David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Noûs 41 (4):561-593 (2007)
What is a concept? Philosophers have given many different answers to this question, reflecting a wide variety of approaches to the study of mind and language. Nonetheless, at the most general level, there are two dominant frameworks in contemporary philosophy. One proposes that concepts are mental representations, while the other proposes that they are abstract objects. This paper looks at the differences between these two approaches, the prospects for combining them, and the issues that are involved in the dispute. We argue that powerful motivations have been offered in support of both frameworks. This suggests the possibility of combining the two. Unlike Frege, we hold that the resulting position is perfectly coherent and well worth considering. Nonetheless, we argue that it should be rejected along with the view that concepts are abstract objects
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|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
Murat Aydede (1998). Fodor on Concepts and Frege Puzzles. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 79 (4):289-294.
Simon Blackburn (1984). Spreading the Word. Clarendon Press.
Dorothy L. Cheney & Robert M. Seyfarth (1990). How Monkeys See the World: Inside the Mind of Another Species. University of Chicago Press.
Wayne A. Davis (2003). Meaning, Expression, and Thought. Cambridge University Press.
Wayne A. Davis (2005). Nondescriptive Meaning and Reference: An Ideational Semantics. Oxford University Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Helen De Cruz & Johan De Smedt (2013). Mathematical Symbols as Epistemic Actions. Synthese 190 (1):3-19.
Eric Margolis & Stephen Laurence (2011). Learning Matters: The Role of Learning in Concept Acquisition. Mind and Language 26 (5):507-539.
Nicoletta Orlandi (2011). Ambiguous Figures and Representationalism. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 10 (3):307-323.
Jacob Beck (2012). Do Animals Engage in Conceptual Thought? Philosophy Compass 7 (3):218-229.
Samuel Newlands (2010). Another Kind of Spinozistic Monism. Noûs 44 (3):469-502.
Similar books and articles
Dan Ryder (2009). Problems of Representation II: Naturalizing Content. In Francisco Garzon & John Symons (eds.), Routledge Companion to the Philosophy of Psychology. Routledge.
Daniel A. Kaufman (2002). Composite Objects and the Abstract/Concrete Distinction. Journal of Philosophical Research 27:215-238.
Thomas Hofweber (2000). Quantification and Non-Existent Objects. In T. Hofweber & A. Everett (eds.), Empty Names, Fiction, and the Puzzles of Non-Existence. Csli Publications.
David Scott (2010). Resemblance as a Principle of Representation in Descartes' Philosophy. American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 84 (3):483-512.
Stephen Laurence & Eric Margolis (1999). Concepts and Cognitive Science. In Eric Margolis & Stephen Laurence (eds.), Concepts: Core Readings. MIT. 3--81.
John Sutton (2004). Are Concepts Mental Representations or Abstracta? Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (1):89-108.
Peter Slezak (1995). The “Philosophical” Case Against Visual Images. In P. Slezak, T. Caelli & R. Clark (eds.), Perspectives on Cognitive Science, Volume 1: Theories, Experiments, and Foundations. Ablex Publishing.
Natika Newton (2001). The Role of Action Representations in the Dynamics of Embodied Cognition. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (1):58-59.
Eric Margolis & Stephen Laurence, Concepts. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Susan V. Castagnetto (1992). Reid's Answer to Abstract Ideas. Journal of Philosophical Research 17:39-60.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads171 ( #4,522 of 1,102,110 )
Recent downloads (6 months)21 ( #9,905 of 1,102,110 )
How can I increase my downloads?