respectively. Such intuitions are the building blocks of moral theories, resulting in a fundamental schism between agent-centered theories on the one hand and agent-neutral theories on the other. An agent-neutral moral theory is one according to which everyone has the same duties and moral aims, no matter what their personal interests or interpersonal relationships. Agent-centered moral theories deny this and include at least some prescriptions that include ineliminable indexicals. I argue that there are no rational means of bridging the gap between the two types of theories; nevertheless this does not necessitate skepticism about the moral—we might instead opt for an ethical relativism in which the truth of moral statements is relativized to the perspective of moral theories on either side of the schism. Such a relativism does not mean that any ethical theory is as good as any other; some cannot be held in reflective equilibrium, and even among those that can, there may well be pragmatic reasons that motivate the selection of one theory over another. But if no sort of relativism is deemed acceptable, then it is hard to avoid moral skepticism
Hampton, Simon J. (2006). Can evolutionary psychology learn from the instinct debate? History of the Human Sciences 19 (4):57-74.   (Google)
Haufe, Chris (2008). Sexual selection and mate choice in evolutionary psychology. Biology and Philosophy 23 (1).   (Google)
Abstract: The importance of mate choice and sexual selection has been emphasized by the majority of evolutionary psychologists. This paper assesses three cases of work on mate choice and sexual selection in evolutionary psychology: David Buss on cross-cultural human mate preferences, Randy Thornhill and Steve Gangestad on the link between mate preferences and fluctuating asymmetry, and Geoffrey Miller on the role of Fisher’s runaway process in human evolution. A mixture of conceptual and empirical problems in each case highlights the general weakness of work in evolutionary psychology on these issues
Holcomb Iii, Harmon R. (1996). Just so stories and inference to the best explanation in evolutionary psychology. Minds and Machines 6 (4):525-540.   (Google)
Holcomb, Harmon R. (1996). Just so stories and inference to the best explanation in evolutionary psychology. Minds and Machines 6 (4).   (Google)
Abstract:   Evolutionary psychology is a science in the making, working toward the goal of showing how psychological adaptation underlies much human behavior. The knee-jerk reaction that sociobiology is unscientific because it tells just-so stories has become a common charge against evolutionary psychology as well. My main positive thesis is that inference to the best explanation is a proper method for evolutionary analyses, and it supplies a new perspective on the issues raised in Schlinger's (1996) just-so story critique. My main negative thesis is that, like many nonevolutionist critics, Schlinger's objections arise from misunderstandings of the evolutionary approach.Evolutionary psychology has progressed beyond telling just-so stories. It has found a host of ingenious special techniques to test hypotheses about the adaptive significance and proximate mechanisms of behavior. Naturalistic data using the comparative method combined with controlled tests using statistical analyses of data provide good evidence for a variety of hypotheses about behavioral control mechanisms — whether in nonhumans or in humans. For instance, the work of Gangestad and Thornhill on evolved mate preferences and fluctuating asymmetry of body type (FA) is a model of success. As the quantity and quality of evidence increase, we are entitled not just to regard such evolutionary hypotheses as preferable, but also as true. Such studies combine to show that the best explanation of the psychic unity of humankind — common patterns across societies, history, and cultures exposed by evolutionists — is the gendered, adapted, evolved species-typical design of the mind
Horne, Christine (2004). Values and evolutionary psychology. Sociological Theory 22 (3):477-503.   (Google | More links)
Humphrey, Nicholas (ms). Great expectations: The evolutionary psychology of faith- healing and the placebo effect.   (Google)
Abstract: I said that the cure itself is a certain leaf, but in addition to the drug there is a certain charm, which if someone chants when he makes use of it, the medicine altogether restores him to health, but without the charm there is no profit from the leaf
Jackson, John, Definitional argument in evolutionary psychology and cultural anthropology.   (Google)
Abstract: An old aphorism claims that “The person who defines the terms of the debate can win it.” This paper argues that the debate between evolutionary psychologists and cultural anthropologists over the biological explanation of human behavior is framed by a larger definitional dispute over the question, “What is culture?” Both disciplines attempt to define “culture” to build their disciplines, but were engaged in different kinds of arguments by definition. Definitional arguments often take one of two forms. A real definition takes the form “What is X?” In this view, we should use the word “X” in a particular way because that is what X really is. The other form of definitional argument, pragmatic definition, takes the form, “How should we use the term X?” In this view, an arguer puts for reasons for using the term “X” in a particular way. Evolutionary psychologists are engaged in argument by real definition. In their “manifesto” for evolutionary psychology, Tooby and Cosmides argue that the explanations of social or cultural behavior in the social sciences are “incoherent” because they attempt to explain such behavior “psychological phenomena without describing or even mentioning the evolved mechanisms their theories would require to be complete or coherent” (p.37). Because humans are biological creatures, cultural explanations must include biology because culture really is biological. Hence, biology is a necessary part of explanations of human culture. Cultural anthropologists engaged in argument by persuasive definition. A close examination of Kroeber’s writings reveals, however, that he readily acknowledged that humans were biological and culture rested on a biological foundation. He argued that we should treat culture as autonomous in our explanatory schemes because that would bring benefits to the biological sciences as well as the human sciences. In his writings, Kroeber reveals himself as a staunch Darwinian who argues for the autonomy of cultural anthropology on pragmatic, not on ontological grounds. Hence, the historical caricature of his work by evolutionary psychology fails
Jones, Mostyn W. (1995). Inadequacies in current theories of imagination. Southern Journal of Philosophy 33 (3):313-333.   (Google)
Abstract: Interest in imagination dates back to Plato and Aristotle, but full-length works have been devoted to it only relatively recently by Sartre, McKellar, Furlong, Casey, Johnson, Warnock, Brann, and others. Despite their length and variety, however, these current theories take overly narrow views of this complex phenomenon. (1) Their definitions of “imagination” neglect the multiplicity of its meanings and tend to focus narrowly on the power of imaging alone (which produces images and imagery). But imagination in the fullest, most encompassing sense centers instead on creativity, which involves both imaging and reasoning powers. (2) Current accounts of the operations of imagination narrowly construe it in fixed, immutable terms. But it’s instead a dynamic, evolving synergy of its psychological roots (images and symbols) and sociobiological roots (cultures and instincts). This synergy has transformed the roles of images and symbols in imagination (as Vygotsky, Goody, etc. note). For example, in the shift from mytheopic to scientific imagination, literacy and formal education fostered abstract symbolic thinking (reason), which differs from mytheopic thinking based on richly concrete associations (imagery). The result was “more than cool reason”, but experimental studies (by Perkins, Clement, etc.) show that it’s also more than just dreamy imagery. It’s a dynamic synergy of the two that has transformed both. (3) Current evaluations of imagination’s potentials are also narrow. They tend to focus on its role in mental life while ignoring social and political life. Also, they tend to follow romantic and existentialist customs of extolling imagination’s virtues without soberly critiquing its limitations. Again, they ignore the synergy of psychological, sociological and biological forces that shape mental and social evolution, and promote and constrain imagination in complex ways. For example, Sartre surreally asks us to choose our own nature with an imagination emancipated from institutional and instinctual strictures. Yet making intelligible choices depends on these strictures. (4) In conclusion, current theories define imagination narrowly in terms of imaging, they describe its operations in fixed and immutable terms, and they evaluate its potentials without examining the full interplay of forces shaping it. These shortcomings are remedied by a broader perspective that defines imagination more adequately and comprehensively, and that recognizes it’s complex roots, dynamic operations, and evolving potentials.
Krellenstein, Marc F. (ms). What have we learned from evolutionary psychology?   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Evolutionary psychology claims biological inclinations for certain behaviors (e.g., a desire for more frequent sex and more sexual partners by males as compared to females), and the origin of these inclinations in natural selection. Jerry Fodor’s recent book, The Mind Doesn’t Work that Way (2000), grants the nativist case for such biological grounding but disputes the presumed certainty of its origin in natural selection. Nevertheless, there is today a consensus that at least some of the claims of evolutionary psychology are true, and their broad appeal suggests that many see them as easy insights into and possible license for some controversial behaviors. Evolutionary psychologists, on the other hand, caution that an origin in natural selection implies only an inclination for certain behaviors, and not that the behaviors will be true of all people, will lead to happiness or are morally correct. But such cautions can be as facile as the simplistic positions they are intended to counter. A biological basis implies tendencies to behaviors that will be pleasurable when engaged in, and that can be modified to an extent and at a psychic cost that is, at best, not fully understood. Also, while it is true that naturally selected behaviors are not necessarily moral, the implications of current evolutionary psychology cast doubt on any absolute foundation for morality at all, as well as suggesting limits on our ability to fully understand both ourselves and the universe around us. However, this does not mean that our (relative) values or apparent free will are any less real or important for us
Kruttschnitt, Candace (1999). Do we owe it all to Darwin? The adequacy of evolutionary psychology as an explanation for gender differences in aggression. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 22 (2):228-229.   (Google)
Abstract: Gender differences in aggression are highly variable; there is significant evidence that this variability is as much a function of social and cultural conditions as evolutionary processes. While some of these conditions may reflect resource scarcities as Campbell proposes, others are inconsistent with her perspective or are explained equally well by other perspectives
Leiber, Justin (2006). Instinctive incest avoidance: A paradigm case for evolutionary psychology evaporates. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 36 (4):369–388.   (Google | More links)
Leiber, Justin (2008). The Wiles of evolutionary psychology and the indeterminacy of selection. Philosophical Forum 39 (1):53–72.   (Google | More links)
Levy, Neil (2004). Evolutionary psychology, human universals, and the standard social science model. Biology and Philosophy 19 (3):459-72.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Proponents of evolutionary psychology take the existence of humanuniversals to constitute decisive evidence in favor of their view. Ifthe same social norms are found in culture after culture, we have goodreason to believe that they are innate, they argue. In this paper Ipropose an alternative explanation for the existence of humanuniversals, which does not depend on them being the product of inbuiltpsychological adaptations. Following the work of Brian Skyrms, I suggestthat if a particular convention possesses even a very small advantageover competitors, whatever the reason for that advantage, we shouldexpect it to become the norm almost everywhere. Tiny advantages aretranslated into very large basins of attraction, in the language of gametheory. If this is so, universal norms are not evidence for innatepsychological adaptations at all. Having shown that the existence ofuniversals is consistent with the so-called Standard Social ScienceModel, I turn to a consideration of the evidence, to show that thisstyle of explanation is preferable to the evolutionary explanation, atleast with regard to patterns of gender inequality
Lloyd, Elisabeth A. (1999). Evolutionary psychology: The burdens or proof. Biology and Philosophy 14 (2):211-33.   (Cited by 56 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   I discuss two types of evidential problems with the most widely touted experiments in evolutionary psychology, those performed by Leda Cosmides and interpreted by Cosmides and John Tooby. First, and despite Cosmides and Tooby's claims to the contrary, these experiments don't fulfil the standards of evidence of evolutionary biology. Second Cosmides and Tooby claim to have performed a crucial experiment, and to have eliminated rival approaches. Though they claim that their results are consistent with their theory but contradictory to the leading non-evolutionary alternative, Pragmatic Reasoning Schemas theory, I argue that this claim is unsupported. In addition, some of Cosmides and Tooby's interpretations arise from misguided and simplistic understandings of evolutionary biology. While I endorse the incorporation of evolutionary approaches into psychology, I reject the claims of Cosmides and Tooby that a modular approach is the only one supported by evolutionary biology. Lewontin's critical examinations of the applications of adaptationist thinking provide a background of evidentiary standards against which to view the currently fashionable claims of evolutionary psychology
Machery, Edouard (web). Discovery and confirmation in evolutionary psychology. In Jesse J. Prinz (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Psychology. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The defining insight of evolutionary psychology consists of bringing considerations drawn from evolutionary biology to bear on the study of human psychology. So characterized, evolutionary psychology encompasses a large range of views about the nature and evolution of human psychology as well as diverging opinions about the proper method for studying them.1 In this article, I propose to clarify and evaluate various aspects of evolutionary psychologists’ methodology, with a special focus on their heuristics of discovery—i.e., their methods for developing plausible hypotheses—and their strategies of confirmation—i.e., their methods for providing empirical support for these hypotheses.2 I will also evaluate several well-known objections raised against evolutionary psychology. Note that because views about psychology and evolution differ among evolutionary psychologists, I do not pretend to cover every method used in evolutionary psychology.3
Maffie, James (1998). Atran's evolutionary psychology: “Say it ain't just-so, joe”. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 21 (4):583-584.   (Google)
Abstract: Atran advances three theses: our folk-biological taxonomy is (1) universal, (2) innate, and (3) the product of natural selection. I argue that Atran offers insufficient support for theses (2) and (3) and that his evolutionary psychology thus amounts to nothing more than a just-so story
Mallon, Ronald & Stich, Stephen P. (2000). The odd couple: The compatibility of social construction and evolutionary psychology. Philosophy Of Science 67 (1):133-154.   (Cited by 14 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Evolutionary psychology and social constructionism are widely regarded as fundamentally irreconcilable approaches to the social sciences. Focusing on the study of the emotions, we argue that this appearance is mistaken. Much of what appears to be an empirical disagreement between evolutionary psychologists and social constructionists over the universality or locality of emotional phenomena is actually generated by an implicit philosophical dispute resulting from the adoption of different theories of meaning and reference. We argue that once this philosophical dispute is recognized, it can be set to the side. When this is done, it becomes clear that the two approaches to the emotions complement, rather than compete with, one another
Mameli, Matteo (online). Sociobiology, evolutionary psychology, and adaptive thinking.   (Google)
Meijer, Danielle (2007). Adapting minds: Evolutionary psychology and the persistent Quest for human nature. Review of Metaphysics 61 (1):124-125.   (Google)
Morin, Alain (ms). Evolutionary psychology.   (Google)
Abstract: A review of The Face in the Mirror: The Search for the Origins of Consciousness by Julian Paul Keenan with Gordon C. Gallup Jr. and Dean Falk. Ecco, New York, 2003. ISBN 006001279X
Mullen, John T. (2007). Can evolutionary psychology confirm original sin? Faith and Philosophy 24 (3):268-283.   (Google)
Abstract: Christian responses to the developing field of evolutionary psychology tend to be defensive, focusing on the task of showing that Christians have not beenpresented with any reason to abandon any central beliefs of the Christian faith. A more positive response would seek to show that evolutionary psychologycan provide some sort of epistemic support for one or more distinctively Christian doctrines. This paper is an attempt to supply such a response by focusing on the distinctively Christian doctrine of original sin, which presents itself as an especially likely candidate for support from evolutionary psychology. I consider five versions of the doctrine in order of increasing content, arguing that all but the last can receive such support. However, in order to argue for the fourth version (which includes the doctrine traditionally described as “original guilt”), I enlist the aid of a Molinist understanding of divine providence. A consequence of this application of Molinism is that God holds us morally accountable, not only for what we actually do, but also for what we would do in any non-actual conditions, and that He acts on His knowledge of what we would do in such conditions. Because many may find this consequence problematic, I also argue that it is both morally acceptableand necessary for the perfection of the relationship between God and human beings. The last version of original sin that I consider insists that it must be thecausal product of the first sin of the first human being(s), but I argue that this is not a reasonable alternative if original sin is to be equated with behavioraltendencies inherited from an evolutionary ancestry
Murphy, Dominic (2000). Darwin in the madhouse: Evolutionary psychology and the classification of mental disorders. Evolution and the Human Mind.   (Cited by 25 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Recent years have witnessed a ground swell of interest in the application of evolutionary theory to issues in psychopathology (Nesse & Williams 1995, Stevens & Price 1996, McGuire & Troisi 1998). Much of this work has been aimed at finding adaptationist explanations for a variety of mental disorders ranging from phobias to depression to schizophrenia. There has, however, been relatively little discussion of the implications that the theories proposed by evolutionary psychologists might have for the classification of mental disorders. This is the theme we propose to explore. We'll begin, in Section 2, by providing a brief overview of the account of the mind advanced by evolutionary psychologists. In Section 3 we'll explain why issues of taxonomy are important and why the dominant approach to the classification of mental disorders is radically and alarmingly unsatisfactory. We will also indicate why we think an alternative approach, based on theories in evolutionary psychology, is particularly promising. In Section 4 we'll try to illustrate some of the virtues of the evolutionary psychological approach to classification. The discussion in Section 4 will highlight a quite fundamental distinction between those disorders that arise from the malfunction of a component of the mind and those that can be traced to the fact that our minds must now function in environments that are very different from the environments in which they evolved. This mis-match between the current and ancestral environments can, we maintain, give rise to serious mental disorders despite the fact that, in one important sense, there is nothing at all wrong with the people suffering the disorder. Their minds are functioning exactly as Mother Nature intended them to. In Section 5, we'll give a brief overview of some of the ways in which the sorts of malfunctions catalogued in Section 4 might arise, and sketch two rather different strategies for incorporating this etiologically
Nanay, Bence (online). Evolutionary psychology and the selectionist model of neural development: A combined approach.   (Google)
Abstract: Evolution and Cognition 8 (2002) pp. 200-206. [abstract] [full text]
Over, David E. (2002). The rationality of evolutionary psychology. In Jose Luis Bermudez & Alan Millar (eds.), Reason and Nature. Clarendon.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Palmer, Craig T.; Steadman, Lyle B.; Cassidy, Chris & Coe, Kathryn (2008). Totemism, metaphor and tradition: Incorporating cultural traditions into evolutionary psychology explanations of religion. Zygon 43 (3):719-735.   (Google)
Abstract: Totemism, a topic that fascinated and then was summarily dismissed by anthropologists, has been resurrected by evolutionary psychologists' recent attempts to explain religion. New approaches to religion are all based on the assumption that religious behavior is the result of evolved psychological mechanisms. We focus on two aspects of Totemism that may present challenges to this view. First, if religious behavior is simply the result of evolved psychological mechanisms, would it not spring forth anew each generation from an individual's psychological mechanisms? Yet, Australian Totemism, like other forms of Totemism, is profoundly traditional, copied by one generation from the prior ones for hundreds of generations. Regardless of personal inclinations, individuals are obligated to participate. Second, it is problematic to assume that all practitioners of Totemism actually believe their religious claims. We propose an alternative explanation that accounts for the persistence of Totemism and that does not rely on an assumption that its practitioners are preliterate or naive because they have strange beliefs. We focus on Totemism as a cultural mechanism aimed at building and sustaining social relationships among close and distant kinsmen
Quartz, Steven; Sullivan, Jackie; Machamer, Peter & Scarantino, Andrea, Session 5: Development, neuroscience and evolutionary psychology.   (Google)
Abstract: Proceedings of the Pittsburgh Workshop in History and Philosophy of Biology, Center for Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh, March 23-24 2001 Session 5: Development, Neuroscience and Evolutionary Psychology
Ratcliffe, Matthew (2005). An epistemological problem for evolutionary psychology. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 19 (1):47-63.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This article draws out an epistemological tension implicit in Cosmides and Tooby's conception of evolutionary psychology. Cosmides and Tooby think of the mind as a collection of functionally individuated, domain-specific modules. Although they do not explicitly deny the existence of domain-general processes, it will be shown that their methodology commits them to the assumption that only domain-specific cognitive processes are capable of producing useful outputs. The resultant view limits the scope of biologically possible cognitive accomplishments and these limitations, it will be argued, are such as to deny us epistemic capacities that evolutionary psychology presupposes in its pursuit of an objective, comprehensive account of human nature
Richardson, Robert C. (1996). The prospects for an evolutionary psychology: Human language and human reasoning. Minds and Machines 6 (4):541-557.   (Cited by 14 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Evolutionary psychology purports to explain human capacities as adaptations to an ancestral environment. A complete explanation of human language or human reasoning as adaptations depends on assessing an historical claim, that these capacities evolved under the pressure of natural selection and are prevalent because they provided systematic advantages to our ancestors. An outline of the character of the information needed in order to offer complete adaptation explanations is drawn from Robert Brandon (1990), and explanations offered for the evolution of language and reasoning within evolutionary psychology are evaluated. Pinker and Bloom's (1992) defense of human language as an adaptation for verbal communication, Robert Nozick's (1993) account of the evolutionary origin of rationality, and Cosmides and Tooby's (1992) explanation of human reasoning as an adaptation for social exchange, are discussed in light of what is known, and what is not known, about the history of human evolution. In each case, though a plausible case is made that these capacities are adaptations, there is not enough known to offer even a semblance of an explanation of the origin of these capacities. These explanations of the origin of human thought and language are simply speculations lacking the kind of detailed historical information required for an evolutionary explanation of an adaptation
Rosen, Steven M. (1999). Evolution of Attentional Processes in the Human Organism. Group Analysis 32 (2):243-253.   (Google)
Abstract: This article explores the evolution of human attention, focusing particularly on the phylogenetic and ontogenetic implications of the work of the American social psychiatrist Trigant Burrow. Attentional development is linked to the emergence of visual perspective, and this, in turn, is related to Burrow's notion of `ditention' (divided or partitive attention). Burrow's distinction between `ditention' and `cotention' (total organismic awareness) is examined, and, expanding on this, a threefold pattern of perceptual change is identified: prototention-->ditention-->cotention. Next, ditentive visual perspective is related to binocular convergence, and the author makes use of the perspectivally ambiguous, `non-convergent' Gestalt figure known as the Necker Cube to illustrate cotention. The paper concludes by proposing that the shift from the currently pervasive ditentive pattern of awareness to a cotentive mode could have a salutary effect on human society.
