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Profile: Derek Leben (University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown)
  1. Derek Leben (2015). Neoclassical Concepts. Mind and Language 30 (1):44-69.
    Linguistic theories of lexical semantics support a Neoclassical Theory of concepts, where entities like CAUSE, STATE, and MANNER serve as necessary conditions for the possession of individual event concepts. Not all concepts have a neoclassical structure, and whether or not words participate in regular linguistic patterns such as verbal alternations will be proposed as a probe for identifying whether their corresponding concepts do indeed have such structure. I show how the Neoclassical Theory supplements existing theories of concepts and supports a (...)
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  2. Derek Leben & Kristine Wilckens (2014). Pushing the Intuitions Behind Moral Internalism. Philosophical Psychology 28 (4):510-528.
    Moral Internalism proposes a necessary link between judging that an action is right/wrong and being motivated to perform/avoid that action. Internalism is central to many arguments within ethics, including the claim that moral judgments are not beliefs, and the claim that certain types of moral skepticism are incoherent. However, most of the basis for accepting Internalism rests on intuitions that have recently been called into question by empirical work. This paper further investigates the intuitions behind Internalism. Three experiments show not (...)
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  3. Derek Leben (2012). When Psychology Undermines Beliefs. Philosophical Psychology (3):1-23.
    This paper attempts to specify the conditions under which a psychological explanation can undermine or debunk a set of beliefs. The focus will be on moral and religious beliefs, where a growing debate has emerged about the epistemic implications of cognitive science. Recent proposals by Joshua Greene and Paul Bloom will be taken as paradigmatic attempts to undermine beliefs with psychology. I will argue that a belief p may be undermined whenever: (i) p is evidentially based on an intuition which (...)
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  4. Derek Leben (2011). Cognitive Neuroscience and Moral Decision-Making: Guide or Set Aside? Neuroethics 4 (2):163-174.
    It is by now a well-supported hypothesis in cognitive neuroscience that there exists a functional network for the moral appraisal of situations. However, there is a surprising disagreement amongst researchers about the significance of this network for moral actions, decisions, and behavior. Some researchers suggest that we should uncover those ethics [that are built into our brains ], identify them, and live more fully by them, while others claim that we should often do the opposite, viewing the cognitive neuroscience of (...)
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