Download In Critical Condition: Polemical Essays on Cognitive Science by Jerry A. Fodor PDF

By Jerry A. Fodor

In this ebook Jerry Fodor contrasts his perspectives concerning the brain with these of a few recognized philosophers and cognitive scientists, together with John McDowell, Christopher Peacocke, Paul Churchland, Daniel Dennett, Paul Smolensky, and Richard Dawkins. a number of of those essays are released right here for the 1st time. the remaining originated as publication reports within the Times Literary Supplement, the London assessment of Books, or in journals of philosophy or psychology. the themes tested comprise cognitive structure, the character of options, and the prestige of Darwinism in psychology. Fodor constructs a model of the Representational thought of brain that blends Intentional Realism, Computational Reductionism, Nativism, and Semantic Atomism.

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Additional resources for In Critical Condition: Polemical Essays on Cognitive Science and the Philosophy of Mind

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Supposea primitive concept has a PQssessioncondition that is not inherited by one of its complex hosts; suppose, for example, that being able to recognize good instancesof pets is apos sessioncondition for PET but is not a possessioncondition for PET FISH. Then presumably it is possible that someonewho has the concept PET FISH should nonethelessnot have the concept PET. I take this to be a reductio, and I think that you should too. 7 If so, ' that s all the more reasonfor you to hold that the possessionconditions for RED APPLE must includethe possessionconditions for RED.

What about absolutely primitive concepts like RED? Surely the concept RED is recognitional even if neither FISH nor PET FISH is. A4: It ' s just more of the same. Consider RED HAIR , which, I will suppose , is compositional (that is, not idiomatic) and appliesto hair that is red as hair goes. This view of its semanticsexplains why , though red hair is arguably not literally red, still somebodywho has RED and has HAIR and who understandsthe semanticimplications of the syntactic structure AN , can figure out what " red hair" means.

So denying P leavesit open that one could have the concept RED APPLEand not have the concept RED. But, now, the usual compositional accountof productivity requiresthat one satisfy the possessionconditions for complex concepts, like RED APPLE, by satisfying the possessionconditions for their constituent concepts . That is, it requiresthat one' s having a grasp of the concept RED is ' part of the explanationof one s having a grasp of the concept RED APPLE. So accepting the usual compositional account of productivity is incompatible with denying premiseP.

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