Ross, Don & Spurrett, David (2006). Evolutionary psychology and functionally empty metaphors. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 29 (2):192-193.   (Google)
Abstract: Lea & Webley's (L&W's) non-exclusive distinction between tool-like and drug-like motivators is insufficiently discriminating to say much about money that is useful, as the distinction's equivocal application to sex, food, and drugs shows. Further, it appears as though the motivations of problem gamblers are non-metaphorically like those of drug addicts. (Published Online April 5 2006)
Ryan, Christopher & Jethá, Cacilda (2005). Universal human traits: The holy grail of evolutionary psychology. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 28 (2):292-293.   (Google)
Abstract: Although the search for universal human traits is necessarily the principle focus of researchers in evolutionary psychology, the habitual reliance on undergraduate students introduces profound doubts concerning resulting data. Furthermore, the absence of relevant data from foraging societies undermines claims of cross-cultural universality in this paper and in many others
Samuels, Richard (1998). Evolutionary psychology and the massive modularity hypothesis. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 49 (4):575-602.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In recent years evolutionary psychologists have developed and defended the Massive Modularity Hypothesis, which maintains that our cognitive architecture—including the part that subserves ‘central processing’ —is largely or perhaps even entirely composed of innate, domain-specific computational mechanisms or ‘modules’. In this paper I argue for two claims. First, I show that the two main arguments that evolutionary psychologists have offered for this general architectural thesis fail to provide us with any reason to prefer it to a competing picture of the mind which I call the Library Model of Cognition. Second, I argue that this alternative model is compatible with the central theoretical and methodological commitments of evolutionary psychology. Thus I argue that, at present, the endorsement of the Massive Modularity Hypothesis by evolutionary psychologists is both unwarranted and unmotivated
Samuels, Richard (2000). Massively modular minds: Evolutionary psychology and cognitive architecture. Evolution and the Human Mind.   (Cited by 28 | Google)
Abstract: What are the elements from which the human mind is composed? What structures make up our _cognitive architecture?_ One of the most recent and intriguing answers to this question comes from the newly emerging interdisciplinary field of evolutionary psychology. Evolutionary psychologists defend a _massively modular_ conception of mental architecture which views the mind –including those parts responsible for such ‘central processes’ as belief revision and reasoning— as composed largely or perhaps even entirely of innate, special-purpose computational mechanisms or ‘modules’ that have been shaped by natural selection to handle the sorts of recurrent information processing problems that confronted our hunter-gatherer forebears (Cosmides and Tooby,192; Sperber, 1994; Samuels, 1998a)
Scher, S. J. & Rauscher, F. (2002). Evolutionary Psychology: Alternative Perspectives. Kluwer.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Schmaus, Warren (2003). Is Durkheim the enemy of evolutionary psychology? Philosophy of the Social Sciences 33 (1).   (Google)
Abstract: an exemplar of an approach that takes the human mind to be largely the product of social and cultural factors with negligible contributions from biology. The author argues that on the contrary, his sociological theory of the categories is compatible with the possibility of innate cognitive capacities, taking causal cognition as his example. Whether and to what extent there are such innate capacities is a question for research in the cognitive neurosciences. The extent to which these innate capacities can then be explained by natural selection remains an open question for empirical investigation. Key Words: categories • causality • cognition • Durkheim • evolutionary psychology
Schachner, Dory A.; Scheib, Joanna E.; Gillath, Omri & Shaver, Phillip R. (2005). Worldwide, economic development and gender equality correlate with liberal sexual attitudes and behavior: What does this tell us about evolutionary psychology? Behavioral and Brain Sciences 28 (2):293-294.   (Google)
Abstract: Shortcomings in the target article preclude adequate tests of developmental/attachment and strategic pluralism theories. Methodological problems include comparing college student attitudes with societal level indicators that may not reflect life conditions of college students. We show, through two principal components analyses, that multiple tests of the theories reduce to only two findings that cannot be interpreted as solid support for evolutionary hypotheses
Shapiro, Larry (web). Evolutionary psychology. In E. Craig (ed.), Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Routledge.   (Google)
Shalizi, Cosma, Evolutionary psychology.   (Google)
Abstract: The study of how our minds have evolved, and the traces left by that evolution. The most important seems to be that we don't have a general, content-neutral intelligence, but a gang or collection of specialized intelligences bent and stretched into unnatural poses for things like math. Logically, all this is quite separate from the question of whether or not we use evolutionary processes in our thinking, whether the mind is a Darwin machine, but I think all the advocates of the latter support evolutionary psychology as well
Silvers, Stuart (2007). Adaptation, plasticity, and massive modularity in evolutionary psychology: An eassy on David Buller's adapting minds. Philosophical Psychology 20 (6):793 – 813.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Adapting Minds: Evolutionary Psychology and the Persistent Quest for Human Nature DAVID BULLER Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2005 564 pages, ISBN: 0262025795 (hbk); $37.00
Stich, Stephen P. & Mallon, Ron (2000). The odd couple: The compatibility of social construction and evolutionary psychology. Philosophy of Science 67 (1):133-154.   (Google)
Abstract: Evolutionary psychology and social constructionism are widely regarded as fundamentally irreconcilable approaches to the social sciences. Focusing on the study of the emotions, we argue that this appearance is mistaken. Much of what appears to be an empirical disagreement between evolutionary psychologists and social constructionists over the universality or locality of emotional phenomena is actually generated by an implicit philosophical dispute resulting from the adoption of different theories of meaning and reference. We argue that once this philosophical dispute is recognized, it can be set to the side. When this is done, it becomes clear that the two approaches to the emotions complement, rather than compete with, one another
Stotz, K. C. & Griffiths, Paul E. (2002). Dancing in the dark: Evolutionary psychology and the argument from design. In S. J. Scher & F. Rauscher (eds.), Evolutionary Psychology: Alternative Approaches. Kluwer.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The Narrow Evolutionary Psychology Movement represents itself as a major reorientation of the social/behavioral sciences, a group of sciences previously dominated by something called the ‘Standard Social Science Model’ (SSSM; Cosmides, Tooby, and Barkow, 1992). Narrow Evolutionary Psychology alleges that the SSSM treated the mind, and particularly those aspects of the mind that exhibit cultural variation, as devoid of any marks of its evolutionary history. Adherents of Narrow Evolutionary Psychology often suggest that the SSSM owed more to ideology than to evidence. It was the child of the 1960s, representing a politically motivated insistence on the possibility of changing social arrangements such as gender roles:
‘Not so long ago jealousy was considered a pointless, archaic institution in need
of reform. But like other denials of human nature from the 1960s, this bromide
has not aged well.’ (Stephen Pinker, endorsement for Buss, 2000))
This view of history does not ring true to those, like the authors, who have worked in traditions of evolutionary theorizing about the mind that have a continuous history through the 1960s and beyond: traditions such as evolutionary epistemology (Stotz, 1996; Callebaut and Stotz, 1998) and psychoevolutionary research into emotion (Griffiths
Stone, Valerie E. (2002). Footloose and fossil-free no more: Evolutionary psychology needs archaeology. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (3):420-421.   (Google)
Abstract: Evolutionary theories of human cognition should refer to specific times in the primate or hominid past. Though alternative accounts of tool manufacture from Wynn's are possible (e.g., frontal lobe function), Wynn demonstrates the power of archaeology to guide cognitive theories. Many cognitive abilities evolved not in the “Pleistocene hunter-gatherer” context, but earlier, in the context of other patterns of social organization and foraging
Sufka, Kenneth J. & Turner, Derek D. (2005). An evolutionary account of chronic pain: Integrating the natural method in evolutionary psychology. Philosophical Psychology 18 (2):243-257.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper offers an evolutionary account of chronic pain. Chronic pain is a maladaptive by-product of pain mechanisms and neural plasticity, both of which are highly adaptive. This account shows how evolutionary psychology can be integrated with Flanagan's natural method, and in a way that avoids the usual charges of panglossian adaptationism and an uncritical commitment to a modular picture of the mind. Evolutionary psychology is most promising when it adopts a bottom-up research strategy that focuses on basic affective and motivational systems (as opposed to higher cognitive functions) that are phylogenetically deep
Suplizio, Jean (2007). On the significance of William James to a contemporary doctrine of evolutionary psychology. Human Studies 30 (4).   (Google)
Abstract: Academic popularizers of the new field of evolutionary psychology make notable appeals to William James to bolster their doctrine. In particular, they cite James’ remark that humans have all the “impulses” animals do and many more besides to shore up their claim that people’s “instincts” account for their flexibility. This essay argues that these scholars misinterpret James on the instincts. Consciousness (which they find inscrutable) explains cognitive flexibility for James. The evolutionary psychologists’ appeal to James is, therefore, unwarranted and, given the conditions relevant to the public and professional audiences they address, also ineffective as a rhetorical tool for enlisting new recruits
Thompson, Nicholas S. (2000). Evolutionary psychology can ill afford adaptionist and mentalist credulity. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 23 (6):1013-1014.   (Google)
Abstract: The idea that dreams function as fright-simulations rests on the adaptionist notion that anything that has form has function, and psychological argument relies on the mentalist assumption that dream reports are accurate reports of experienced events. Neither assumption seems adequately supported by the evidence presented. [Revonsuo]
Toates, Frederick (2005). Evolutionary psychology -- towards a more integrative model. Biology and Philosophy 20 (2-3):305-328.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Aspects of the history of behavioural science are reviewed, pointing to its fragmented and faction-ridden nature. The emergence of evolutionary psychology (EP) is viewed in this context. With the help of a dual-layered model of behavioural control, the case is made for a more integrative perspective towards EP. The model's application to both behaviour and complex human information processing is described. Similarities in their control are noted. It is suggested that one layer of control (‘on-line’) corresponds to the encapsulated modules of EP whereas the off-line controls provide the plasticity and flexibility suggested by its critics
Tooby, John & Cosmides, Leda (2007). Evolutionary psychology, ecological rationality, and the unification of the behavioral sciences. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 30 (1):42-43.   (Google)
Abstract: For two decades, the integrated causal model of evolutionary psychology (EP) has constituted an interdisciplinary nucleus around which a single unified theoretical and empirical behavioral science has been crystallizing – while progressively resolving problems (such as defective logical and statistical reasoning) that bedevil Gintis's beliefs, preferences, and constraints (BPC) framework. Although both frameworks are similar, EP is empirically better supported, theoretically richer, and offers deeper unification. (Published Online April 27 2007)
Voracek, Martin (2005). Shortcomings of the sociosexual orientation inventory: Can psychometrics inform evolutionary psychology? Behavioral and Brain Sciences 28 (2):296-297.   (Google)
Abstract: Simpson and Gangestad's (1991) Sociosexual Orientation Inventory (SOI) is pivotal in Schmitt's cross-national study on sociosexuality. Here I elaborate on psychometric shortcomings of the SOI that are crucial in this research context
Ward, Chuck, Evolutionary psychology and the problem of neural plasticity.   (Google)
Abstract: Evolutionary psychology as commonly presented is committed to the view that our cognitive architecture consists of a set of genetically pre-specified, domain specific, computational modules that are adaptations to the environment of our Pleistocene ancestors. These commitments yield a picture in which the underlying computational design of the human mind is genetically transmitted while cultural variation results from differential experiential inputs being processed through this common architecture. This view has been criticized from a developmental point of view. This paper develops some of those criticisms specifically as they relate to the plasticity of neural structures and their responsiveness to social interactions. In best case scenarios the confirmation of adaptive explanations involves identifying the specific causal mechanisms of selection. This is illustrated in examples from ecological genetics. This is not possible in the case of evolutionary psychology. Instead claims that certain computational modules evolved as adaptations in the ancestral environment are supported by their cross-cultural occurrence in modern populations. However, evidence suggests that behavior itself, and cultural practices, are factors that influence the development of neural structures and the cognitive processes they instantiate. So while genes are playing a role in the development of the brain, they do not really encode its neural architecture. When selection favors one set of neural characteristics over alternatives, the genes that played a role in the development of those structures are passed on. But this does not guarantee replication of the structures themselves. What is being selected? Not genes, but organisms with certain neurological and behavioral tendencies in particular environments. Variation in the genetic determinants of neurological structure is not a necessary condition for natural selection to act on behavior. The necessary condition, as Darwin originally put the point, is that traits are heritable. Certainly heritability implies some genetic transmission between generations. But heritability of neural structure requires more than a genetic determinant because neural structures are so plastic. Some regulation of the experiential environment in which those genes act is also necessary. This suggests that an adequate account of the evolution of behavior requires a multi-level approach that recognizes that gene action and social behavior are related by a kind of causal reciprocity. Such an account would be quite different than the evolutionary psychologists’ model of culture being layered over the top of an underlying cognitive computer that is genetically propagated
Wilson, David Sloan & Miller, Ralph R. (2002). Altruism, evolutionary psychology, and learning. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (2):281-282.   (Google)
Abstract: Rachlin's substantive points about the relationship between altruism and self-control are obscured by simplistic and outdated portrayals of evolutionary psychology in relation to learning theory
Wilson, David Sloan; Dietrich, Eric & Clark, Anne B. (2003). On the inappropriate use of the naturalistic fallacy in evolutionary psychology. Biology and Philosophy 18 (5):669-81.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   The naturalistic fallacy is mentionedfrequently by evolutionary psychologists as anerroneous way of thinking about the ethicalimplications of evolved behaviors. However,evolutionary psychologists are themselvesconfused about the naturalistic fallacy and useit inappropriately to forestall legitimateethical discussion. We briefly review what thenaturalistic fallacy is and why it is misusedby evolutionary psychologists. Then we attemptto show how the ethical implications of evolvedbehaviors can be discussed constructivelywithout impeding evolutionary psychologicalresearch. A key is to show how ethicalbehaviors, in addition to unethical behaviors,can evolve by natural selection

7.1c.2 Evolution of Cognition, Misc

García, Claudia Lorena (2007). Cognitive Modularity, Biological Modularity and Evolvability. Biological Theory: Integrating Development, Evolution and Cognition (KLI) 2 (1):62-73.   (Google)
Abstract: There is an argument that has recently been deployed in favor of thinking that the mind is mostly (or even exclusively) composed of cognitive modules; an argument that draws from some ideas and concepts of evolutionary and of developmental biology. In a nutshell, the argument concludes that a mind that is massively composed of cognitive mechanisms that are cognitively modular (henceforth, c-modular) is more evolvable than a mind that is not c-modular (or that is scarcely c-modular), since a cognitive mechanism that is c-modular is likely to be biologically modular (henceforth, b-modular), and b-modular characters are more evolvable (e.g., Sperber 2002, Carruthers 2005). In evolutionary biology, the evolvability of a character in an organism is understood as the “organism’s capacity to facilitate the generation of non-lethal selectable phenotypic variation from random mutation” with respect to that character. Here I will argue that the notion of cognitive modularity needed to make this argument plausible will have to be understood in terms of the biological notion of variational independence; that is, it will have to be understood in such a way that a cognitive feature is c-modular only if few or no other morphological changes (cognitive and not) are significantly correlated with variations of that feature arising in members of the relevant population. I will also argue that all –except for (possibly) one—of the connotations contained in a cluster of notions of cognitive modularity widely accepted in some of the mainstream currents of thought in classical cognitive science, are simply irrelevant to the argument. In order to argue for this, I will have to examine the question as to whether there are any strong theoretical connections between (1) those connotations and (2) notions of modularity accepted in biology, specially in evolutionary and in developmental biology, that are thought to be most relevant to arguments to the effect that biological modularity enhances evolvability.
Gross, Steven (2010). Origins of human communication - by Michael Tomasello. Mind and Language 25 (2):237-246.   (Google)
Jeffares, Ben (online). The Evolution of Technical Competence: Economic and Strategic Thinking. ASCS09: Proceedings of the 9th Conference of the Australasian Society for Cognitive Science.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper will outline a series of changes in the archaeological record related to Hominins. I argue that these changes underlie the emergence of the capacity for strategic thinking. The paper will start by examining the foundation of technical skills found in primates, and then work through various phases of the archaeological and paleontological record. I argue that the key driver for the development of strategic thinking was the need to expand range sizes and cope with increasingly heterogeneous environments.
