David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 5 (2):19-38 (2009)
Here I challenge the philosophical consensus that we use folk psychology for the purposes of metarepresentation. The paper intends to show that folk psychology should not be conceived on par with fact-stating discourses in spite of what its surface semantics may suggest. I argue that folk-psychological discourse is organised in a way and has conceptual characteristics such that it cannot fulfill a fact-stating function. To support this claim I develop an open question argument for psychological interpretations, and I draw attention to the central role of rationality, the conceptual connections, and the essential evaluative content inherent in folk psychological ascriptions. As a conclusion I propose that a fictionalist account of the discourse would fit its characteristics better than a factualist-realist interpretation.
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