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  1. D. A. Allport (1983). Language and Cognition. In Roy Harris (ed.), Approaches to Language. Pergamon 61--94.
  2. Andre Ariew (1997). Innateness: A Developmental Account. Dissertation, The University of Arizona
    Ascriptions of innateness are ubiquitous in the cognitive, behavioral and biological sciences. For example, some linguists think that humans possess an "innate" language aquisition device. Some ethologists think that a great number of animal behaviors are "innate". Implicit in these ascriptions is the belief that innateness is a well-understood biological phenomenon. The question I would like to address in this dissertation is, what makes a morphological, physiological or behavioral feature "innate"? ;According to some nay-sayers, innateness is not well-defined in biology (...)
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  3. Mark C. Baker (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
  4. William Bechtel & Adele Abrahamsen (2005). Mechanistic Explanation and the Nature-Nurture Controversy. Bulletin d'Histoire Et d'pistmologie Des Sciences de La Vie 12:75-100.
    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 (...)
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  5. Jacob Beck, Can Bootstrapping Explain Concept Learning?
    Susan Carey’s account of bootstrapping aims to explain how important new concepts are learned. After arguing that Carey’s own formulations of bootstrapping fail in this aim, I critically evaluate three reformulations of bootstrapping that may have a better chance at success.
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  6. Derek Bickerton (1997). Constructivism, Nativism, and Explanatory Adequacy. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 20 (4):557-558.
    Constructivism is the most recent in a long line of failed attempts to discredit nativism. It seeks support from true (but irrelevant) facts, wastes its energy on straw men, and jumps logical gaps; but its greatest weakness lies in its failure to match nativism's explanation of a wide range of disparate phenomena, particularly in language acquisition.
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  7. Robert Boyd & Peter Richerson (2006). Culture, Adaptation, and Innateness. In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind: Culture and Cognition.
    It is almost 30 years since the sociobiology controversy burst into full bloom. The modern theory of the evolution of animal behavior was born in the mid 1960’s with Bill Hamilton’s seminal papers on inclusive fitness and George William’s book Adaptation and Natural Selection. The following decade saw an avalanche of important ideas on the evolution of sex ratio, animal conflicts, parental investment, and reciprocity, setting off a revolution our understanding of animal societies, a revolution that is still going on (...)
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  8. M. J. Cain (2006). Concept Nativism and the Rule Following Considerations. Acta Analytica 21 (38):77-101.
    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 (...)
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  9. Peter Carruthers (ed.) (2005). The Innate Mind: Structure and Contents. New York: Oxford University Press New York.
    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 (...)
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  10. Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen Stich (eds.) (2007). Innate Mind: Volume 2: Culture and Cognition. OUP Usa.
    This is the second volume of a three volume series on innateness - one of the central questions currently debated in the cognitive and behavioural sciences.
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  11. Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.) (2006). The Innate Mind, Volume 2: Culture and Cognition. Oxford University Press.
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  12. Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.) (2005). The Innate Mind. Oxford University Press.
    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 (...)
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  13. Wen-Chi Chiang (2008). What is Still Needed? On Nativist Proposals for Acquiring Concepts of Natural Numbers. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 31 (6):646-647.
    Rips et al.'s analyses have boosted the plausibility of proposals that the human mind embodies some critical properties of natural numbers. I suggest that such proposals can be further evaluated by infant studies, neuropsychological data, and evolution-based considerations, and additionally, that Rips et al.'s model may need to be modified in order to more completely reflect infants' quantitative abilities.
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  14. Noam A. Chomsky (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
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  15. Noam A. Chomsky (1976). Reflections On Language. Temple Smith.
  16. Noam A. Chomsky (1975). On Cognitive Capacity. In Reflections on Language. Pantheon Books
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  17. Noam A. Chomsky (1969). Linguistics and Philosophy. In Sidney Hook (ed.), Language and Philosophy. New York University Press
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  18. Noam A. Chomsky (1967). Recent Contributions to the Theory of Innate Ideas. Synthese 17 (March):2-11.