Menant, Christophe, Evolution of meaningful information generation through the evolution of life (2003).   (Google)
Abstract: In this paper, we use the Meaning Generator System (MGS) presented at Gathering in Biosemiotics 2 [1] to analyse the evolution of meaningful information generation through different steps of the evolution of life. Taking as a starting point the usage of MGS for vital constraint satisfaction in basic life (paramecium), we develop its application for more complex living elements up to the case of non-human primate. The thread we follow is relative to the identification of new constraints that can appear through evolution of life, and correspondingly participate to generation of new types of meaningful information. We show that beside the complexification of vital constraints to be satisfied, and in addition to the corresponding enrichment of their satisfaction processes, there is a step in evolution that naturally introduces some specific new constraint in living elements. This step is the one corresponding to the performance of self-representation. Self-representation appeared in evolution at the level of non-human primates. We present the content of self-representation and show that it has a direct consequence on the living element in terms of a new type of constraint to be satisfied. We show that this new constraint participates to the generation of a new set of meaningful information via the MGS, and that the satisfaction of the constraint introduces some natural formulation of emotion generation during the evolution of life. [1] http://www.biosemiotics-semiotics.fr.st/
Menant, Christophe (ms). From biosemiotics to semiotics (2002).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Biosemiotics and Semiotics have similarities and differences. Both deal with signal and meaning. One difference is that Biosemiotics covers a domain (life) that is less complex that the one addressed by Semiotics (human). We believe that this difference can be used to have Biosemiotics bringing added value to Semiotics. This belief is based on the fact that a theory of meaning is easier to build up for living elements than for humans, and that the results obtained for life can make available some tools for a higher level of complexity. Semiotic has been encountering some difficulties to deliver a scientific theory of meaning that can be efficient at the level of human mind. The obstacles come from our ignorance on the nature of human. As it is true that we do not understand the nature of human mind on a scientific basis. On the other hand, the nature and properties of life are better understood. And we can propose a modelization for a generation of meaningful information in the field of elementary life. Once such a modelization is established, it is possible to look at extending it to the domain of human life. Such an approach on a theory of meaning (begininig in Biosemiotics and aiming at Semiotics), is what we present in this paper. Taking an elementary living element as reference, we introduce the bases of a systemic theory of meaning. Using a simple living system submitted to a constraint, we define a meaningful information, a meaning generator system and some elements related to meaningful information transmission. We then try to identify the hypothesis that need to be taken into account so the results obtained for living elements can be extended to human
Menant, Christophe (2005). Information and meaning in life, humans and robots (2005). Proceedings of FIS2005 by MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Information and meaning exist around us and within ourselves, and the same information can correspond to different meanings. This is true for humans and animals, and is becoming true for robots. We propose here an overview of this subject by using a systemic tool related to meaning generation that has already been published (C. Menant, Entropy 2003). The Meaning Generator System (MGS) is a system submitted to a constraint that generates a meaningful information when it receives an incident information that has a relation with the constraint. The content of the meaningful information is explicited, and its function is to trigger an action that will be used to satisfy the constraint of the system. The MGS has been introduced in the case of basic life submitted to a "stay alive" constraint. We propose here to see how the usage of the MGS can be extended to more complex living systems, to humans and to robots by introducing new types of constraints, and integrating the MGS into higher level systems. The application of the MGS to humans is partly based on a scenario relative to the evolution of body self-awareness toward self-consciousness that has already been presented (C. Menant, Biosemiotics 2003, and TSC 2004). The application of the MGS to robots is based on the definition of the MGS applied to robots functionality, taking into account the origins of the constraints. We conclude with a summary of this overview and with themes that can be linked to this systemic approach on meaning generation
Menant, Christophe (ms). Introduction to a Systemic Theory of Meaning (Jan 2010 update).   (Google | More links)
Menant, Christophe, Proposal for an approach to artificial consciousness based on self-consciousness.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Current research on artificial consciousness is focused on phenomenal consciousness and on functional consciousness. We propose to shift the focus to self-consciousness in order to open new areas of investigation. We use an existing scenario where self-consciousness is considered as the result of an evolution of representations. Application of the scenario to the possible build up of a conscious robot also introduces questions relative to emotions in robots. Areas of investigation are proposed as a continuation of this approach

7.1d Rationality and Cognitive Science

Atkinson, Anthony P. & Wheeler, M. (2003). Evolutionary psychology's grain problem and the cognitive neuroscience of reasoning. In David E. Over (ed.), Evolution and the Psychology of Thinking: The Debate. Psychology Press.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Bermudez, Jose Luis (2002). Rationality and psychological explanation without language. In Jose Luis Bermudez & Alan Millar (eds.), Reason and Nature. Clarendon.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Bickhard, Mark H. (1992). How does the environment affect the person? In L. T. Winegar & Jaan Valsiner (eds.), Children's Development Within Social Contexts: Metatheoretical, Theoretical and Methodological Issues. Erlbaum.   (Cited by 54 | Google | More links)
Abstract: How Does the Environment Affect the Person? Mark H. Bickhard invited chapter in Children's Development within Social Contexts: Metatheoretical, Theoretical and Methodological Issues, Erlbaum. edited by L. T. Winegar, J. Valsiner, in press
Bickhard, Mark H. (ms). Interactivism: A manifesto.   (Cited by 4 | Google)
Biro, John I. & Ludwig, Kirk A. (1994). Are there more than minimal a priori limits on irrationality? Australasian Journal of Philosophy 72 (1):89-102.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Bortolotti, Lisa (2005). Intentionality without rationality. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 105 (3):385-392.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: It is often taken for granted in standard theories of interpretation that there cannot be intentionality without rationality. According to the background argument, a system can be interpreted as having irrational beliefs only against a general background of rationality. Starting from the widespread assumption that delusions can be reasonably described as irrational beliefs, I argue here that the background argument fails to account for their intentional description
Cain, Bruce E. & Jones, W. T. (1979). Modes of rationality and irrationality. Philosophical Studies 36 (November):333-343.   (Google | More links)
Callaway, H. G. (1992). Does Language Determine our Scientific Ideas? Dialectica 46 (3/4):225-242.   (Google)
Abstract: This paper argues that the influence of language on science, philosophy and other field is mediated by communicative practices. Where communications is more restrictive, established linguistic structures exercise a tighter control over innovations and scientifically motivated reforms of language. The viewpoint here centers on the thesis that argumentation is crucial in the understanding and evaluation of proposed reforms and that social practices which limit argumentation serve to erode scientific objectivity. Thus, a plea is made for a sociology of scientific belief designed to understand and insure social-institutional conditions of the possibility of knowledge and its growth. A chief argument draws on work of Axelrod concerning the evolution of cooperation.
Carruthers, Peter (2002). The roots of scientific reasoning: Infancy, modularity, and the art of tracking. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen P. Stich & Michael Siegal (eds.), [Book Chapter]. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This chapter examines the extent to which there are continuities between the cognitive processes and epistemic practices engaged in by human hunter-gatherers, on the one hand, and those which are distinctive of science, on the other. It deploys anthropological evidence against any form of 'no-continuity' view, drawing especially on the cognitive skills involved in the art of tracking. It also argues against the 'child-as-scientist' accounts put forward by some developmental psychologists, which imply that scientific thinking is present in early infancy and universal amongst humans who have sufficient time and resources to devote to it. In contrast, a modularist kind of 'continuity' account is proposed, according to which the innately channelled architecture of human cognition provides all the materials necessary for basic forms of scientific reasoning in older children and adults, needing only the appropriate sorts of external support, social context, and background beliefs and skills in order for science to begin its advance
Chater, Nick & Oaksford, Mike (2002). The rational analysis of human cognition. In Jose Luis Bermudez & Alan Millar (eds.), Reason and Nature. Clarendon.   (Google)
Chater, Nick & Oaksford, Mike (2000). The rational analysis of mind and behavior. Synthese 122 (1-2):93-131.   (Cited by 15 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Rational analysis (Anderson 1990, 1991a) is an empiricalprogram of attempting to explain why the cognitive system isadaptive, with respect to its goals and the structure of itsenvironment. We argue that rational analysis has two importantimplications for philosophical debate concerning rationality. First,rational analysis provides a model for the relationship betweenformal principles of rationality (such as probability or decisiontheory) and everyday rationality, in the sense of successfulthought and action in daily life. Second, applying the program ofrational analysis to research on human reasoning leads to a radicalreinterpretation of empirical results which are typically viewed asdemonstrating human irrationality
Cherniak, Christopher (1986). Minimal Rationality. MIT Press.   (Cited by 333 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In Minimal Rationality, Christopher Cherniak boldly challenges the myth of Man the the Rational Animal and the central role that the "perfectly rational...
Cherniak, Christopher (1983). Rationality and the structure of memory. Synthese 57 (November):163-86.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   A tacit and highly idealized model of the agent's memory is presupposed in philosophy. The main features of a more psychologically realistic duplex (orn-plex) model are sketched here. It is argued that an adequate understanding of the rationality of an agent's actions is not possible without a satisfactory theory of the agent's memory and of the trade-offs involved in management of the memory, particularly involving compartmentalization of the belief set. The discussion identifies some basic constraints on the organization of knowledge representations in general
Clark, Andy (2006). Author's reply to symposium on Natural-Born Cyborgs. Metascience.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Thought happens. Here I sit, sipping coffee, scribbling on paper, accessing files, reading and re-reading those four wonderful, challenging, yet immaculately constructive reviews. And somewhere, and to my eternal surprise, thought happens. But where, amidst the whirl of organization, should we locate the cognitive process? One possibility is that everything worth counting as (all or part) of any genuinely cognitive process hereabouts is firmly located inside the head, safe behind the ancient fortress of skin and skull. All the rest, according to this surgically neat view, is scene setting: preparing and maintaining the pitch upon which the great thinking organ performs
Clark, Andy (2003). Forces, fields, and the role of knowledge in action. Adaptive Behavior 11 (4):270-272.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Clark, Andy & Mandik, Pete (2002). Selective representing and world-making. Minds And Machines 12 (3):383-395.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In this paper, we discuss the thesis of selective representing — the idea that the contents of the mental representations had by organisms are highly constrained by the biological niches within which the organisms evolved. While such a thesis has been defended by several authors elsewhere, our primary concern here is to take up the issue of the compatibility of selective representing and realism. In this paper we hope to show three things. First, that the notion of selective representing is fully consistent with the realist idea of a mind-independent world. Second, that not only are these two consistent, but that the latter (the realist conception of a mind-independent world) provides the most powerful perspective from which to motivate and understand the differing perceptual and cog- nitive profiles themselves. And third, that the (genuine and important) sense in which organism and environment may together constitute an integrated system of scientific interest poses no additional threat to the realist conception
Cohen, L. Jonathan (1981). Can human irrationality be experimentally demonstrated? Behavioral and Brain Sciences 4:317-370.   (Cited by 401 | Google)
Cohen, L. Jonathan (1979). On the psychology of prediction: Whose is the fallacy? Cognition 7 (December):385-407.   (Cited by 30 | Google)
Cohen, L. Jonathan (1986). The Dialogue of Reason. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 38 | Google)
Abstract: Johnathan Cohen's book provides a lucid and penetrating treatment of the fundamental issues of contemporary analytical philosophy. This field now spans a greater variety of topics and divergence of opinion than fifty years ago, and Cohen's book addresses the presuppositions implicit to it and the patterns of reasoning on which it relies
Cohen, L. Jonathan (1980). Whose is the fallacy? A rejoinder to Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky. Cognition 8 (March):89-92.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Collins, Arthur W. & Bennett, Daniel C. (1966). Jonathan Bennett on rationality: Two reviews. Journal of Philosophy 63 (May):253-266.   (Google)
Cook, K. S. & Levi, M. (1990). The Limits of Rationality. University of Chicago Press.   (Cited by 64 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Intended to introduce novices to rational choice theory, this accessible, interdisciplinary book collects writings by leading researchers.
Davidson, Donald (1995). Could there be a science of rationality? International Journal of Philosophical Studies 3 (1):1-16.   (Cited by 19 | Google | More links)
Davidson, Donald (1985). Incoherence and irrationality. Dialectica 39:345-54.   (Cited by 28 | Google)
de Sousa, Ronald B. (2004). Rational animals: What the bravest lion won't risk. Croatian Journal of Philosophy 4 (12):365-386.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Dretske, Fred (2006). Minimal rationality. In Susan L. Hurley & Matthew Nudds (eds.), Rational Animals? Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Feldman, Richard H. (1988). Rationality, reliability, and natural selection. Philosophy of Science 55 (June):218-27.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Fetzer, James H. (1990). Evolution, rationality and testability. Synthese 82 (3):423-39.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Cosmides, Wason, and Johnson-Laird, among others, have suggested evidence that reasoning abilities tend to be domain specific, insofar as humans do not appear to acquire capacities for logical reasoning that are applicable across different contexts. Unfortunately, the significance of these findings depends upon the specific variety of logical reasoning under consideration. Indeed, there seem to be at least three grounds for doubting such conclusions, since: (1) tests of reasoning involving the use of material conditionals may not be appropriate for representing ordinary thinking, especially when it concerns causal processes involving the use of causal conditionals instead; (2) tests of domain specificity may fail to acknowledge the crucial role fulfilled by rules of inference, such as modus ponens and modus tollens, which appear to be completely general across different contexts; and, (3) tests that focus exclusively upon deductive reasoning may misinterpret findings involving the use of inductive reasoning, which is of primary importance for human evolution
Gardner, Sebastian (1996). Irrationality and the Philosophy of Psychoanalysis. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 60 | Google)
Abstract: In a reconstruction of the theories of Freud and Klein, Sebastian Gardner asks: what causes irrationality, what must the mind be like for it to be irrational,...
Gibbard, Allan F. (2002). Normative explanations: Invoking rationality to explain happenings. In Jose Luis Bermudez & Alan Millar (eds.), Reason and Nature. Clarendon.   (Google)
Gigerenzer, Gerd (1991). On cognitive illusions and rationality. In Probability and Rationality. Amsterdam: Rodopi.   (Cited by 19 | Google)
Han, Susan C. & Evans, Suzette M. (2005). Sex and drugs: Do women differ from men in their subjective response to drugs of abuse? In Mitch Earleywine (ed.), Mind-Altering Drugs. Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Harman, Gilbert (1986). Change in View. MIT Press.   (Cited by 496 | Google)
Abstract: C hange in View offers an entirely original approach to the philosophical study of reasoning by identifying principles of reasoning with principles for revising one's beliefs and intentions and not with principles of logic. This crucial observation leads to a number of important and interesting consequences that impinge on psychology and artificial intelligence as well as on various branches of philosophy, from epistemology to ethics and action theory. Gilbert Harman is Professor of Philosophy at Princeton University. A Bradford Book
Heil, John (1993). Going to pieces. In Philosophical Psychopathology. Cambridge: MIT Press.   (Cited by 4 | Google)
Holt, L. (1999). Rationality is still hard work: Some further notes on the disruptive effects of deliberation. Philosophical Psychology 12 (2):215-219.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: A brief review of recent experimental work by T.D. Wilson et al. on the disruptive effects of deliberation provides an opportunity for extending an alternative interpretation of those effects first offered in this journal [D.L. Holt (1993) Rationality is hard work: an alternative interpretation of the disruptive effects of thinking about reasons, Philosophical Psychology, 6, 251-266]. I therefore propose a thought experiment in which the favored parameters of much social psychological experimentation, including the specific parameters of Wilson et al., are reversed
Holdcroft, David (1985). The variety of rationality. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 163:163-175.   (Google)
Kacelnik, Alex (2006). Meanings of rationality. In Susan L. Hurley & Matthew Nudds (eds.), Rational Animals? Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 11 | Google)
Kahneman, Daniel; Slovic, Paul & Tversky, Amos (eds.) (1982). Judgment Under Uncertainty: Heuristics and Biases. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 4071 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The thirty-five chapters in this book describe various judgmental heuristics and the biases they produce, not only in laboratory experiments but in important...
Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos (1979). On the interpretation of intuitive probability: A reply to Jonathan Cohen. Cognition 7 (December):409-11.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Kelly, T. (2002). The rationality of belief and other propositional attitudes. Philosophical Studies 110 (2):163-96.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   In this paper, I explore the question of whether the expectedconsequences of holding a belief can affect the rationality ofdoing so. Special attention is given to various ways in whichone might attempt to exert some measure of control over whatone believes and the normative status of the beliefs thatresult from the successful execution of such projects. I arguethat the lessons which emerge from thinking about the case ofbelief have important implications for the way we should thinkabout the rationality of a number of other propositional attitudes,such as regret, desire, and fear. Finally,I suggest that a lack of clarity with respect to the relevant issueshas given rise to a number of rather serious philosophical mistakes
Leon, Mark . (1990). The mechanics of rationality. Southern Journal of Philosophy 28 (3):343-366.   (Google)
Levi, Isaac (2002). Commitment and change of view. In Jose Luis Bermudez & Alan Millar (eds.), Reason and Nature. Clarendon.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Lowe, E. J. (2002). The rational and the real: Some doubts about the programme of 'rational analysis'. In Jose Luis Bermudez & Alan Millar (eds.), Reason and Nature. Clarendon.   (Google)
Manktelow, K. & Over, David E. (1987). Reasoning and rationality. Mind and Language 2:199-219.   (Cited by 16 | Google | More links)
Matthen, Mohan P. (2002). Human rationality and the unique origin constraint. In André Ariew (ed.), Functions. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper offers a new definition of "adaptationism". An evolutionary account is adaptationist, it is suggested, if it allows for multiple independent origins for the same function -- i.e., if it violates the "Unique Origin Constraint". While this account captures much of the position Gould and Lewontin intended to stigmatize, it leaves it open that adaptationist accounts may sometimes be appropriate. However, there are many important cases, including that of human rationality, in which it is not.
Mele, Alfred R. (1987). Irrationality: An Essay on Akrasia, Self-Deception, and Self-Control. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 84 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Although much human action serves as proof that irrational behavior is remarkably common, certain forms of irrationality--most notably, incontinent action and self-deception--pose such difficult theoretical problems that philosophers have rejected them as logically or psychologically impossible. Here, Mele shows that, and how, incontinent action and self-deception are indeed possible. Drawing upon recent experimental work in the psychology of action and inference, he advances naturalized explanations of akratic action and self-deception while resolving the paradoxes around which the philosophical literature revolves. In addition, he defends an account of self-control, argues that "strict" akratic action is an insurmountable obstacle for traditional belief-desire models of action-explanation, and explains how a considerably modified model accommodates action of this sort
Mele, Alfred R. (1988). Irrationality: A precis. Philosophical Psychology 1 (2):173-177.   (Cited by 84 | Google | More links)
Abstract: My primary aim in Irrationality: An Essay on Akrasia, Self-Deception, and Self-Control (1987) is to show that and how akratic action and self-deception are possible. The control that normal agents have over their actions and beliefs figures in the analysis and explanation of both phenomena. For that reason, an examination of self-control plays a central role in the book. In addition, I devote a chapter each to akratic belief and the explanation of intentional action. A precis of the book will provide a useful context for the three essays that follow
Mele, Alfred R. (2004). Motivated irrationality. In The Oxford Handbook of Rationality. Oxford: Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Millar, Alan (2001). Rationality and higher-order intentionality. Philosophy Supplement 49:179-198.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Millikan, Ruth G. (2006). Styles of rationality. In Susan L. Hurley & Matthew Nudds (eds.), Rational Animals? Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 4 | Google)
Montero, Barbara (2006). Proprioception as an aesthetic sense. Journal Of Aesthetics And Art Criticism 64 (2):231-242.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Morton, Adam (1985). The variety of rationality. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 139:139-162.   (Google)
Moser, Paul K. (1983). Rationality without surprises: Davidson on rational belief. Dialectica 37:221-226.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Nisbett, Richard E. & Ross, Lee (1980). Human Inference: Strategies and Shortcomings of Social Judgment. Prentice-Hall.   (Cited by 2483 | Google)
Nozick, Robert (1993). The Nature of Rationality. Princeton University Press.   (Cited by 366 | Google)
Abstract: Throughout, the book combines daring speculations with detailed investigations to portray the nature and status of rationality and the essential role that...
