David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Mind and Language 14 (1):131-153 (1999)
Psychologists and philosophers have recently been exploring whether the mechanisms which underlie the acquisition of ‘theory of mind’ (ToM) are best charac- terized as cognitive modules or as developing theories. In this paper, we attempt to clarify what a modular account of ToM entails, and why it is an attractive type of explanation. Intuitions and arguments in this debate often turn on the role of develop- ment: traditional research on ToM focuses on various developmental sequences, whereas cognitive modules are thought to be static and ‘anti-developmental’. We suggest that this mistaken view relies on an overly limited notion of modularity, and we explore how ToM might be grounded in a cognitive module and yet still afford development. Modules must ‘come on-line’, and even fully developed modules may still develop internally, based on their constrained input. We make these points con- crete by focusing on a recent proposal to capture the development of ToM in a module via parameterization.
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Citations of this work BETA
Alan M. Leslie, Ori Friedman & Tim P. German (2004). Core Mechanisms in ‘Theory of Mind’. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 8 (12):528-533.
Jennifer Nagel (2013). Defending the Evidential Value of Epistemic Intuitions: A Reply to Stich. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 86 (1):179-199.
Joshua Knobe & Jesse J. Prinz (2008). Intuitions About Consciousness: Experimental Studies. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 7 (1):67-83.
Joshua Knobe & Richard Samuels (2013). Thinking Like a Scientist: Innateness as a Case Study. Cognition 126 (1):72-86.
Shaun Gallagher & Somogy Varga (2014). Social Constraints on the Direct Perception of Emotions and Intentions. Topoi 33 (1):185-199.
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