David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Minds and Machines 1 (1):1-30 (1991)
I argue that there are no mental representations, in the sense of “representation” used in standard computational theories of the mind. I take Cummins' Meaning and Mental Representation as my stalking-horse, and argue that his view, once properly developed, is self-defeating. The argument implicitly undermines Fodor's view of the mind; I draw that conclusion out explicitly. The idea of mental representations can then only be saved by appeal to a Dennett-like instrumentalism; so I argue against that too. Finally, I argue that there is no good metaphysical reason in favour of believing in mental representations and that cognitive science can manage perfectly well without them
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