Papineau, David (2003). The Roots of Reason: Philosophical Essays on Rationality, Evolution, and Probability. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 8 | Google)
Abstract: David Papineau presents a controversial view of human reason, portraying it as a normal part of the natural world, and drawing on the empirical sciences to illuminate its workings. In these six interconnected essays he discusses both theoretical and practical rationality, and shows how evolutionary theory, decision theory, and quantum mechanics offer fresh approaches to some long-standing problems
Penco, Carlo (online). Expressing the Background. Icelandic Philosophical Association (talks).   (Google)
Pollock, John L. (online). Irrationality and cognition.   (Google)
Abstract: The strategy of this paper is to throw light on rational cognition and epistemic justification by examining irrationality. Epistemic irrationality is possible because we are reflexive cognizers, able to reason about and redirect some aspects of our own cognition. One consequence of this is that one cannot give a theory of epistemic rationality or epistemic justification without simultaneously giving a theory of practical rationality. A further consequence is that practical irrationality can affect our epistemic cognition. I argue that practical irrationality derives from a general difficulty we have in overriding built-in shortcut modules aimed at making cognition more efficient, and all epistemic irrationality can be traced to this same source. A consequence of this account is that a theory of rationality is a descriptive theory, describing contingent features of a cognitive architecture, and it forms the core of a general theory of “voluntary” cognition — those aspects of cognition that are under voluntary control. It also follows that most of the so-called “rules for rationality” that philosophers have proposed are really just rules describing default (non- reflexive) cognition. It can be perfectly rational for a reflexive cognizer to break these rules. The “normativity” of rationality is a reflection of a built-in feature of reflexive cognition — when we detect violations of rationality, we have a tendency to desire to correct them. This is just another part of the descriptive theory of rationality. Although theories of rationality are descriptive, the structure of reflexive cognition gives philosophers, as human cognizers, privileged access to certain aspects of rational cognition. Philosophical theories of rationality are really scientific theories, based on inference to the best explanation, that take contingent introspective data as the evidence to be explained.
Pollock, John L. (1992). Rationality, function, and content. Philosophical Studies 65 (1-2):129-151.   (Google | More links)
Reiner, Richard (1995). Arguments against the possibility of perfect rationality. Minds and Machines 5 (3):373-89.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Many different arguments against the possibility of perfect rationality have appeared in the literature, and these target several different conceptions of perfect rationality. It is not clear how these different conceptions of perfect rationality are related, nor is it clear how the arguments showing their impossibility are related, and it is especially unclear what the impossibility results show when taken together. This paper gives an exposition of the different conceptions of perfect rationality, an the various sorts of argument against them; clarifies which conceptions of perfect rationality are targeted by which arguments; and finally attempts to systematize the results available to date
Rogers, A. K. (1904). Rationality and belief. Philosophical Review 13 (1):30-50.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Ross, Jacob Joshua (1974). Rationality and commonsense. Philosophia 4 (4).   (Google | More links)
Rust, John (1990). Delusions, irrationality, and cognitive science. Philosophical Psychology 3 (1):123-138.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Samuels, Richard & Stich, Stephen P. (2004). Rationality and psychology. In Piers Rawling & Alfred R. Mele (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Rationality. Oxford: Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 37 | Google)
Scholl, Brian J. (1997). Reasoning, rationality, and architectural resolution. Philosophical Psychology 10 (4):451-470.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Abstract: Recent evidence suggests that performance on reasoning tasks may reflect the operation of a number of distinct cognitive mechanisms and processes. This paper explores the implications of this view of the mind for the descriptive and normative assessment of reasoning. I suggest that descriptive questions such as “Are we equipped to reason using rule X?” and normative questions such as “Are we rational?” are obsolete—they do not possess a fine enough grain of architectural resolution to accurately characterize the mind. I explore how this general lesson can apply to specific experimental interpretations, and suggest that 'rationality' must be evaluated along a number of importantly distinct dimensions
Scott-Kakures, Dion (1996). Self-deception and internal irrationality. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 56 (1):31-56.   (Cited by 9 | Google | More links)
Searle, John R. (2003). Rationality in Action. MIT Press.   (Cited by 199 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The study of rationality and practical reason, or rationality in action, has been central to Western intellectual culture. In this invigorating book, John Searle lays out six claims of what he calls the Classical Model of rationality and shows why they are false. He then presents an alternative theory of the role of rationality in thought and action. A central point of Searle's theory is that only irrational actions are directly caused by beliefs and desires—for example, the actions of a person in the grip of an obsession or addiction. In most cases of rational action, there is a gap between the motivating desire and the actual decision making. The traditional name for this gap is "freedom of the will." According to Searle, all rational activity presupposes free will. For rationality is possible only where one has a choice among various rational as well as irrational options. Unlike many philosophical tracts, Rationality in Action invites the reader to apply the author's ideas to everyday life. Searle shows, for example, that contrary to the traditional philosophical view, weakness of will is very common. He also points out the absurdity of the claim that rational decision making always starts from a consistent set of desires. Rational decision making, he argues, is often about choosing between conflicting reasons for action. In fact, humans are distinguished by their ability to be rationally motivated by desire-independent reasons for action. Extending his theory of rationality to the self, Searle shows how rational deliberation presupposes an irreducible notion of the self. He also reveals the idea of free will to be essentially a thesis of how the brain works.
Smokrovic, Nenad (1995). Intentionalism and rationality (a criticism of Stich's slippery slope argument). Acta Analytica 14 (14):101-111.   (Google)
Sober, Elliott (1981). The evolution of rationality. Synthese 46 (January):95-120.   (Cited by 19 | Google | More links)
Sosa, Ernest & Galloway, David (2001). Man the rational animal? Synthese 122 (1-2):165-78.   (Cited by 30 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   This paper considers well known results of psychological researchinto the fallibility of human reason, and philosophical conclusionsthat some have drawn from these results. Close attention to theexact content of the results casts doubt on the reasoning that leadsto those conclusions
Sterelny, Kim (2005). Cognitive load and human decision. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Structure and Content. Oup.   (Google)
Sterelny, Kim (2006). Folk logic and animal rationality. In Susan L. Hurley & Matthew Nudds (eds.), Rational Animals? Oup.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: It is indeed important to identify the rich variety of systems for the adaptive control of behaviour, rather than squeezing this richness into a few boxes. We need to recognise both the variety of systems for the cognitive control of adaptive behaviour and to chart the relationships between such systems. But I shall argue that these projects are not best pursued by asking about the extent of animal rationality. The argument develops in three stages. The first outlines a picture of the selective regimes that drive the evolution of the sophisticated use of information by animal agents. The second argues that hominid cognition has evolved in response to a somewhat different set of
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challenges and that (as a consequence) the transmission of social information and skill has come to be both a critical and an unusual feature of hominid selective and developmental environments. The third draws upon the ideas of Dan Sperber and others in arguing that the social transmission of information introduces (or makes much more important) a vetting problem. I shall suggest that we see rationality as an evolved response to this vetting problem
Stein, Edward (1994). Rationality and reflective equilibrium. Synthese 99 (2):137-72.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Cohen (1981) and others have made an interesting argument for the thesis that humans are rational: normative principles of reasoning and actual human reasoning ability cannot diverge because both are determined by the same process involving our intuitions about what constitutes good reasoning as a starting point. Perhaps the most sophisticated version of this argument sees reflective equilibrium as the process that determines both what the norms of reasoning are and what actual cognitive competence is. In this essay, I will evaluate both the general argument that humans are rational and the reflective equilibrium argument for the same thesis. While I find both accounts initially appealing, I will argue that neither successfully establishes that humans are rational
Stein, Edward (1996). Without Good Reason: The Rationality Debate in Philosophy and Cognitive Science. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 159 | Google)
Abstract: In this book, Edward Stein offers a clear critical account of the debate about rationality in philosophy and cognitive science. He discusses concepts of rationality--the pictures of rationality on which the debate centers--and assesses the empirical evidence used to argue that humans are irrational. He concludes that the question of human rationality must be answered not conceptually but empirically, using the full resources of an advanced cognitive science. Furthermore, he extends this conclusion to argue that empirical considerations are also relevant to the theory of knowledge--in other words, that epistemology should be naturalized
Stich, Stephen P. (1985). Could man be an irrational animal? Synthese 64 (1):115-35.   (Cited by 36 | Google | More links)
Sturdee, P. G. (1995). Irrationality and the dynamic unconscious: The case for wishful thinking. Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology 2 (2):163-174.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Tweney, Ryan D. & Doherty, Michael E. (1983). Rationality and the psychology of inference. Synthese 57 (November):129-138.   (Cited by 11 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Recent advances in the cognitive psychology of inference have been of great interest to philosophers of science. The present paper reviews one such area, namely studies based upon Wason's 4-card selection task. It is argued that interpretation of the results of the experiments is complex, because a variety of inference strategies may be used by subjects to select evidence needed to confirm or disconfirm a hypothesis. Empirical evidence suggests that which strategy is used depends in part on the semantic, syntactic, and pragmatic context of the inference problem at hand. Since the factors of importance are also present in real-world science, and similarly complicate its interpretation, the selection task, though it does not present a quick fix, represents a kind of microcosm of great utility for the understanding of science. Several studies which have examined selection strategies in more complex problem-solving environments are also reviewed, in an attempt to determine the limits of generalizability of the simpler selection tasks. Certain interpretational misuses of laboratory research are described, and a claim made that the issue of whether or not scientists are rational should be approached by philosophers and psychologists with appropriate respect for the complexities of the issue
Wason, Peter C. (1966). Reasoning. In New Horizons in Psychology. Penguin.   (Cited by 475 | Google)
Weintraub, Ruth (1995). Psychological determinism and rationality. Erkenntnis 43 (1):67-79.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   There are arguments which purport to rebut psychological determinism by appealing to its alleged incompatibility with rationality. I argue that they all fail. Against Davidson, I argue that rationality does not preclude the existence of psychological laws. Against Popper, I argue that rationality is compatible with the possibility of predicting human actions. Against Schlesinger, I claim that Newcomb's problem cannot be invoked to show that human actions are unpredictable. Having vindicated the possibility of a rationally-based theory of action, I consider the form it might take

7.1e Embodiment and Situated Cognition

Agre, Philip E. (1995). Computation and embodied agency. Informatica 19:527-35.   (Cited by 26 | Google)
Anderson, Michael L. (1997). Content and Comportment: On Embodiment and the Epistemic Availability of the World. Rowman and Littlefield.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: "Content and Comportment argues persuasively that the answer to some long-standing questions in epistemology and metaphysics lies in taking up the neglected question of the role of our bodily activity in establishing connections between representational states?knowledge and belief in particular?and their objects in the world. It takes up these ideas from both current mainstream analytic philosophy?Frege, Dummett, Davidson, Evans?and from mainstream continental work?Heidegger and his commentators and critics?and bings them together successfully in a way that should surprise only those who persist in maintaining this barren dichotymization of the field."?Anthony Appiah , Princeton University
Anderson, Michael L. (2003). Embodied cognition: A field guide. Artificial Intelligence 149 (1):91-130.   (Cited by 86 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The nature of cognition is being re-considered. Instead of emphasizing formal operations on abstract symbols, the new approach foregrounds the fact that cognition is, rather, a situated activity, and suggests that thinking beings ought therefore be considered first and foremost as acting beings. The essay reviews recent work in Embodied Cognition, provides a concise guide to its principles, attitudes and goals, and identifies the physical grounding project as its central research focus
Anderson, Michael L. (ms). Embodied cognition: The teenage years.   (Google)
Abstract: A review of Gallagher, S. (2005). How the Body Shapes the Mind. Oxford: Oxford University Press
Anderson, Michael L. (2005). Representation, evolution and embodiment. [Journal (Paginated)] (in Press).   (Google)
Abstract: As part of the ongoing attempt to fully naturalize the concept of human being--and, more specifically, to re-center it around the notion of agency--this essay discusses an approach to defining the content of representations in terms ultimately derived from their central, evolved function of providing guidance for action. This 'guidance theory' of representation is discussed in the context of, and evaluated with respect to, two other biologically inspired theories of representation: Dan Lloyd's dialectical theory of representation and Ruth Millikan's biosemantics
Ballard, Dana (1991). Animate vision. Artificial Intelligence 48:57-86.   (Cited by 707 | Google | More links)
Barnier, Amanda; Sutton, John; Harris, Celia & Wilson, Robert A. (2008). A conceptual and empirical framework for the social distribution of cognition: The case of memory. Cognitive Systems Research 9 (1):33-51.   (Google)
Beer, R. (1995). A dynamical systems perspective on agent-environment interaction. Artificial Intelligence 72:173-215.   (Cited by 308 | Google | More links)
Bermudez, Jose Luis; Marcel, Anthony J. & Eilan, Naomi M. (eds.) (1995). The Body and the Self. MIT Press.   (Cited by 73 | Google | More links)
Borrett, Donald; Kelly, Sean D. & Kwan, Hon (2000). Bridging embodied cognition and brain function: The role of phenomenology. Philosophical Psychology 13 (2):261-266.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Both cognitive science and phenomenology accept the primacy of the organism-environment system and recognize that cognition should be understood in terms of an embodied agent situated in its environment. How embodiment is seen to shape our world, however, is fundamentally different in these two disciplines. Embodiment, as understood in cognitive science, reduces to a discussion of the consequences of having a body like ours interacting with our environment and the relationship is one of contingent causality. Embodiment, as understood phenomenologically, represents the condition of intelligibility of certain terms in our experience and, as such, refers to one aspect of that background which presupposes our understanding of the world. The goals and approach to modeling an embodied agent in its environment are also fundamentally different dependent on which relationship is addressed. These differences are highlighted and are used to support our phenomenologically based approach to organism-environment interaction and its relationship to brain function
Buckley, Joseph A. & Hall, Lisa L. (1999). Self-knowledge and embodiment. Southwest Philosophy Review 15 (1):185-196.   (Google)
Cassam, Quassim (1995). Introspection and bodily self-ascription. In Jose Luis Bermudez, Anthony J. Marcel & Naomi M. Eilan (eds.), The Body and the Self. MIT Press.   (Cited by 10 | Google)
Cassam, Quassim (2002). Representing bodies. Ratio 15 (4):315-334.   (Google | More links)
Chrisley, Ron (2003). Embodiment. In The Macmillan Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science.   (Google)
Chrisley, Ronald L. (1994). Taking embodiment seriously: Nonconceptual content and robotics. In Kenneth M. Ford, C. Glymour & Patrick Hayes (eds.), Android Epistemology. MIT Press.   (Cited by 9 | Google)
Clark, Andy (1999). Where brain, body and world collide. Cognitive Systems Research 1 (1):5-17.   (Cited by 34 | Google | More links)
Abstract: --œWhere Brain, Body, and World Collide--� reprinted by permission of Daedalus, Journal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, from the issue entitled, --œThe Brain,--� Spring 1998, Vol. 127, No. 2
Clark, Andy (2005). Beyond the flesh: Some lessons from a Mole cricket. Artificial Life 11 (1-2):233-44.   (Cited by 11 | Google | More links)
Abstract: What do linguistic symbols do for minds like ours, and how (if at all) can basic embodied, dynamical and situated approaches do justice to high-level human thought and reason? These two questions are best addressed together, since our answers to the first may inform the second. The key move in ‘scaling-up’ simple embodied cognitive science is, I argue, to take very seriously the potent role of human-built structures in transforming the spaces of human learning and reason. In particular, in this paper I look at a range of cases involving what I dub ‘surrogate situations’. Here, we actively create restricted artificial environments that allow us to deploy basic perception-action- reason routines in the absence of their proper objects. Examples include the use of real-world models, diagrams and other concrete external symbols to support dense looping interactions with a variety of stable external structures that stand in for the absent states of affairs
Clark, Andy (1997). Being There: Putting Brain, Body, and World Together Again. MIT Press.   (Cited by 1887 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In treating cognition as problem solving, Andy Clark suggests, we may often abstract too far from the very body and world in which our brains evolved to guide...
Clark, Andy (1987). Being there: Why implementation matters to cognitive science. AI Review 1:231-44.   (Cited by 292 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Clark, Andy (1997). Embodiment and the philosophy of mind. In Anthony O'Hear (ed.), Contemporary Issues in the Philosophy of Mind. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Clark, Andy (1998). Embodiment and the philosophy of mind. In Current Issues in Philosophy of Mind. New York: Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Cambridge University Press:1998) P. 35-52. To be reprinted in Alberto Peruzzi (ed) MIND
Clark, Andy (1999). An embodied cognitive science? Trends in Cognitive Sciences 3 (9):345-351.   (Cited by 98 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The last ten years have seen an increasing interest, within cognitive science, in issues concerning the physical body, the local environment, and the complex interplay between neural systems and the wider world in which they function. --œPhysically embodied, environmentally embedded--� approaches thus loom large on the contemporary cognitive scientific scene. Yet many unanswered questions remain, and the shape of a genuinely embodied, embedded science of the mind is still unclear. I begin by sketching a few examples of the approach, and then raise a variety of critical questions concerning its nature and scope. A distinction is drawn between two kinds of appeal to embodiment: 'simple' cases, in which bodily and environmental properties merely constrain accounts that retain the focus on inner organization and processing, and more radical appeals, in which attention to bodily and environmental features is meant to transform both the subject matter and the theoretical framework of cognitive science
Clark, Andy (1995). Moving minds: Situating content in the service of real-time success. Philosophical Perspectives 9:89-104.   (Cited by 14 | Google | More links)
Clark, Andy (2003). Natural-Born Cyborgs: Minds, Technologies and the Future of Human Intelligence. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 181 | Google | More links)
Clark, Andy (2001). Reasons, robots and the extended mind. Mind and Language 16 (2):121-145.   (Cited by 49 | Google | More links)
Abstract: A suitable project for the new Millenium is to radically reconfigure our image of human rationality. Such a project is already underway, within the Cognitive Sciences, under the umbrellas of work in Situated Cognition, Distributed and De-centralized Cogition, Real-world Robotics and Artificial Life1. Such approaches, however, are often criticized for giving certain aspects of rationality too wide a berth. They focus their attention on on such superficially poor cousins as
Clark, Andy & Chalmers, David J. (1998). The extended mind. Analysis 58 (1):7-19.   (Cited by 320 | Annotation | Google | More links)
Abstract: Where does the mind stop and the rest of the world begin? The question invites two standard replies. Some accept the demarcations of skin and skull, and say that what is outside the body is outside the mind. Others are impressed by arguments suggesting that the meaning of our words "just ain't in the head", and hold that this externalism about meaning carries over into an externalism about mind. We propose to pursue a third position. We advocate a very different sort of externalism: an _active externalism_ , based on the active role of the environment in driving cognitive processes
Collins, Corbin (1988). Body-intentionality. Inquiry 31 (December):495-518.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Colombetti, Giovanna (web). Enaction, Sense-Making and Emotion. In S.J. Gapenne & E. Di Paolo (eds.), Enaction: Towards a New Paradigm for Cognitive Science. MIT Press.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: The theory of autopoiesis is central to the enactive approach. Recent works emphasize that the theory of autopoiesis is a theory of sense-making in living systems, i.e. of how living systems produce and consume meaning. In this chapter I first illustrate (some aspects of) these recent works, and interpret their notion of sense-making as a bodily cognitive- emotional form of understanding. Then I turn to modern emotion science, and I illustrate its tendency to over-intellectualize our capacity to evaluate and understand. I show that this overintellectualization goes hand in hand with the rejection of the idea that the body is a vehicle of meaning. I explain why I think that this over-intellectualization is problematic, and try to reconceptualize the notion of evaluation in emotion theory in a way that is consistent and continuous with the autopoietic notion of sense-making
Cussins, Adrian (1992). Content, embodiment, and objectivity: The theory of cognitive trails. Mind 101 (404):651-88.   (Cited by 83 | Google | More links)
De Jaegher, Hanne & Froese, Tom (2009). On the role of social interaction in individual agency. Adaptive Behavior 17 (5):444-460.   (Google)
Abstract: Is an individual agent constitutive of or constituted by its social interactions? This question is typically not asked in the cognitive sciences, so strong is the consensus that only individual agents have constitutive efficacy. In this article we challenge this methodological solipsism and argue that interindividual relations and social context do not simply arise from the behavior of individual agents, but themselves enable and shape the individual agents on which they depend. For this, we define the notion of autonomy as both a characteristic of individual agents and of social interaction processes. We then propose a number of ways in which interactional autonomy can influence individuals. Then we discuss recent work in modeling on the one hand and psychological investigations on the other that support and illustrate this claim. Finally, we discuss some implications for research on social and individual agency.