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  19. Noam A. Chomsky & Jerry A. Fodor (1980). The Inductivist Fallacy. In Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini (ed.), Language and Learning: The Debate Between Jean Piaget and Noam Chomsky. Harvard University Press
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  20. Noam A. Chomsky & Jerrold J. Katz (1975). On Innateness: A Reply to Cooper. Philosophical Review 84 (January):70-87.
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  21. Patricia S. Churchland (1978). Fodor on Language Learning. Synthese 38 (May):149-59.
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  22. Andy Clark (1993). Minimal Rationalism. Mind 102 (408):587-610.
    Enquiries into the possible nature and scope of innate knowledge never proceed in an empirical vaccuum. Instead, such conjectures are informed by a theory (perhaps only tacitly endorsed) concerning probable representational form. Classical approaches to the nativism debate often assume a quasi-linguistic form of knowledge representation and deliniate a space of options (concerning the nature and extent of innate knowledge) accordingly. Recent connectionist theorizing posits a different kind of represenational form, and thus determines a different picture of the space of (...)
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  23. John M. Collins (2006). Proxytypes and Linguistic Nativism. Synthese 153 (1):69-104.
    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 (...)
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  24. John M. Collins (2005). Nativism: In Defense of a Biological Understanding. Philosophical Psychology 18 (2):157-177.
    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 (...)
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  25. John M. Collins (2003). Cowie on the Poverty of Stimulus. Synthese 136 (2):159-190.
    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 (...)
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  26. Fiona Cowie (forthcoming). Innateness and Language. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
  27. Fiona Cowie (2003). Innateness, Philosophical Issues About. In L. Nadel (ed.), Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science. Nature Publishing Group
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  28. Fiona Cowie (2001). On Cussing in Church: In Defense of What's Within? Mind and Language 16 (2):231-245.
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  29. Fiona Cowie (1999). What's Within? Nativism Reconsidered. Oxford University Press.
    This powerfully iconoclastic book reconsiders the influential nativist position toward the mind.
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  30. Fiona Cowie (1998). Mad Dog Nativism. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 49 (2):227-252.
    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 (...)
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  31. Fiona Cowie (1998). What's Within? Oxford University Press.
    This powerfully iconoclastic book reconsiders the influential nativist position toward the mind.
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  32. Stephen Crain & Paul Pietroski (2003). Innateness and Universal Grammar. In L. Nadel (ed.), Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science. Nature Publishing Group
  33. Michael Cuffaro (2008). Nativist Models of the Mind. Gnosis 9 (3):1-22.
    I give a defense of the Massive Modularity hypothesis: the view that the mind is composed of discrete, encapsulated, informationally isolated computational structures dedicated to particular problem domains. This view contrasts with Psychological Rationalism: the view that mental structures take the form of unencapsulated representational items, all available as inputs to one domain-general computational processor. I argue that although Psychological Rationalism is in principle able to overcome the `intractability objection', the view must borrow many features of a massively modular architecture (...)
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  34. Denise D. Cummins (1996). Evidence for the Innateness of Deontic Reasoning. Mind and Language 11 (2):160-90.
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  35. Denise D. Cummins, Robert C. Cummins & Pierre Poirier (2003). Cognitive Evolutionary Psychology Without Representational Nativism. Journal of Experimental and Theoretical Artificial Intelligence 15 (2):143-159.
    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 (...)
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  36. Helen de Cruz & Johan de Smedt (2010). Paley's Ipod: The Cognitive Basis of the Design Argument Within Natural Theology. Zygon 45 (3):665-684.
    The argument from design stands as one of the most intuitively compelling arguments for the existence of a divine Creator. Yet, for many scientists and philosophers, Hume's critique and Darwin's theory of natural selection have definitely undermined the idea that we can draw any analogy from design in artifacts to design in nature. Here, we examine empirical studies from developmental and experimental psychology to investigate the cognitive basis of the design argument. From this it becomes clear that humans spontaneously discern (...)
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  37. Raffaella de Rosa (2004). Locke's Essay Book I: The Question-Begging Status of the Anti-Nativist Arguments. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 69 (1):37-64.
