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  1. Robert C. Berwick, Paul Pietroski, Beracah Yankama & Noam Chomsky (2011). Poverty of the Stimulus Revisited. Cognitive Science 35 (7):1207-1242.
    A central goal of modern generative grammar has been to discover invariant properties of human languages that reflect “the innate schematism of mind that is applied to the data of experience” and that “might reasonably be attributed to the organism itself as its contribution to the task of the acquisition of knowledge” (Chomsky, 1971). Candidates for such invariances include the structure dependence of grammatical rules, and in particular, certain constraints on question formation. Various “poverty of stimulus” (POS) arguments suggest that (...)
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  2. Johan De Smedt (2009). Cognitive Modularity in the Light of the Language Faculty. Logique et Analyse 208:373-387.
    Ever since Chomsky, language has become the paradigmatic example of an innate capacity. Infants of only a few months old are aware of the phonetic structure of their mother tongue, such as stress-patterns and phonemes. They can already discriminate words from non-words and acquire a feel for the grammatical structure months before they voice their first word. Language reliably develops not only in the face of poor linguistic input, but even without it. In recent years, several scholars have extended this (...)
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  3. J. Johnson, M. L. Juge & J. L. Moxley (eds.) (1996). Proceedings of the 22nd Annual Meeting: General Session and Parasession on the Role of Learnability in Grammatical Theory. Berkeley, California: Berkeley Linguistics Society.
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  4. Muhammad Ali Khalidi (2009). Should We Eliminate the Innate? Reply to Griffiths and Machery. Philosophical Psychology 22 (4):505 – 519.
    Griffiths and Machery (2008) have argued that innateness is a folk notion that obstructs inquiry and has no place in contemporary science. They support their view by criticizing the canalization account of innateness (Ariew, 1999, 2006). In response, I argue that the criticisms they raise for the canalization account can be avoided by another recent account of innateness, the triggering account, which provides an analysis of the concept as it applies to cognitive capacities (Khalidi, 2002, 2007; Stich, 1975). I also (...)
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  5. Muhammad Ali Khalidi (2007). Innate Cognitive Capacities. Mind and Language 22 (1):92-115.
    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 (...)
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  6. Muhammad Ali Khalidi (2002). Nature and Nurture in Cognition. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 53 (2):251-272.
    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 (...)
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  7. Stephen Laurence & Eric Margolis (2001). The Poverty of the Stimulus Argument. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 52 (2):217-276.
    Noam Chomsky's Poverty of the Stimulus Argument is one of the most famous and controversial arguments in the study of language and the mind. Though widely endorsed by linguists, the argument has met with much resistance in philosophy. Unfortunately, philosophical critics have often failed to fully appreciate the power of the argument. In this paper, we provide a systematic presentation of the Poverty of the Stimulus Argument, clarifying its structure, content, and evidential base. We defend the argument against a variety (...)
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  8. Joel W. Lidz & S. Waxman (2004). Reaffirming the Poverty of the Stimulus Argument: A Reply to the Replies. Cognition 93 (2):157-165.
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  9. Geoffrey K. Pullum (1996). Learnability, Hyperlearning, and the Poverty of the Stimulus. In J. Johnson, M. L. Juge & J. L. Moxley (eds.), Proceedings of the 22nd Annual Meeting: General Session and Parasession on the Role of Learnability in Grammatical Theory. Berkeley, California: Berkeley Linguistics Society. 498-513.
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