De Jaegher, Hanne (2009). Social understanding through direct perception? Yes, by interacting. Consciousness & Cognition 18 (2):535-542.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper comments on Gallagher’s recently published direct perception proposal about social cognition [Gallagher, S. (2008a). Direct perception in the intersubjective context. Consciousness and Cognition, 17(2), 535–543]. I show that direct perception is in danger of being appropriated by the very cognitivist accounts criticised by Gallagher (theory theory and simulation theory). Then I argue that the experiential directness of perception in social situations can be understood only in the context of the role of the interaction process in social cognition. I elaborate on the role of social interaction with a discussion of participatory sense-making to show that direct perception, rather than being a perception enriched by mainly individual capacities, can be best understood as an interactional phenomenon.
De Jaegher, Hanne (2009). What made me want the cheese? A reply to Shaun Gallagher and Dan Hutto. Consciousness & Cognition 18 (2):549-550.   (Google)
Depraz, Natalie (2002). Confronting death before death: Between imminence and unpredictability. Francisco Varela's neurophenomenology of radical embodiment. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 1 (2).   (Google)
Dobbyn, Chris & Stuart, Susan A. J. (2003). The self as an embedded agent. Minds and Machines 13 (2):187-201.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   In this paper we consider the concept of a self-aware agent. In cognitive science agents are seen as embodied and interactively situated in worlds. We analyse the meanings attached to these terms in cognitive science and robotics, proposing a set of conditions for situatedness and embodiment, and examine the claim that internal representational schemas are largely unnecessary for intelligent behaviour in animats. We maintain that current situated and embodied animats cannot be ascribed even minimal self-awareness, and offer a six point definition of embeddedness, constituting minimal conditions for the evolution of a sense of self. This leads to further analysis of the nature of embodiment and situatedness, and a consideration of whether virtual animats in virtual worlds could count as situated and embodied. We propose that self-aware agents must possess complex structures of self-directed goals; multi-modal sensory systems and a rich repertoire of interactions with their worlds. Finally, we argue that embedded agents will possess or evolve local co-ordinate systems, or points of view, relative to their current positions in space and time, and have a capacity to develop an egocentric space. None of these capabilities are possible without powerful internal representational capacities
Dokic, Jérôme (2006). From linguistic contextualism to situated cognition: The case of ad hoc concepts. Philosophical Psychology 19 (3):309 – 328.   (Google)
Abstract: Our utterances are typically if not always "situated," in the sense that they are true or false relative to unarticulated parameters of the extra-linguistic context. The problem is to explain how these parameters are determined, given that nothing in the uttered sentences indicates them. It is tempting to claim that they must be determined at the level of thought or intention. However, as many philosophers have observed, thoughts themselves are no less situated than utterances. Unarticulated parameters need not be mentally represented. In this paper, I try to make precise the notion of representation at stake here. In one sense of 'representation', something is represented if it is inferentially relevant. In another, less demanding sense, something is represented if it is relevant to the construction of a context-sensitive, ad hoc concept. Ad hoc concepts act as "proxies" for cognitively more demanding representations. They "imitate" the latter's epistemic and pragmatic roles while being inferentially less sophisticated. Thus, there are two senses in which a thought can be said to be situated: (1) its truth-value is relative to a non-represented contextual parameter, (2) its truth-value is not itself relative, but it involves a context-sensitive, ad hoc concept
Drayson, Zoe (2009). Embodied Cognitive Science and its Implications for Psychopathology. Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology 16 (4):329-340.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: The past twenty years have seen an increase in the importance of the body in psychology, neuroscience, and philosophy of mind. This 'embodied' trend challenges the orthodox view in cognitive science in several ways: it downplays the traditional 'mind-as-computer' approach and emphasizes the role of interactions between the brain, body, and environment. In this article, I review recent work in the area of embodied cognitive science and explore the approaches each takes to the ideas of consciousness, computation and representation. Finally, I look at the current relationship between orthodox cognitive science and the study of mental disorder, and consider the implications that the embodied trend could have for issues in psychopathology.
Dreyfus, Hubert L. (online). Overcoming the myth of the mental: How philosophers can profit from the phenomenology of everyday expertise.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Back in 1950, while a physics major at Harvard, I wandered into C.I. Lewis’s epistemology course. There, Lewis was confidently expounding the need for an indubitable Given to ground knowledge, and he was explaining where that ground was to be found. I was so impressed that I immediately switched majors from ungrounded physics to grounded philosophy
Dreyfus, Hubert L. (2006). Overcoming the myth of the mental. Topoi 25 (1-2):43-49.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Can we accept John McDowell’s Kantian claim that perception is conceptual “all the way out,” thereby denying the more basic perceptual capacities we seem to share with prelinguistic infants and higher animals? More generally, can philosophers successfully describe the conceptual upper floors of the edifice of knowledge while ignoring the embodied coping going on on the ground floor? I argue that we shouldn’t leave the conceptual component of our lives hanging in midair and suggest how philosophers who want to understand knowledge and action can profit from a phenomenological analysis of the nonconceptual embodied coping skills we share with animals and infants, as well as the nonconceptual immediate intuitive understanding exhibited by experts
Dreyfus, Hubert L. (1996). The current relevance of Merleau-ponty's phenomenology of embodiment. Filozofska Istrazivanja 15 (3).   (Cited by 64 | Google)
Gallagher, Shaun (2003). Bodily self-awareness and object perception. Theoria Et Historia Scientarum 7 (1):in press.   (Cited by 14 | Google)
Abstract: Gallagher, S. 2003. Bodily self-awareness and object perception. _Theoria et Historia Scientiarum: International Journal for Interdisciplinary_ _Studies_, 7 (1) - in press
Gallagher, Shaun (2005). How the Body Shapes the Mind. Oxford: Clarendon Press.   (Cited by 44 | Google | More links)
Abstract: How the Body Shapes the Mind is an interdisciplinary work that addresses philosophical questions by appealing to evidence found in experimental psychology, neuroscience, studies of pathologies, and developmental psychology. There is a growing consensus across these disciplines that the contribution of embodiment to cognition is inescapable. Because this insight has been developed across a variety of disciplines, however, there is still a need to develop a common vocabulary that is capable of integrating discussions of brain mechanisms in neuroscience, behavioral expressions in psychology, design concerns in artificial intelligence and robotics, and debates about embodied experience in the phenomenology and philosophy of mind. Shaun Gallagher's book aims to contribute to the formulation of that common vocabulary and to develop a conceptual framework that will avoid both the overly reductionistic approaches that explain everything in terms of bottom-up neuronal mechanisms, and inflationistic approaches that explain everything in terms of Cartesian, top-down cognitive states. Gallagher pursues two basic sets of questions. The first set consists of questions about the phenomenal aspects of the structure of experience, and specifically the relatively regular and constant features that we find in the content of our experience. If throughout conscious experience there is a constant reference to one's own body, even if this is a recessive or marginal awareness, then that reference constitutes a structural feature of the phenomenal field of consciousness, part of a framework that is likely to determine or influence all other aspects of experience. The second set of questions concerns aspects of the structure of experience that are more hidden, those that may be more difficult to get at because they happen before we know it. They do not normally enter into the content of experience in an explicit way, and are often inaccessible to reflective consciousness. To what extent, and in what ways, are consciousness and cognitive processes, which include experiences related to perception, memory, imagination, belief, judgement, and so forth, shaped or structured by the fact that they are embodied in this way?
Gallagher, Shaun (2005). Metzinger's matrix: Living the virtual life with a real body. Psyche 11 (5).   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Is it possible to say that there is no real self if we take a non-Cartesian view of the body? Is it possible to say that an organism can engage in pragmatic action and intersubjective interaction and that the self generated in such activity is not real? This depends on how we define the concept "real". By taking a close look at embodied action, and at Metzinger's concept of embodiment, I want to argue that, on a non-Cartesian concept of reality, the self should be considered something real, and not simply an illusion
Gallagher, Shaun (ms). Philosophical antecedents of situated cognition.   (Google)
Abstract: In this chapter I plan to situate the concept of situated cognition within the framework of antecedent philosophical work. My intention, however, is not to provide a simple historical guide but to suggest that there are still some untapped resources in these past philosophers that may serve to enrich current accounts of situated cognition
Gangemi, Aldo (2009). What’s in a Schema? A Formal Metamodel for ECG and FrameNet. Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Gibson, James J. (1979). The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception. Houghton Mifflin.   (Cited by 12 | Google | More links)
Abstract: And in the end I came to believe that the whole theory of depth perception was false. I suggested a new theory in a book on what I called the visual world ...
Glenberg, Arthur M. (2006). Radical changes in cognitive process due to technology: A jaundiced view. Pragmatics and Cognition 14 (2):263-274.   (Google | More links)
Grush, Rick & Mandik, Pete (2002). Representational parts. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 1 (4).   (Google)
Grunbaum, Thor (2008). The body in action. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 7 (2).   (Google)
Abstract: This article is about how to describe an agent’s awareness of her bodily movements when she is aware of executing an action for a reason. Against current orthodoxy, I want to defend the claim that the agent’s experience of moving has an epistemic place in the agent’s awareness of her own intentional action. In “The problem,” I describe why this should be thought to be problematic. In “Motives for denying epistemic role,” I state some of the main motives for denying that bodily awareness has any epistemic role to play in the content of the agent’s awareness of her own action. In “Kinaesthetic awareness and control,” I sketch how I think the experience of moving and the bodily sense of agency or control are best described. On this background, I move on to present, in “Arguments for epistemic role,” three arguments in favour of the claim that normally the experience of moving is epistemically important to one’s awareness of acting intentionally. In the final “Concluding remarks,” I round off by raising some of the worries that motivated the denial of my claim in the first place
Hanna, Robert (2009). Embodied Minds in Action. Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Abstract: In Embodied Minds in Action, Robert Hanna and Michelle Maiese work out a unified treatment of three fundamental philosophical problems: the mind-body problem, the problem of mental causation, and the problem of action. This unified treatment rests on two basic claims. The first is that conscious, intentional minds like ours are essentially embodied. This entails that our minds are necessarily spread throughout our living, organismic bodies and belong to their complete neurobiological constitution. So minds like ours are necessarily alive. The second claim is that essentially embodied minds are self-organizing thermodynamic systems. This entails that our mental lives consist in the possibility and actuality of moving our own living organismic bodies through space and time, by means of our conscious desires. The upshot is that we are essentially minded animals who help to create the natural world through our own agency. This doctrine--the Essential Embodiment Theory--is a truly radical idea which subverts the traditionally opposed and seemingly exhaustive categories of Dualism and Materialism, and offers a new paradigm for contemporary mainstream research in the philosophy of mind and cognitive neuroscience
Haugeland, John (1993). Mind embodied and embedded. In Yu-Houng H. Houng & J. Ho (eds.), Mind and Cognition: 1993 International Symposium. Academica Sinica.   (Cited by 49 | Annotation | Google)
Hendriks-Jansen, H. (1996). Catching Ourselves in the Act: Situated Activity, Interactive Emergence, Evolution, and Human Thought. MIT Press.   (Cited by 12 | Google | More links)
Abstract: ""Catching Ourselves in the Act" is no less than an attempt to explain intelligence. Delightful how the author dismantles traditional views in
Hodge, K. Mitch (2008). Descartes Mistake: How Afterlife Beliefs Challenge the Assumption that Humans are Intuitive Cartesian Dualists. Journal of Cognition and Culture 8 (3-4):387-415.   (Google)
Abstract: This article presents arguments and evidence that run counter to the widespread assumption among scholars that humans are intuitive Cartesian substance dualists. With regard to afterlife beliefs, the hypothesis of Cartesian substance dualism as the intuitive folk position fails to have the explanatory power with which its proponents endow it. It is argued that the embedded corollary assumptions of the intuitive Cartesian substance dualist position (that the mind and body are different substances, that the mind and soul are intensionally identical, and that the mind is the sole source of identity) are not compatible with cultural representations such as mythologies, funerary rites, iconography and doctrine as well as empirical evidence concerning intuitive folk reasoning about the mind and body concerning the afterlife. Finally, the article







suggests an alternative and more parsimonious explanation for understanding intuitive folk representations of the afterlife.
Hodge, K. Mitch (forthcoming). Why Immortality Alone will not get Me to the Afterlife. Philosophical Psychology.   (Google)
Abstract: Recent research in the cognitive science of religion suggests that humans intuitively believe that others survive death. In response to this finding, three cognitive theories have been offered to explain this; the simulation constraint theory (Bering 2002), the imaginative obstacle

theory (Nichols 2007) and terror management theory (Pyszczynski, Rothschild, & Abdollahi, 2008). First, I provide a critical analysis of each of those theories. Second, I argue that these theories, while perhaps explaining why one would believe in his own personal immortality, leave



an explanatory gap in that they do not explain why one would intuitively attribute survival of death to others. To fill in the gap, I offer a cognitive theory based on offline social reasoning and social embodiment which provides for the belief in an eternal social realm in which the deceased survive—the afterlife.
Hutto, Daniel D. (2006). Against passive intellectualism: Reply to Crane. In Richard Menary (ed.), Radical Enactivism: Intentionality, Phenomenology and Narrative: Focus on the Philosophy of Daniel D. Hutto.   (Google)
Hutchins, Edwin (1995). Cognition in the Wild. MIT Press.   (Cited by 9 | Google | More links)
Hutto, Daniel D. (2006). Embodied expectations and extended possibilities: Reply to Goldie. In Richard Menary (ed.), Radical Enactivism: Intentionality, Phenomenology and Narrative: Focus on the Philosophy of Daniel D. Hutto.   (Google)
Jeffares, Ben (online). The Evolution of Technical Competence: Economic and Strategic Thinking. ASCS09: Proceedings of the 9th Conference of the Australasian Society for Cognitive Science.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper will outline a series of changes in the archaeological record related to Hominins. I argue that these changes underlie the emergence of the capacity for strategic thinking. The paper will start by examining the foundation of technical skills found in primates, and then work through various phases of the archaeological and paleontological record. I argue that the key driver for the development of strategic thinking was the need to expand range sizes and cope with increasingly heterogeneous environments.