    In this paper I argue against the received view that the anti-nativist arguments of Book I of Locke’s Essay conclusively challenge nativism. I begin by reconstructing the chief argument of Book I and its corollary arguments. I call attention to their dependence on (what I label) “the Awareness Principle”, viz., the view that there are no ideas in the mind of which the mind either isn’t currently aware or hasn’t been aware in the past. I then argue that the arguments’ (...)
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  38. Raffaella de Rosa (2000). On Fodor's Claim That Classical Empiricists and Rationalists Agree on the Innateness of Ideas. ProtoSociology 14:240-269.
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  39. Susan Dwyer (2006). How Good is the Linguistic Analogy? In Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence & Stephen P. Stich (eds.), The Innate Mind, Vol. 2: Culture and Cognition. Oxford University Press
    A nativist moral psychology, modeled on the successes of theoretical linguistics, provides the best framework for explaining the acquisition of moral capacities and the diversity of moral judgment across the species. After a brief presentation of a poverty of the moral stimulus argument, this chapter sketches a view according to which a so-called Universal Moral Grammar provides a set of parameterizable principles whose specific values are set by the child's environment, resulting in the acquisition of a moral idiolect. The principles (...)
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  40. Lorne Falkenstein (2004). Nativism and the Nature of Thought in Reid's Account of Our Knowledge of the External World. In Terence Cuneo & René van Woudenberg (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to Thomas Reid. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 156--179.
  41. Lorne Falkenstein (2004). Nativism and the Nature of Thought in Reid's Account of Our Knowledge of the External World. In Terence Cuneo Rene van Woudenberg (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Thomas Reid. Cambridge University Press 156--179.
  42. Simon Fitzpatrick (forthcoming). Nativism, Empiricism, and Ockham’s Razor. Erkenntnis:1-28.
    This paper discusses the role that appeals to theoretical simplicity (or parsimony) have played in the debate between nativists and empiricists in cognitive science. Both sides have been keen to make use of such appeals in defence of their respective positions about the structure and ontogeny of the human mind. Focusing on the standard simplicity argument employed by empiricist-minded philosophers and cognitive scientists—what I call “the argument for minimal innateness”—I identify various problems with such arguments—in particular, the apparent arbitrariness of (...)
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  43. J. Fodor (2001). Doing Without What's Within: Fiona Cowie's Critique of Nativism. [REVIEW] Mind 110 (437):99-148.
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  44. Jerry A. Fodor (1981). Representations: Philosophical Essays on the Foundations of Cognitive Science. MIT Press.
  45. Jerry A. Fodor (1981). The Present Status of the Innateness Controversy. In Jerry Fodor (ed.), Representations. MIT Press
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  46. Jerry A. Fodor (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
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  47. Peter Godfrey-Smith, Innateness and Genetic Information.
    The idea that innateness can be understood in terms of genetic coding or genetic programming is discussed. I argue that biology does not provide any support for the view that the whole-organism features of interest to nativists in psychology and linguistics are genetically coded for. This provides some support for recent critical and deflationary treatments of the concept of innateness.
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  48. Alison Gopnik (2003). The Theory Theory as an Alternative to the Innateness Hypothesis. In Louise M. Antony (ed.), Chomsky and His Critics. Blackwell 238--254.
  49. Paul Griffiths (2002). What is Innateness? The Monist 85 (1):70-85.
    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', (...)
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  50. Paul E. Griffiths & Edouard Machery (2008). Innateness, Canalization, and 'Biologicizing the Mind'. Philosophical Psychology 21 (3):397 – 414.
    This article examines and rejects the claim that 'innateness is canalization'. Waddington's concept of canalization is distinguished from the narrower concept of environmental canalization with which it is often confused. Evidence is presented that the concept of environmental canalization is not an accurate analysis of the existing concept of innateness. The strategy of 'biologicizing the mind' by treating psychological or behavioral traits as if they were environmentally canalized physiological traits is criticized using data from developmental psychobiology. It is concluded that (...)
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