David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Cognition 74 (149):175 (2000)
Recent work on children’s inferences concerning biological and chemical categories has suggested that children (and perhaps adults) are essentialists— a view known as psychological essentialism. I distinguish three varieties of psychological essentialism and investigate the ways in which essentialism explains the inferences for which it is supposed to account. Essentialism succeeds in explaining the inferences, I argue, because it attributes to the child belief in causal laws connecting category membership and the possession of certain characteristic appearances and behavior. This suggests that the data will be equally well explained by a non-essentialist hypothesis that attributes belief in the appropriate causal laws to the child, but makes no claim as to whether or not the child represents essences. I provide several reasons to think that this non-essentialist hypothesis is in fact superior to any version of the essentialist hypothesis
|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
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Michael Strevens (2012). Theoretical Terms Without Analytic Truths. Philosophical Studies 160 (1):167-190.
Paul Griffiths, Edouard Machery & Stefan Linquist (2009). The Vernacular Concept of Innateness. Mind and Language 24 (5):605-630.
Jussi Jylkkä (2008). Theories of Natural Kind Term Reference and Empirical Psychology. Philosophical Studies 139 (2):153-169.
Ron Mallon (2010). Sources of Racialism. Journal of Social Philosophy 41 (3):272-292.
Muhammad Ali Khalidi (2007). Innate Cognitive Capacities. Mind and Language 22 (1):92-115.
Similar books and articles
Meredith Meyer, Sarah-Jane Leslie, Susan Gelman & Sarah Stilwell (2013). Essentialist Beliefs About Bodily Transplants in the United States and India. Cognitive Science 37 (1):668-710.
Uma Narayan (1998). Essence of Culture and a Sense of History: A Feminist Critique of Cultural Essentialism. Hypatia 13 (2):86 - 106.
Michael Della Rocca (2002). Essentialism Vs. Essentialism. In Tamar Gendler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Conceivability and Possibility. Oxford University Press. 223--252.
H. Clark Barrett (2001). On the Functional Origins of Essentialism. [Journal (Paginated)] (in Press) 2 (1):1-30.
W. Russ Payne, Some Good and Some Not so Good Arguments for Necessary Laws William Russell Payne Ph.D.
Alexander Bird (2005). Laws and Essences. Ratio 18 (4):437–461.
Matthew Tugby (2012). Rescuing Dispositionalism From the Ultimate Problem: Reply to Barker and Smart. Analysis 72 (4):723-731.
Ping Xu (1995). Irigaray's Mimicry and the Problem of Essentialism. Hypatia 10 (4):76 - 89.
Cressida J. Heyes (1997). Anti‐Essentialism in Practice: Carol Gilligan and Feminist Philosophy. Hypatia 12 (3):142-163.
Mary P. Winsor (2003). Non-Essentialist Methods in Pre-Darwinian Taxonomy. Biology and Philosophy 18 (3):387-400.
Gyula Klima (2005). The Essentialist Nominalism of John Buridan. Review of Metaphysics 58 (4):739 - 754.
Maja Malec (2009). Essentialism Contextualized. Croatian Journal of Philosophy 9 (2):201-217.
Added to index2011-05-22
Total downloads24 ( #75,618 of 1,099,863 )
Recent downloads (6 months)10 ( #24,042 of 1,099,863 )
How can I increase my downloads?