Johnson, Mark L. (1995). Incarnate mind. Minds and Machines 5 (4):533-45.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   We are beings of the flesh. Our sensorimotor motor experience is the basis for the structure of our higher cognitive functions of conceptual cognition and reasoning. Consequently, our subjectivity is intimately tied up with the nature of our embodied experience. This runs directly counter to views of self-identity dominant in contemporary cognitive science. I give an account of how we ought to understand ourselves as incarnates, and how this would change our view of meaning, knowledge, reason, and subjectivity
Johnson, Mark (1988). Some constraints on embodied analogical understanding. In Analogical Reasoning. Dordrecht: Kluwer.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Johnson, Mark L. (1987). The Body in the Mind: The Bodily Basis of Meaning, Imagination, and Reason. University of Chicago Press.   (Cited by 2049 | Google)
Jordan, J. Scott (2000). The role of "control" in an embodied cognition. Philosophical Psychology 13 (2):233 – 237.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Borrett, Kelly, and Kwan follow the lead of Merleau-Ponty and develop a theory of neural-network modeling that emerges out of what they find wrong with current approaches to thought and action. Specifically, they take issue with "cognitivism" and its tendency to model cognitive agents as controlling, representational systems. While attempting to make the point that pre-predicative experience/action/place (i.e. grasping) involves neither representation nor control, the authors imply that control-theoretic concepts and representationalism necessarily go hand-in-hand. The purpose of the present paper is to demonstrate that this is not the case. Rather, it will be argued that such necessity is only assumed because the authors attempt to apply the control theory of servo-mechanisms to the behavior of organisms. By adopting this engineering control-theoretic perspective, the authors are led, as are most of the cognitivists with whom they disagree, to overlook critical aspects of how it is that biological systems do what they do. It is the ignoring of these critical aspects of biological control, due to the acceptance of an engineering approach to control, that makes it appear as though control theory and representationalism necessarily go hand-in-hand
Keijzer, Fred A. (2005). Theoretical behaviorism meets embodied cognition: Two theoretical analyses of behavior. Philosophical Psychology 18 (1):123-143.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper aims to do three things: First, to provide a review of John Staddon's book Adaptive dynamics: The theoretical analysis of behavior. Second, to compare Staddon's behaviorist view with current ideas on embodied cognition. Third, to use this comparison to explicate some outlines for a theoretical analysis of behavior that could be useful as a behavioral foundation for cognitive phenomena. Staddon earlier defended a theoretical behaviorism, which allows internal states in its models but keeps these to a minimum while remaining critical of any cognitive interpretation. In his latest book, Adaptive dynamics, he provides an overview and analysis of an extensive number of these current, behaviorist models. Theoretical behaviorism comes close to the view of embodied cognition, which also stresses the importance of behavior in contrast to high-level cognition. A detailed picture of the overlaps and differences between the two approaches will be sketched by comparing the two on four separate issues: the conceptualization of behavior, loopy structures, parsimonious explanations, and cognitive behavior. The paper will stress the need for a structural analysis of behavior to gain a better understanding of both behavior and cognition. However, for this purpose, we will need behavioral science rather than behaviorism
Kelly, Sean D. (2000). Review of Andy Clark, Being There: Putting Brain, Body, and World Together Again. Mind 108:433-7.   (Google)
Abstract: The title of Andy Clark's book is, among other things, a reference to one of the central terms in Martin Heidegger's early work: "Dasein" (being there) is the word that Heidegger uses to refer to beings like ourselves. Clark is no Heidegger scholar, but the reference is deliberate; among the predecessors to his book he lists not only Heidegger himself, but also the American Heidegger scholar Hubert Dreyfus and the French Heideggerean phenomenologist Maurice Merleau-Ponty. This triumvirate has played an increasingly important role in recent years among the "alternative" cognitive science set, owing largely to the influence of Dreyfus's 1979 book What Computers Can't Do (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1979), which enlisted Heideggerian and Merleau-Pontean arguments in the fight against classical symbolic processing approaches to artificial intelligence. Clark's book fits squarely in this "alternative" tradition, and it is an important contribution to the existing literature. It surveys a large array of results in cognitive scientifically oriented fields ranging from robotics to developmental psychology, and it argues convincingly that these results should encourage us to embrace a radical new research paradigm in the cognitive sciences. The central claim is that mainstream cognitive scientists should, like their more revolutionary colleagues, learn to substitute for "the disembodied, atemporal intellectualist vision of mind ... the image of mind as a controller of embodied action" (p. 7). As a clear and brightly written account of this alternative movement in cognitive science, and perhaps even as a kind of mission statement for the new paradigm, Clark's book is one of the finest I have read. It is limited, however, by the fact that the interesting and well-described empirical work that forms the center of his presentation does not always provide sufficient resources for addressing the equally important philosophical problems lurking
Kirsh, David (1996). Adapting the Environment instead of Oneself. Adaptive Behavior 4 (3-4):415-452.   (Google)
Abstract: This paper examines some of the methods animals and humans have of adapting their environment. Because there are limits on how many different tasks a creature can be designed to do well in, creatures with the capacity to redesign their environments have an adaptive advantage over those who can only passively adapt to existing environmental structures. To clarify environmental redesign I rely on the formal notion of a task environment as a directed graph where the nodes are states and the links are actions. One natural form of redesign is to change the topology of this graph structure so as to increase the likelihood of task success or to reduce its expected cost, measured in physical terms. This may be done by eliminating initial states hence eliminating choice points; by changing the action repertoire; by changing the consequence function; and lastly, by adding choice points. Another major method for adapting the environment is to change its cognitive congeniality. Such changes leave the state space formally intact but reduce the number and cost of mental operations needed for task success; they reliably increase the speed, accuracy or robustness of performance. The last section of the paper describes several of these epistemic or complementary actions found in human performance.
Kirsh, David (2006). Distributed cognition: A methodological note. Pragmatics and Cognition 14 (2):249-262.   (Cited by 10 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Humans are closely coupled with their environments. They rely on being ëembeddedí to help coordinate the use of their internal cognitive resources with external tools and resources. Consequently, everyday cognition, even cognition in the absence, may be viewed as partially distributed. As cognitive scientists our job is to discover and explain the principles governing this distribution: principles of coordination, externalization, and interaction. As designers our job is to use these principles, especially if they can be converted to metrics, in order to invent and evaluate candidate designs. After discussing a few principles of interaction and embedding I discuss the usefulness of a range of metrics derived from economics, computational complexity and psychology.
Kirsh, David (2005). Metacognition, Distributed Cognition and Visual Design. In Peter Gardenfors, Petter Johansson & N. J. Mahwah (eds.), Cognition, education, and communication technology. Erlbaum Associates.   (Google)
Abstract: Metacognition is associated with planning, monitoring, evaluating and repairing performance Designers of elearning systems can improve the quality of their environments by explicitly structuring the visual and interactive display of learning contexts to facilitate metacognition. Typically page layout, navigational appearance, visual and interactivity design are not viewed as major factors in metacognition. This is because metacognition tends to be interpreted as a process in the head, rather than an interactive one. It is argued here, that cognition and metacognition are part of a continuum and that both are highly interactive. The tenets of this view are explained by reviewing some of the core assumptions of the situated and distribute approach to cognition and then further elaborated by exploring the notions of active vision, visual complexity, affordance landscape and cue structure. The way visual cues are structured and the way interaction is designed can make an important difference in the ease and effectiveness of cognition and metacognition. Documents that make effective use of markers such as headings, callouts, italics can improve students' ability to comprehend documents and 'plan' the way they review and process content. Interaction can be designed to improve 'the proximal zone of planning' - the look ahead and apprehension of what is nearby in activity space that facilitates decisions. This final concept is elaborated in a discussion of how e-newspapers combine effective visual and interactive design to enhance user control over their reading experience.
Kirsh, David & Maglio, P. (1995). On distinguishing epistemic from pragmatic action. Cognitive Science 18:513-49.   (Cited by 246 | Google | More links)
Abstract: We present data and argument to show that in Tetris - a real-time interactive video game - certain cognitive and perceptual problems are more quickly, easily, and reliably solved by performing actions in the world rather than by performing computational actions in the head alone. We have found that some translations and rotations are best understood as using the world to improve cognition. These actions are not used to implement a plan, or to implement a reaction; they are used to change the world in order to simplify the problem-solving task. Thus, we distinguish pragmatic actions ñ actions performed to bring one physically closer to a goal - from epistemic actions - actions performed to uncover information that is hidden or hard to compute mentally. To illustrate the need for epistemic actions, we first develop a standard information-processing model of Tetris-cognition, and show that it cannot explain performance data from human players of the game - even when we relax the assumption of fully sequential processing. Standard models disregard many actions taken by players because they appear unmotivated or superfluous. However, we describe many such actions that are actually taken by players that are far from superfluous, and that play valuable roles in improving human performance. We argue that traditional accounts are limited because they regard action as having a single function: to change the world. By recognizing a second function of action - an epistemic function - we can explain many of the actions that a traditional model cannot. Although, our argument is supported by numerous examples specifically from Tetris, we outline how the one category of epistemic action can be incorporated into theories of action more generally.
Kirsh, David (2009). Problem Solving and Situated Cognition. In Philip Robbins & M. Aydede (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Situated Cognition. Cambridge.   (Google)
Abstract: In the course of daily life we solve problems often enough that there is a special term to characterize the activity and the right to expect a scientific theory to explain its dynamics. The classical view in psychology is that to solve a problem a subject must frame it by creating an internal representation of the problem‘s structure, usually called a problem space. This space is an internally generable representation that is mathematically identical to a graph structure with nodes and links. The nodes can be annotated with useful information, and the whole representation can be distributed over internal and external structures such as symbolic notations on paper or diagrams. If the representation is distributed across internal and external structures the subject must be able to keep track of activity in the distributed structure. Problem solving proceeds as the subject works from an initial state in this mentally supported space, actively construction possible solution paths, evaluating them and heuristically choosing the best. Control of this exploratory process is not well understood, as it is not always systematic, but various heuristic search algorithms have been proposed and some experimental support has been provided for them.
Kirsh, David (1995). The intelligent use of space. Artificial Intelligence 73:31-68.   (Google)
Abstract: The objective of this essay is to provide the beginning of a principled classification of some of the ways space is intelligently used. Studies of planning have typically focused on the temporal ordering of action, leaving as unaddressed questions of where to lay down instruments, ingredients, work-in-progress, and the like. But, in having a body, we are spatially located creatures: we must always be facing some direction, have only certain objects in view, be within reach of certain others. How we manage the spatial arrangement of items around us is not an afterthought: it is an integral part of the way we think, plan, and behave. The proposed classification has three main categories: spatial arrangements that simplify choice; spatial arrangements that simplify perception; and spatial dynamics that simplify internal computation. The data for such a classification is drawn from videos of cooking, assembly and packing, everyday observations in supermarkets, workshops and playrooms, and experimental studies of subjects playing Tetris, the computer game. This study, therefore, focuses on interactive processes in the medium and short term: on how agents set up their workplace for particular tasks, and how they continuously manage that workplace.
Kirsh, David (1995). Why We Use Our Hands When We Think. Proceedings of the Seventheenth Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society.   (Google)
Abstract: A complementary strategy can be defined as any organizing activity which recruits external elements to reduce cognitive loads. Typical organizing activities include pointing, arranging the position and orientation of nearby objects, writing things down, manipulating counters, rulers or other artifacts that can encode the state of a process or simplify perception. To illustrate the idea of a complementary strategy, a simple experiment was performed in which subjects were asked to determine the dollar value of collections of coins. In the no-hands condition, subjects were not allowed to touch the coin images or to move their hands in any way. In the hands condition, they were allowed to use their hands and fingers however they liked. Significant improvements in time and number of errors were observed when S's used their hands over when they did not. To explain these facts, a brief account of some commonly observed complementary strategies is presented, and an account of their potential benefits to perception, memory and attention.
Kushmerick, Nicholas (1997). Software agents and their bodies. Minds and Machines 7 (2):227-247.   (Cited by 21 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Within artificial intelligence and the philosophy of mind,there is considerable disagreement over the relationship between anagent's body and its capacity for intelligent behavior. Some treatthe body as peripheral and tangential to intelligence; others arguethat embodiment and intelligence are inextricably linked. Softwareagents–-computer programs that interact with software environmentssuch as the Internet–-provide an ideal context in which to studythis tension. I develop a computational framework for analyzingembodiment. The framework generalizes the notion of a body beyondmerely having a physical presence. My analysis sheds light oncertain claims made about the relevance of the body to intelligence,as well as on embodiment in software worlds
Lethin, Anton (2002). How do we embody intentionality? In Martin Hahn & B. Ramberg (eds.), Reflections and Replies: Essays on the Philosophy of Tyler Burge. MIT Press.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Loren, L. A. & Dietrich, Eric (1997). Merleau-ponty, embodied cognition, and the problem of intentionality. Cybernetics and Systems 28:345-58.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Losonsky, Michael (1995). Emdedded systems vs. individualism. Minds and Machines 5 (3):357-71.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   The dispute between individualism and anti-individualism is about the individuation of psychological states, and individualism, on some accounts, is committed to the claim that psychological subjects together with their environments do not constitute integrated computational systems. Hence on this view the computational states that explain psychological states in computational accounts of mind will not involve the subject''s natural and social environment. Moreover, the explanation of a system''s interaction with the environment is, on this view, not the primary goal of computational theorizing. Recent work in computational developmental psychology (by A. Karmiloff-Smith and J. Rutkowska) as well as artificial agents or embedded artificial systems (by L.P. Kaelbling, among others) casts doubt on these claims. In these computational models, the environment does not just trigger and sustain input for computational operations, but some computational operations actually involve environmental structures
MacCannell, Juliet Flower & Zakarin, Laura (eds.) (1994). Thinking Bodies. Stanford University Press.   (Google)
Abstract: The essays collected in this volume attest to a renewal of philosophical interest in how bodies think and how thought is embodied, a philosophy that has been deeply influenced by literature, the arts, and psychoanalysis. The contributors here consider the body in thought at the dawning of a 'postmodern' world that demands new ethical reflection, and they all cross in some ways the lines of division traditionally drawn between art and philosophy, high and low, first and third cultures. They do so using the body as common ground for their passage. The contributors provide a wide range of approaches to the bodily dimension of ideas in post-structuralist criticism from differing historical perspectives
Mainzer, Klaus (2005). The embodied mind: On computational, evolutionary, and philosophical interpretations of cognition. Synthesis Philosophica 2 (40):389-406.   (Google | More links)
Mandik, Pete & Grush, Rick (2002). Representational parts. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 1 (389):394.   (Google)
Abstract: In this reply we claim that, contra Dreyfus, the kinds of skillful performances Dreyfus discusses _are_ representational. We explain this proposal, and then defend it against an objection to the effect that the representational notion we invoke is a weak one countenancing only some global state of an organism as a representation. According to this objection, such a representation is not a robust, projectible property of an organism, and hence will gain no explana- tory leverage in cognitive scientific explanations. We argue on conceptual and empirical grounds that the representations we have identified are not weak unprojectible global states of organisms, but instead genuinely explanatory representational parts of persons
Mandik, Pete & Clark, Andy (2002). Selective representing and world-making. Minds and Machines 12 (3):383-395.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   In this paper, we discuss the thesis of selective representing –- the idea that the contents of the mental representations had by organisms are highly constrained by the biological niches within which the organisms evolved. While such a thesis has been defended by several authors elsewhere, our primary concern here is to take up the issue of the compatibility of selective representing and realism. In this paper we hope to show three things. First, that the notion of selective representing is fully consistent with the realist idea of a mind-independent world. Second, that not only are these two consistent, but that the latter (the realist conception of a mind-independent world) provides the most powerful perspective from which to motivate and understand the differing perceptual and cognitive profiles themselves. And third, that the (genuine and important) sense in which organism and environment may together constitute an integrated system of scientific interest poses no additional threat to the realist conception
Mandik, Pete (2003). Varieties of representation in evolved and embodied neural networks. Biology and Philosophy 18 (1):95-130.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   In this paper I discuss one of the key issuesin the philosophy of neuroscience:neurosemantics. The project of neurosemanticsinvolves explaining what it means for states ofneurons and neural systems to haverepresentational contents. Neurosemantics thusinvolves issues of common concern between thephilosophy of neuroscience and philosophy ofmind. I discuss a problem that arises foraccounts of representational content that Icall ``the economy problem'': the problem ofshowing that a candidate theory of mentalrepresentation can bear the work requiredwithin in the causal economy of a mind and anorganism. My approach in the current paper isto explore this and other key themes inneurosemantics through the use of computermodels of neural networks embodied and evolvedin virtual organisms. The models allow for thelaying bare of the causal economies of entireyet simple artificial organisms so that therelations between the neural bases of, forinstance, representation in perception andmemory can be regarded in the context of anentire organism. On the basis of thesesimulations, I argue for an account ofneurosemantics adequate for the solution of theeconomy problem
Marsh, Leslie (forthcoming). Hayek: Cognitive Scientist Avant La Lettre. In William Butos, Roger Koppl & Steve Horwitz (eds.), Advances in Austrian Economics. Emerald.   (Google)
Abstract: This paper conceives of Hayek’s overall project as presenting a theory of sociocognition, explication of which has a two-fold purpose: (1) to locate Hayek within the non-Cartesian tradition of cognitive science, and (2) to show how Hayek’s philosophical psychology infuses his social theory.
Marsh, Leslie (2005). Review Essay: Andy Clark's Natural-Born Cyborgs: Minds, Technologies, and the Future of Human Intelligence_. Cognitive Systems Research 6:405-409.   (Google)
Abstract: The notion of the cyborg has exercised the popular imagination for almost two hundred years. In very general terms the idea that a living entity can be a hybrid of both organic matter and mechanical parts, and for all intents and purposes be seamlessly functional and self-regulating, was prefigured in literary works such as Shellys Frankenstein (1816/18) and Samuel Butlers Erewhon (1872). This notion of hybridism has been a staple theme of 20th century science fiction writing, television programmes and the cinema. For the most part, these works trade on a deep sense of unease we have about our personal identity – how could some non-organic matter to which I have so little conscious access count as a bona fide part of me? Cognitive scientist and philosopher, Andy Clark, picks up this general theme and presents an empirical and philosophical case for the following inextricably linked theses.
Maturana, Humberto (online). Autopoiesis, structural coupling and cognition.   (Cited by 36 | Google)
McClamrock, Ron (1995). Existential Cognition: Computational Minds in the World. University of Chicago Press.   (Cited by 88 | Google | More links)
Abstract: While the notion of the mind as information-processor--a kind of computational system--is widely accepted, many scientists and philosophers have assumed that this account of cognition shows that the mind's operations are characterizable independent of their relationship to the external world. Existential Cognition challenges the internalist view of mind, arguing that intelligence, thought, and action cannot be understood in isolation, but only in interaction with the outside world. Arguing that the mind is essentially embedded in the external world, Ron McClamrock provides a schema that allows cognitive scientists to address such long-standing problems in artificial intelligence as the "frame" problem and the issue of "bounded" rationality. Extending this schema to cover progress in other studies of behavior, including language, vision, and action, McClamrock reinterprets the importance of the organism/environment distinction. McClamrock also considers the broader philosophical question of the place of mind in the world, particularly with regard to questions of intentionality, subjectivity, and phenomenology. With implications for philosophy, cognitive and computer science, AI, and psychology, this book synthesizes state-of-the-art work in philosophy and cognitive science on how the mind interacts with the world to produce thoughts, ideas, and actions
Meijsing, Monica (ms). Real people and virtual bodies: How disembodied can embodiment be?   (Google | More links)
Abstract: It is widely accepted that embodiment is crucial for any self-aware agent. What is less obvious is whether the body has to be real, or whether a virtual body will do. In that case the notion of embodiment would be so attenuated as to be almost indistinguishable from disembodiment. In this article I concentrate on the notion of embodiment in human agents. Could we be disembodied, having no real body, as brains-in-a-vat with only a virtual body? Thought experiments alone will not suffice to answer this Cartesian question. I will draw on both philosophical arguments and empirical data on phantom phenomena. My argument will proceed in three steps. Firstly I will show that phantom phenomena provide a prima facie argument that real embodiment is not necessary for a human being. Secondly I will give a philosophical argument that real movement must precede the intention to move and to act. Agents must at least have had real bodies once. Empirical data seems to bear this out. Finally, however, I will show that a small number of aplasic phantom phenomena undermines this last argument. Most people must have had a real body. But for some people a partly virtual, unreal, phantom body seems to suffice. Yet though there is thus no knockdown argument that we could not be brains-in-a-vat, we still have good reasons to suppose that embodiment must be real, and not virtual
Melser, Derek (2004). The Act of Thinking. Cambridge MA: Bradford Book/MIT Press.   (Cited by 3 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The Act of Thinking opens up a large new area for philosophical research.
Menary, Richard (2007). Cognitive Integration: Mind and Cognition Unbounded. Palgrave Macmillan.   (Google)
Abstract: In Cognitive Integration: Attacking The Bounds of Cognition Richard Menary argues that the real pay-off from extended-mind-style arguments is not a new form of externalism in the philosophy of mind, but a view in which the 'internal' and 'external' aspects of cognition are integrated into a whole. Menary argues that the manipulation of external vehicles constitutes cognitive processes and that cognition is hybrid: internal and external processes and vehicles complement one another in the completion of cognitive tasks. However, we cannot make good on these claims without understanding the cognitive norms by which we manipulate bodily external vehicles of cognition. Shaun Gallagher: “Menary sets out some extremely welcome clarifications that help to integrate the models of embodied and extended cognition. He not only provides convincing responses to all of the main objections that have been made against these approaches, he also puts flesh on the integrated model by incorporating concepts such as epistemic action, by expanding the discussion to include a Peircean view of representation, by demonstrating its evolutionary roots, and by exploring its implications for language and cognition. This is one of those books that takes us forward a number of giant steps. Menary makes it comprehensive and comprehensible.”
