A look at the inference engine underlying ‘evolutionary epistemology’ accounts of the production of heuristics
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
In Dirk Evers, Antje Jackelén, Michael Fuller & Taede A. Smedes (eds.), Is Religion Natural? Studies in Science and Theology, No. 13. ESSSAT Biennial Yearbook 2011-2012. Martin-Luther-Universität (2012)
This paper evaluates the claim that it is possible to use nature’s variation in conjunction with retention and selection on the one hand, and the absence of ultimate groundedness of hypotheses generated by the human mind as it knows on the other hand, to discard the ascription of ultimate certainty to the rationality of human conjectures in the cognitive realm. This leads to an evaluation of the further assumption that successful hypotheses with specific applications, in other words heuristics, seem to have a firm footing because they were useful in another context. I argue that usefulness evaluated through adaptation misconstrues the search for truth, and that it is possible to generate talk of randomness by neglecting aspects of a system’s insertion into a larger situation. The framing of the problem in terms of the elimination of unfit hypotheses is found to be unsatisfying. It is suggested that theories exist in a dimension where they can be kept alive rather than dying as phenotypes do. The proposal that the subconscious could suggest random variations is found to be a category mistake. A final appeal to phenomenology shows that this proposal is orphan in the history of epistemology, not in virtue of its being a remarkable find, but rather because it is ill-conceived.
|Keywords||evolutionary epistemology heuristics context of discovery hypotheses chaos information Edward Stein Peter Lipton genetics variations|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Edward Stein & Peter Lipton (1989). Where Guesses Come From: Evolutionary Epistemology and the Anomaly of Guided Variation. Biology and Philosophy 4 (1):33-56.
Edouard Machery (web). Discovery and Confirmation in Evolutionary Psychology. In Jesse J. Prinz (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Psychology. Oxford University Press.
Timothy R. Colburn (1995). Heuristics, Justification, and Defeasible Reasoning. Minds and Machines 5 (4):467-487.
Alexander S. Harper (2012). An Oblique Epistemic Defence of Conceptual Analysis. Metaphilosophy 43 (3):235-256.
Michael Bradie (1986). Assessing Evolutionary Epistemology. Biology and Philosophy 1 (4):401-459.
Thomas Sturm (2008). What Is the Foundation of Norms of Rationality? In Ansgar Beckermann, Holm Tetens & Sven Walter (eds.), Philosophie: Grundlagen und Anwendungen/Philosophy: Foundations and Applications. Mentis.
Robert Rosenwein & Michael Gorman (1995). Heuristics, Hypotheses, and Social Influence: A New Approach to the Experimental Simulation of Social Epistemology. Social Epistemology 9 (1):57 – 69.
Michael E. Gorman (2000). Heuristics in Technoscientific Thinking. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 23 (5):752-752.
Gloria Origgi (2012). A Social Epistemology of Reputation. Social Epistemology 26 (3-4):399-418.
Christoph Engel (2000). Psychological Research on Heuristics Meets the Law. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 23 (5):747-747.
Scott A. Kleiner (1988). The Logic of Discovery and Darwin's Pre-Malthusian Researches. Biology and Philosophy 3 (3):293-315.
Gerd Gigerenzer & Thomas Sturm (2012). How (Far) Can Rationality Be Naturalized? Synthese 187 (1):243-268.
Somogy Varga (2012). Evolutionary Psychiatry and Depression: Testing Two Hypotheses. [REVIEW] Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 15 (1):41-52.
Wolfgang Friedrich Gutmann & Michael Weingarten (1990). Die Biotheoretischen Mängel der Evolutionären Erkenntnistheorie. Journal for General Philosophy of Science 21 (2):309 - 328.
Added to index2011-04-11
Total downloads47 ( #38,323 of 1,101,983 )
Recent downloads (6 months)6 ( #52,490 of 1,101,983 )
How can I increase my downloads?