Menary, Richard (2006). Radical Enactivism: Intentionality, Phenomenology and Narrative: Focus on the Philosophy of Daniel D. Hutto. Amsterdam: J Benjamins.   (Google)
Abstract: This collection is a much-needed remedy to the confusion about which varieties of enactivism are robust yet viable rejections of traditional representionalism...
Menary, Richard (2006). Radical Enactivism: Intentionality, Phenomenology, and Narrative. John Benjamins.   (Google)
Abstract: “ is collection is a much-needed remedy to the confusion about which varieties of enactivism are robust yet viable rejections of traditional representationalism approaches to cognitivism – and which are not. Hutto’s paper is the pivot around which the expert commentators, enactivists and non-enactivists alike, sketch out the implications of enactivism for a wide variety of issues: perception, emotion, the theory of content, cognition, development, social interaction, and more. e inclusion of thoughtful replies from Hutto gives the volume a further degree of depth and integration o en lacking in collections of essays. Anyone interested in assessing the current cutting-edge developments in the
Metzinger, Thomas (2006). Reply to Gallagher: Different conceptions of embodiment. Psyche 12 (4).   (Google)
Abstract: Gallagher is right in pointing out that scientific realism is an implicit background assumption of BNO, and that I did not give an independent argument for it. He is also right in saying that science does not _demonstrate_ the existence of certain entities, but that it assumes those entities in a process of explanation and theory formation. However, it is not true that science, as Gallagher writes (p.2), “simply” assumes the reality of certain things: such assumptions are embedded in the context of an attempt to find the_ minimal _ set of ontological assumptions one has to make relative to a set of explanatory goals and relative to a specific data set in a certain domain. This parsimonious spirit is also the
PSYCHE: http://psyche.cs.monash.edu.au/
spirit of SMT, which can be seen as a search for the minimal conditions under which a phenomenal self and a consciously experienced first-person perspective can emerge
Mole, Christopher (2009). Illusions, Demonstratives and the Zombie Action Hypothesis. Mind 118 (472).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: David Milner and Melvyn Goodale, and the many psychologists and philosophers who have been influenced by their work, claim that ‘the visual system that gives us our visual experience of the world is not the same system that guides our movements in the world’. The arguments that have been offered for this surprising claim place considerable weight on two sources of evidence — visual form agnosia and the reaching behaviour of normal subjects when picking up objects that induce visual illusions. The present article shows that, if we are careful to consider the possibility that a demonstrative gesture can contribute content to a conscious experience, then neither source of evidence is compelling.
Morgan, C. Lloyd (1903). An Introduction to Comparative Psychology. London: Walter Scott Publishing.   (Cited by 183 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Hesperides Press are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork.
Morasso, Pietro (2007). The crucial role of haptic perception: Consciousness as the emergent property of the interaction between brain body and environment. In Antonio Chella & Riccardo Manzotti (eds.), Artificial Consciousness. Imprint Academic.   (Google)
O'Donovan-Anderson, Michael (1997). Content and Comportment: On Embodiment and the Epistemic Availability of the World. Lanham: Rowman &Amp; Littlefield.   (Google)
Abstract: "Content and Comportment argues persuasively that the answer to some long-standing questions in epistemology and metaphysics lies in taking up the neglected question of the role of our bodily activity in establishing connections between representational states—knowledge and belief in particular—and their objects in the world. It takes up these ideas from both current mainstream analytic philosophy—Frege, Dummett, Davidson, Evans—and from mainstream continental work—Heidegger and his commentators and critics—and bings them together successfully in a way that should surprise only those who persist in maintaining this barren dichotymization of the field."
Poirier, Pierre, Be there, or be square! On the importance of being there.   (Google)
Abstract: By using the name of one of his first papers (See Clark 1987) for his latest book, Andy Clark proves how consistent his view of the mind has been over his career. Indeed Being There becomes the latest in a ten year effort, laid out over a series of books, to flesh out one of the few comprehensive proposals in philosophy of mind since Fodor’s Representational Theory of Mind (RTM). Each book in the series accentuates one aspect of Clark’s view. The first, Microcognition (Clark 1989), explores the importance of implementation. Except for a few pockets of resistance, the issue of implementation is by now wholly resolved in Clark’s favor but was, at the time, generally hostile to the idea of implementation (or "mere implementation" as it was commonly referred to back then) in studies of the mind. The second, Associative Engines (Clark 1993), stresses the importance of developmental issues, an idea that is still making waves in the cognitive science and neuroscience community (think of the flurry of models and experiments on developing theories of the mind (Carey 1985, Gopnik 1988, Gopnik and Meltzoff 1996). This latest effort argues for the importance of ecological issues, both for our general view of the mind and our explanation models in cognitive science. It explores the importance of being situated in a body and an environment, the importance of being there. Although each theme accentuated by Clark's books (implementation, development, and ecology) is generally biological in nature, Clark, unlike other biological views of the mind who tend to stress one biological aspect over the others, constantly manages to balance the different aspects in what amounts to perhaps the only integrated, or at least the most complete to date, biological view of the mind
Prinz, Jesse (web). Is consciousness embodied? In P. Robbins & M. Aydede (eds.), Cambridge Handbook of Situated Cognition. Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: 1. Introduction Consciousness is trendy. It seems that more pages are published on consciousness these days than on any other subject in the philosophy of mind. Embodiment and situated cognition are also trendy. They mark a significant departure from orthodox theories, and are thus appealing to radicals and renegades. It
Reynaert, Peter (2001). A phenomenology for qualia and naturalizing embodiment. Communication and Cognition 34 (1-2):139-154.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Rietveld, Erik (2010). McDowell and Dreyfus on Unreflective Action. Inquiry 53 (2):183-207.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Within philosophy there is not yet an integrative account of unreflective skillful action. As a starting point, contributions would be required from philosophers from both the analytic and continental traditions. Starting from the McDowell-Dreyfus debate, shared Aristotelian-Wittgensteinian common ground is identified. McDowell and Dreyfus agree about the importance of embodied skills, situation-specific discernment and responsiveness to relevant affordances. This sheds light on the embodied and situated nature of adequate unreflective action and provides a starting point for the development of an account that does justice to insights from both philosophical traditions.
Rietveld, Erik (2008). Situated normativity: The normative aspect of embodied cognition in unreflective action. Mind 117 (468):973-1001.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In everyday life we often act adequately, yet without deliberation. For instance, we immediately obtain and maintain an appropriate distance from others in an elevator. The notion of normativity implied here is a very basic one, namely distinguishing adequate from inadequate, correct from incorrect, or better from worse in the context of a particular situation. In the first part of this paper I investigate such ‘situated normativity’ by focusing on unreflective expert action. More particularly, I use Wittgenstein’s examples of craftsmen (tailors and architects) absorbed in action to introduce situated normativity. Situated normativity can be understood as the normative aspect of embodied cognition in unreflective skillful action. I develop Wittgenstein’s insight that a peculiar type of affective behaviour, ‘directed discontent’, is essential for getting things right without reflection. Directed discontent is a reaction of appreciation in action and is introduced as a paradigmatic expression of situated normativity. In the second part I discuss Wittgenstein’s ideas on the normativity of what he calls ‘blind’ rule-following and the ‘bedrock’ of immediate action. What matters for understanding the normativity of (even ‘blind’) rule-following, is not that one has the capacity for linguistic articulation or reflection but that one is reliably participating in a communal custom. In the third part I further investigate the complex relationships between unreflective skillful action, perception, emotion, and normativity. Part of this entails an account of the link between normativity at the level of the expert’s socio-cultural practice and the individual’s situated and lived normativity.
Rietveld, Erik (2008). The Skillful Body as a Concernful System of Possible Actions: Phenomena and Neurodynamics. Theory & Psychology 18 (3):341-361.   (Google)
Abstract: For Merleau-Ponty,consciousness in skillful coping is a matter of prereflective ‘I can’ and not explicit ‘I think that.’ The body unifies many domain-specific capacities. There exists a direct link between the perceived possibilities for action in the situation (‘affordances’) and the organism’s capacities. From Merleau-Ponty’s descriptions it is clear that in a flow of skillful actions, the leading ‘I can’ may change from moment to moment without explicit deliberation. How these transitions occur, however, is less clear. Given that Merleau-Ponty suggested that a better understanding of the self-organization of brain and behavior is important, I will re-read his descriptions of skillful coping in the light of recent ideas on neurodynamics. Affective processes play a crucial role in evaluating the motivational significance of objects and contribute to the individual’s prereflective responsiveness to relevant affordances.
Rosenschein, S. J. & Kaelbling, L. P. (1995). A situated view of representation and control. Artificial Intelligence 73:149-73.   (Cited by 96 | Google | More links)
Rosen, Steven M. (2000). Focusing on the Flesh: Merleau-Ponty, Gendlin, and Lived Subjectivity. Lifwynn Correspondence 5 (1):1-14.   (Google)
Rowlands, Mark (2006). Body Language: Representation in Action. Cambridge MA: Bradford Book/MIT Press.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Abstract: This is not to say simply that these forms of acting can facilitate representation but that they are themselves representational.
Rupert, Robert D. (ms). Against Group Cognitive States.   (Google)
Rupert, Robert D. (forthcoming). Cognitive Systems and the Supersized Mind. Philosophical Studies.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In Supersizing the Mind: Embodiment, Action, and Cognitive Extension (Clark, 2008), Andy Clark bolsters his case for the extended mind thesis and casts a critical eye on some related views for which he has less enthusiasm. To these ends, the book canvasses a wide range of empirical results concerning the subtle manner in which the human organism and its environment interact in the production of intelligent behavior. This fascinating research notwithstanding, Supersizing does little to assuage my skepticism about the hypotheses of extended cognition and extended mind. In particular, Supersizing fails to make the case for the extended view as a revolutionary thesis in the theoretical foundations of cognitive science
Rupert, Robert D. (forthcoming). Critical Study of Andy Clark's Supersizing the Mind. Journal of Mind and Behavior.   (Google)
Rupert, Robert D. (2009). Innateness and the situated mind. In P. Robbins & M. Aydede (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Situated Cognition. Cambridge University Press.   (Google)
Abstract: forthcoming in P. Robbins and M. Aydede (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Situated Cognition (Cambridge UP)
Rupert, Robert D. (ms). Keeping HEC in CHEC.   (Google)
Rupert, Robert D. (forthcoming). Nativism and empiricism, and situated cognition. In P. Robbins & Murat Aydede (eds.), Cambridge Handbook on Situated Cognition. Cambridge.   (Google)
Rupert, Robert D. (forthcoming). Representation in extended cognitive systems: Does the scaffolding of language extend the mind? In Richard Menary (ed.), The Extended Mind. MIT Press.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Abstract: forthcoming in R. Menary (ed.), The Extended Mind
Rupert, Robert D. (2010). Systems, Functions, and Intrinsic Natures: On Adams and Aizawa's The Bounds of Cognition. Philosophical Psychology.   (Google)
Abstract: Review essay contrasting Adams and Aizawa's approach to cognition with a functionalist, systems-based view.
Saidel, Eric (1999). Critical notice of Andy Clark, Being There. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 29 (2):299-317.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Schulkin, Jay (2006). Cognitive functions, bodily sensibility and the brain. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 5 (3-4).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Body representations traverse the whole of the brain. They provide vital sources of information for every facet of an animal’s behavior, and such direct neural connectivity of visceral input throughout the nervous system demonstrates just how strongly cognitive systems are linked to bodily representations. At each level of the neural axis there are visceral appraisal systems that are integral in the organization of action. Cognition is not one side of a divide and viscera the other, with action merely a reflexive outcome. There is no divide between cognition and bodily functions once the brain is involved. Cognitive mechanisms that permeate neural function are a cardinal piece of biological function and adaptation
Scott Jordan, J. (2000). The role of "control" in an embodied cognition. Philosophical Psychology 13 (2):233 – 237.   (Google)
Abstract: Borrett, Kelly, and Kwan follow the lead of Merleau-Ponty and develop a theory of neural-network modeling that emerges out of what they find wrong with current approaches to thought and action. Specifically, they take issue with "cognitivism" and its tendency to model cognitive agents as controlling, representational systems. While attempting to make the point that pre-predicative experience/action/place (i.e. grasping) involves neither representation nor control, the authors imply that control-theoretic concepts and representationalism necessarily go hand-in-hand. The purpose of the present paper is to demonstrate that this is not the case. Rather, it will be argued that such necessity is only assumed because the authors attempt to apply the control theory of servo-mechanisms to the behavior of organisms. By adopting this engineering control-theoretic perspective, the authors are led, as are most of the cognitivists with whom they disagree, to overlook critical aspects of how it is that biological systems do what they do. It is the ignoring of these critical aspects of biological control, due to the acceptance of an engineering approach to control, that makes it appear as though control theory and representationalism necessarily go hand-in-hand
Selinger, Evan & Collins, Harry (2007). Interactional expertise and embodiment. Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science 38 (4):722-740.   (Google)
Shapiro, Larry (2007). The embodied cognition research programme. Philosophy Compass 2 (2):338–346.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Embodied Cognition is an approach to cognition that departs from traditional cognitive science in its reluctance to conceive of cognition as computational and in its emphasis on the significance of an organism’s body in how and what the organism thinks. Three lines of embodied cognition research are described and some thoughts on the future of embodied cognition offered
Smith, David Woodruff (1988). Bodily versus cognitive intentionality. Noûs 22 (March):51-52.   (Google)
Abstract: The body, merleau-ponty claimed, carries a unique form of intentionality that is not reducible to the intentionality of thought. i propose to separate several different forms of intentionality concerning such ``bodily intentionality'': awareness of one's body and bodily movement; purposive action; and perception of one's environment in acting. these different forms of awareness are interdependent in specific ways. no one form of intentionality--cognitive or practical--is an absolute foundation for the others
Spaulding, Shannon (2010). Embodied cognition and mindreading. Mind and Language 25 (1):119-140.   (Google)
Abstract: Recently, philosophers and psychologists defending the embodied cognition research program have offered arguments against mindreading as a general model of our social understanding. The embodied cognition arguments are of two kinds: those that challenge the developmental picture of mindreading and those that challenge the alleged ubiquity of mindreading. Together, these two kinds of arguments, if successful, would present a serious challenge to the standard account of human social understanding. In this paper, I examine the strongest of these embodied cognition arguments and argue that mindreading approaches can withstand the best of these arguments from embodied cognition
Sterelny, Kim (2000). Roboroach, or, the extended phenotype meets cognitive science. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 61 (1):207-215.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Stuart, Susan A. J. (2002). A radical notion of embeddedness: A logically necessary precondition for agency and self-awareness. Metaphilosophy 33 (1-2):98-109.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Cosmelli, Diego & Thompson, Evan (web). Embodiment or envatment? Reflections on the bodily basis of consciousness. In J. Stewart, O. Gapenne & E Di Paolo (eds.), Enaction: Towards a New Paradigm for Cognitive Science. MIT Press.   (Google)
Todes, Samuel (1990). The Human Body as Material Subject of the World. Garland Pub..   (Google)
Tschacher, Wolfgang & Scheier, Christian (1996). The perspective of situated and self-organizing cognition in cognitive psychology. Communication and Cognition-Artificial Intelligence 13 (2-3):163-189.   (Cited by 4 | Google)
van Gelder, Tim (1993). The distinction between mind and cognition. In Yu-Houng H. Houng, J. Ho & Y.H. Houng (eds.), Mind and Cognition: 1993 International Symposium. Academia Sinica.   (Cited by 5 | Annotation | Google)
Varela, Francisco; Thompson, Evan & Rosch, Eleanor (1991). The Embodied Mind: Cognitive Science and Human Experience. MIT Press.   (Cited by 2048 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The Embodied Mind provides a unique, sophisticated treatment of the spontaneous and reflective dimension of human experience.
Vera, A. H. & Simon, Herbert A. (1993). Situated action: A symbolic interpretation. Cognitive Science 17:7-48.   (Cited by 243 | Google)
Vesey, Godfrey N. A. (1965). The Embodied Mind. London,: Allen Unwin.   (Cited by 15 | Google)
Walker, Jeremy (1969). Embodiment and self-knowledge. Dialogue 8 (June):44-67.   (Google)
Walmsley, Joel (2008). Methodological Situatedness; or, DEEDS Worth Doing and Pursuing. Cognitive Systems Research 9:150-159.   (Google)
Abstract: This paper draws a distinction between two possible understandings of the DEEDS (Dynamical, Embodied, Extended, Distributed and Situated) approach to cognition. On the one hand, the DEEDS approach may be interpreted as making a metaphysical claim about the nature and location of cognitive processes. On the other hand, the DEEDS approach may be read as providing a methodological prescription about how we ought to conduct cognitive scientific research. I argue that the latter, methodological, reading shows that the DEEDS approach is pursuitworthy independently of an assessment of the truth of the metaphysical claim. Understood in this way, the DEEDS approach may avoid some of the objections that have been levelled against it.
Weiskopf, Daniel A. (online). Embodied cognition and linguistic understanding.   (Google)
Abstract: Traditionally, the language faculty was supposed to be a device that maps linguistic inputs to semantic or conceptual representations. These representations themselves were supposed to be distinct from the representations manipulated by the hearer.s perceptual and motor systems. Recently this view of language has been challenged by advocates of embodied cognition. Drawing on empirical studies of linguistic comprehension, they have proposed that the language faculty reuses the very representations and processes deployed in perceiving and acting. I review some of the evidence in favor of the embodied view of language comprehension, and argue that none of it is conclusive. Moreover, the embodied view itself blurs two important distinctions: first, the distinction between linguistic comprehension and its typical consequences; and second, the distinction between representational content and vehicles. Given that these distinctions are well-motivated, we have good reason to reject the embodied view of linguistic understanding
Wells, Andrew (1996). Situated action, symbol systems and universal computation. Minds and Machines 6 (1):33-46.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Vera & Simon (1993a) have argued that the theories and methods known as situated action or situativity theory are compatible with the assumptions and methodology of the physical symbol systems hypothesis and do not require a new approach to the study of cognition. When the central criterion of computational universality is added to the loose definition of a symbol system which Vera and Simon provide, it becomes apparent that there are important incompatibilities between the two approaches such that situativity theory cannot be subsumed within the symbol systems approach. Symbol systems and situativity theoretic approaches are, and should be seen to be, competing approaches to the study of cognition
Wider, Kathleen (1997). The Bodily Nature of Consciousness: Sartre and Contemporary Philosophy of Mind. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.   (Cited by 21 | Google | More links)
Wilkerson, William S. (1999). From bodily motions to bodily intentions: The perception of bodily activity. Philosophical Psychology 12 (1):61-77.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract: This paper argues that one's perception of another person's bodily activity is not the perception of the mere flexing and bending of that person's limbs, but rather of that person's intentions. It makes its case in three parts. First, it examines what conditions are necessary for children to begin to imitate and assimilate the behavior of other adults and argues that these conditions include the perception of intention. These conditions generalize to adult perception as well. Second, changing methodologies, the paper presents a first person phenomenology of watching another person act which demonstrates that one's own perception is of intentions. The phenomenological analysis of time consciousness is the keystone of this argument. Finally, the paper looks at some recently established facts about infant and child development, and shows that these facts are best explained by thinking that the child is already perceiving intention
Wilson, Robert A. & Clark, Andy (2009). How to situate cognition: Letting nature take its course. In Murat Aydede & P. Robbins (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Situated Cognition. Cambridge.   (Cited by 5 | Google | More links)
Abstract: 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
Wilson, Margaret (2002). Six Views of Embodied Cognition. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review 9 (4):625--636.   (Google)
Wright, Cory D. (2008). Embodied Cognition: Grounded Until Further Notice? British Journal of Psychology 99:157-164.   (Google)
Zaner, R. M. (1964). The Problem Of Embodiment; Some Contributions To A Phenomenology Of The Body. The Hague: Nijhoff.   (Cited by 16 | Google)
Zhang, Jianhui & Norman, Donald A. (1994). Representations in distributed cognitive tasks. Cognitive Science 18:87-122.   (Cited by 452 | Google | More links)
Ziemke, Tom (2007). The embodied self: Theories, hunches and robot models. Journal of Consciousness Studies 14 (7):167-179.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Many theories and models of machine consciousness emphasize the role of embodiment. However, there are different interpretations of exactly what kind of embodiment would be required for an artifact to be at least potentially conscious. This paper contrasts the sensorimotor approach, which holds that consciousness emerges from the mastery of sensorimotor knowledge resulting from the interaction between agent and environment, with the view that the living body's homeostatic regulation is crucial to self and consciousness

7.1f Animal Cognition

Allen, Colin (1999). Animal concepts revisited: The use of self-monitoring as an empirical approach. Erkenntnis 51 (1):537-544.   (Cited by 13 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Many psychologists and philosophers believe that the close correlation between human language and human concepts makes the attribution of concepts to nonhuman animals highly questionable. I argue for a three-part approach to attributing concepts to animals. The approach goes beyond the usual discrimination tests by seeking evidence for self-monitoring of discrimination errors. Such evidence can be collected without relying on language and, I argue, the capacity for error-detection can only be explained by attributing a kind of internal representation that is reasonably identified as a concept. Thus I hope to have shown that worries about the empirical intractability of concepts in languageless animals are misplaced
Allen, Colin & Hauser, Marc D. (1991). Concept attribution in nonhuman animals: Theoretical and methodological problems in ascribing complex mental processes. Philosophy of Science 58 (2):221-240.   (Google | More links)
Allen, Colin & Bekoff, Marc (1995). Cognitive ethology and the intentionality of animal behavior. Mind and Language 10 (4):313-328.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Allen, Colin & Bekoff, Marc (1992). On aims and methods of cognitive ethology. Philosophy of Science Association 1992:110-124.   (Google)
Allen, Colin & Bekoff, Marc (1997). Species of Mind: The Philosophy and Biology of Cognitive Ethology. MIT Press.   (Cited by 147 | Google)
Abstract: The heart of this book is the reciprocal relationship between philosophical theories of mind and empirical studies of animal cognition.
Andrews, Kristin (online). Animal cognition. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Draft entry for the Stanford Encylcopedia of Philosophy
Andrews, Kristin (2007). Critter psychology. In Daniel Hutto & Matthew Ratcliffe (eds.), Folk Psychology Re-Assessed. Springer.   (Google)
Andrews, Kristin (2005). Chimpanzee theory of mind: Looking in all the wrong places? Mind and Language 20 (5):521-536.   (Cited by 6 | Google | More links)
Abstract: I respond to an argument presented by Daniel Povinelli and Jennifer Vonk that the current generation of experiments on chimpanzee theory of mind cannot decide whether chimpanzees have the ability to reason about mental states. I argue that Povinelli and Vonk’s proposed experiment is subject to their own criticisms and that there should be a more radical shift away from experiments that ask subjects to predict behavior. Further, I argue that Povinelli and Vonk’s theoretical commitments should lead them to accept this new approach, and that experiments which offer subjects the opportunity to look for explanations for anomalous behavior should be explored
Andrews, Kristin (2009). Politics or metaphysics? On attributing psychological properties to animals. Biology and Philosophy 24 (1).   (Google | More links)
Abstract: Biology and Philosophy, forthcoming. Following recent arguments that there is no logical problem with attributing mental or agential states to animals, I address the epistemological problem of how to go about making accurate attributions. I suggest that there is a two-part general method for determining whether a psychological property can be accurately attributed to a member of another species: folk expert opinion and functionality. This method is based on well-known assessments used to attribute mental states to humans who are unable to self-ascribe due to an early stage of development or impairment, and can be used to describe social and emotional development as well as personality. I describe how instruments such as the Child Behavior Checklist, which relies on intersubjective expert opinion, could be modified to assess other species subjects. The measures are validated via the accuracy of the predictions that are derived, which is an example of the functionality of attribution. I respond to theoretical criticisms against use of this method, and argue that if the method counts as good science for infant cognition research, then it should count as good science for animal cognition research as well. Correspondingly, if the method doesn’t count as good science for animal cognition research, then we must be very skeptical of its use with nonverbal humans
Beer, C. G. (1992). Conceptual issues in cognitive ethology. Advances in the Study of Behavior 21:69-109.   (Cited by 10 | Google)
Beisecker, David (1999). The importance of being erroneous: Prospects for animal intentionality. Philosophical Topics 27 (1):281-308.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: The question of animal belief (or animal intentionality) often degenerates into a frustrating and unproductive exchange. Foes of animal intentionality point out that non-linguistic animals couldn’t possibly possess the kinds of mental states we linguistic beings enjoy. They claim that linguistic ability enables us to become sensitive to intensional contexts or to the states of mind of others in a way that is unavailable to the non-linguistic, and that would be necessary for proper attributions of intentionality. To attribute mental states to non-linguistic brutes, no matter how natural it comes to us, would be grossly anthropomorphic. In the face of these challenges some friends of animal intentionality have attempted to show that at least a few animals (chimpanzees, vervet monkeys, honeybees) are capable of engaging in quasi-linguistic, communicative practices that ought to be accorded at least a minimal degree of intentionality. Others have questioned the foes’ necessity claims; linguistic ability, claim these animal friends, isn’t required for sensitivity to intensional contexts, surprise, or belief about belief after all, or if it is, then these features aren’t really requisite for mental capacity. Indeed, if we focus exclusively upon linguistic ability, then we are apt to miss the primitive kinds of mental capacities from which our own full-blooded intentional capacities likely evolved. Animals certainly seem to interact intelligently with their surroundings, so much so that we ought to follow our natural (brute?) anthropomorphic inclinations to credit them with minds. Failing to recognize their genuine intentional capacities would be "brutishly" anthropocentric
Bekoff, Marc (1999). Social cognition: Exchanging and sharing information on the run. Erkenntnis 51 (1):617-632.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   In this essay I consider various aspects of the rapidly growing field of cognitive ethology, concentrating mainly on evolutionary and comparative discussion of the notion of intentionality. I am not concerned with consciousness, per se, for a concentration on consciousness deflects attention from other, and in many cases more interesting, problems in the study of animal cognition. I consider how, when, where, and (attempt to discuss) why individuals from different taxa exchange social information concerning their beliefs, desires, and goals. My main examples come from studies of social play in mammals and antipredator behavior in birds. Basically, I argue that although not all individuals always display behavior patterns that are best explained by appeals to intentionality, it is misleading to argue that such explanations have no place in the study of animal cognition
Bermudez, Jose Luis (2006). Animal reasoning and proto-logic. In Susan L. Hurley & Matthew Nudds (eds.), Rational Animals? Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Bermudez, Jose Luis (2003). Ascribing thoughts to non-linguistic creatures. Facta Philosophica 5 (2):313-34.   (Google)
Bosco, Francesca M. & Tirassa, Maurizio (1998). Sharedness as an innate basis for communication in the infant. In M. A. Gernsbacher & S. J. Derry (eds.), Proceedings of the 20th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society.   (Cited by 9 | Google | More links)
Abstract: From a cognitive perspective, intentional communication may be viewed as an agent's activity overtly aimed at modifying a partner's mental states. According to standard Gricean definitions, this requires each party to be able to ascribe mental states to the other, i.e., to entertain a so-called theory of mind. According to the relevant experimental literature, however, such capability does not appear before the third or fourth birthday; it would follow that children under that age should not be viewed as communicating agents. In order to solve the resulting dilemma, we propose that certain specific components of an agent's cognitive architecture (namely, a peculiar version of sharedness and communicative intention), are necessary and sufficient to explain infant communication in a mentalist framework. We also argue that these components are innate in the human species
Boysen, Sarah T. (2006). Effects of symbols on chimpanzee cognition. In Susan L. Hurley & Matthew Nudds (eds.), Rational Animals? Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Call, Josep (2006). Descartes' two errors: Reason and reflection in the great apes. In Susan L. Hurley & Matthew Nudds (eds.), Rational Animals? Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Chater, Nick & Heyes, Cecilia M. (1994). Animal concepts: Content and discontent. Mind and Language 9 (3):209-246.   (Cited by 18 | Google)
Chadha, Monima (2007). No speech, never mind! Philosophical Psychology 20 (5):641 – 657.   (Google | More links)
Abstract: In a series of classic papers, Donald Davidson put forward an ingenious argument to challenge the ascription of minds to nonlinguistic animals. Davidson's conclusions have been mercilessly demolished in the literature by cognitive ethologists, but none of them have directly addressed Davidson's argument. First, this paper is an attempt to elucidate and evaluate Davidson's central argument for denying minds to nonlinguistic animals. Davidson's central argument puts forth a challenge to those of us who want to attribute minds to nonlinguistic animals. Second, this paper uses counterexamples offered in the cognitive ethology literature to meet Davidson's challenge directly
Clark, Stephen R. L. (2003). Non-personal minds. In Minds and Persons: Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement: 53. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.   (Cited by 2 | Google)
Clark, Stephen R. L. (1987). The description and evaluation of animal emotion. In Colin Blakemore & Susan A. Greenfield (eds.), Mindwaves. Blackwell.   (Google)
Cockburn, David (1994). Human beings and giant squids (on ascribing human sensations and emotions to non-human creatures). Philosophy 69:135-50.   (Google)
Crisp, Roger (1996). Evolution and psychological unity. In Marc Bekoff & Dale W. Jamieson (eds.), Readings in Animal Cognition. MIT Press.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
Currie, Gregory (2006). Rationality, decentring, and the evidence for pretence in nonhuman animals. In Susan L. Hurley & Matthew Nudds (eds.), Rational Animals? Oxford University Press.   (Google)
Davidson, Donald (1982). Rational animals. Dialectica 36:317-28.   (Cited by 85 | Google | More links)
Dawkins, Marian S. (1990). From an animal's point of view: Motivation, fitness, and animal welfare. Behavioral and Brain Sciences.   (Cited by 165 | Google)
Dawkins, Marian S. (1987). Minding and mattering. In Colin Blakemore & Susan A. Greenfield (eds.), Mindwaves. Blackwell.   (Cited by 6 | Google)
de Laguna, Grace A. (1919). Dualism and animal psychology: A rejoinder. Journal of Philosophy, Psychology and Scientific Methods 16 (11):296-300.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
de Laguna, Grace A. (1918). Dualism in animal psychology. Journal of Philosophy, Psychology and Scientific Methods 15 (23):617-627.   (Cited by 2 | Google | More links)
Dennett, Daniel C. (1989). Cognitive ethology. In Goals, No-Goals and Own Goals. Unwin Hyman.   (Cited by 15 | Google)
Abstract: The field of Artificial Intelligence has produced so many new concepts--or at least vivid and more structured versions of old concepts--that it would be surprising if none of them turned out to be of value to students of animal behavior. Which will be most valuable? I will resist the temptation to engage in either prophecy or salesmanship; instead of attempting to answer the question: "How might Artificial Intelligence inform the study of animal behavior?" I will concentrate on the obverse: "How might the study of animal behavior inform research in Artificial Intelligence?"
Dennett, Daniel C. (1995). Do animals have beliefs? In H. Roitblat & Jean-Arcady Meyer (eds.), Comparative Approaches to Cognitive Science. MIT Press.   (Cited by 9 | Google | More links)
Abstract: In Herbert Roitblat, ed., _Comparative Approaches to Cognitive Sciences_ , MIT Press, 1995. Daniel C. Dennett
Do Animals Have Beliefs?
According to one more or less standard mythology, behaviorism, the ideology and methodology that reigned in experimental psychology for most of the century, has been overthrown by a new ideology and methodology: cognitivism. Behaviorists, one is told, didn't take the mind seriously. They ignored--or even denied the existence of--mental states such as beliefs and desires, and mental processes such as imagination and reasoning; behaviorists concentrated exclusively on external, publicly observable behavior, and the (external, publicly observable) conditions under which such behavior was elicited. Cognitivists, in contrast, take the mind seriously, and develop theories, models, explanations, that invoke, as real items, these internal, mental, goings-on. People (and at least some other animals) have minds after all--they are
Dennett, Daniel C. (1983). Intentional systems in cognitive ethology: The 'panglossian paradigm' defended. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 6:343-90.   (Cited by 21 | Google)
Dreckmann, F. (1999). Animal beliefs and their contents. Erkenntnis 51 (1):597-615.   (Google | More links)
Abstract:   This paper investigates whether, or not, the behavior of animals without speech can manifest beliefs and desires. Criteria for the attribution of such beliefs and desires are worked out with reference to Jonathan Bennett's theory of cognitive teleology: A particular ability for learning justifies attributing such beliefs and desires. The conceptual analysis is illustrated by examinations of cognitive ethology and considers higher-order intentionality. It is argued that the behavioral evidence only supports the attribution of first order beliefs and that languageless animals therefore could not possess higher-order intentionality. They are only capable of forming simple, i.e., first-order beliefs about their environment
Fellows, Roger (2000). Animal belief. Philosophy 75 (294):587-599.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Non language-using animals cannot have beliefs, because believing entails the ability to distinguish true from false beliefs and also the ability to distinguish changes in belief from changes in the world. For these abilities we need both the fixation of belief and counter-factual thought, for both of which language is necessary. The argument of the paper extends Davidson's argument to the same conclusion (which is found wanting). But denying beliefs to animals has no moral implications
Floy Washburn, Margaret (1919). Dualism in animal psychology. Journal of Philosophy, Psychology and Scientific Methods 16 (2):41-44.   (Google | More links)
Gaita, Raimond (1992). Animal thoughts. Philosophical Investigations 15 (3):227-44.   (Google)
Gardner, R. Allen (2005). Animal cognition meets evo-devo. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 28 (5):699-700.   (Google)
Abstract: Sound comparative psychology and modern evolutionary and developmental biology (often called evo-devo) emphasize powerful effects of developmental conditions on the expression of genetic endowment. Both demand that evolutionary theorists recognize these effects. Instead, Tomasello et al. compares studies of normal human children with studies of chimpanzees reared and maintained in cognitively deprived conditions, while ignoring studies of chimpanzees in cognitively appropriate environments
Glock, H. J. (2000). Animals, thoughts and concepts. Synthese 123 (1):35-104.   (Cited by 8 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   There are three main positions on animalthought: lingualism denies that non-linguistic animalshave any thoughts; mentalism maintains that theirthoughts differ from ours only in degree, due totheir different perceptual inputs; an intermediateposition, occupied by common sense and Wittgenstein,maintains that animals can have thoughts of a simplekind. This paper argues in favor of an intermediateposition. It considers the most important arguments infavor of lingualism, namely those inspired byDavidson: the argument from the intensional nature ofthought (Section 1); the idea that thoughts involveconcepts (Sections 2–3); the argument from the holisticnature of thought (Section 4); and the claim that beliefrequires the concept of belief (Sections 5–6). The lastargument (which Davidson favors) is uncompelling, butthe first three shed valuable light on the extent towhich thought requires language. However, none of themprecludes animals from having simple thoughts. Even ifone adopts the kind of third-person perspective onthought Davidson shares with Wittgenstein, the resultis a version of the intermediate position, albeit oneenriched by Davidson''s insights concerningintensionality, concepts and holism (Section 7). We canonly ascribe simple thoughts to animals, and even thatascription is incongruous in that the rich idiom weemploy has conceptual connections that go beyond thephenomena to which it is applied
Godfrey-Smith, Peter (2003). Folk psychology under stress: Comments on Susan Hurley's Animal Action in the Space of Reasons. Mind and Language 18 (3):266-272.   (Google | More links)
Abstract:   My commentary on Hurley is concerned with foundational issues. Hurley's investigation of animal cognition is cast within a particular framework—basically, a philosophically refined version of folk psychology. Her discussion has a complicated relationship to unresolved debates about the nature and status of folk psychology, especially debates about the extent to which folk psychological categories are aimed at picking out features of the causal organization of the mind
Gould, J. L. & Gould, C. G. (1982). The insect mind: Physics or metaphysics? In Donald R. Griffin (ed.), Animal Mind -- Human Mind. Springer-Verlag.   (Cited by 10 | Google)
Griffin, Donald R. (ed.) (1982). Animal Mind -- Human Mind. Springer-Verlag.   (Cited by 17 | Google)
Griffin, Donald R. (1984). Animal Thinking. Harvard University Press.   (Cited by 112 | Google)
Harrison, P. (1991). Do animals feel pain? Philosophy 66 (January):25-40.   (Cited by 8 | Google)
Heil, John (1982). Speechless brutes. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 42 (March):400-406.   (Google | More links)
Hendrichs, H. (1999). Different roots of human intentionality in mammalian mentality. Erkenntnis 51 (1):649-668.   (Cited by 1 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   Five mental components of human intentionality are distinguished and related to different properties of mammalian orientation. It is proposed that, in the course of evolution, these old properties became integrated and thereby allowed for the development of a new quality: human orientation. The existence of more than 4,000 mammal species with their various forms and levels of mental organization, offering a panorama of different combinations of differently developed components of mentality, provide ample opportunities for comparative studies. The difficulties in assessing specific types are outlined, drawing on over 40 years of observation. Based on this knowledge, an argument is made for the importance of staying in contact with the empirical objects and of considering their ontological status when rising the standards of precision of formal analysis
Heyes, Cecilia M. (1987). Contrasting approaches to the legitimation of intentional language within comparative psychology. Behaviorism 15:41-50.   (Cited by 10 | Google)
Hilbert, David R. (1993). Comments on anthropomorphism. Philosophical Studies 69 (2-3):123-127.   (Google | More links)
Humphrey, Nick K. (1976). How monkeys acquire a new way of seeing. Perception 5 (1):51-6.   (Cited by 4 | Google | More links)
Abstract: Abstract. In an experiment on perceptual learning, monkeys were given the opportunity to watch on television the `private behaviour' of another monkey (which did not know it was being watched). The subjects were shown monkey X for twenty sessions in a row, followed by monkey Y for twenty sessions, followed by monkey X again for twenty sessions. The subjects' `interest' in the