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  1. Fiona Cowie (forthcoming). Innateness and Language. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  2. Fiona Cowie (2010). By the Waters of Babel: Jean-Louis Dessalles' Why We Talk. Biology and Philosophy 25 (5):880-888.
    Why We Talk is a complex, ambitious, original, thought-provoking, and sometimes frustrating book. In it, Jean-Louis Dessalles argues that the critical spur to the development of human language—language’s true biological function—was political. It wasn’t political in any of the senses hitherto floated in the literature, though: language didn’t evolve because it fostered group cohesion or cooperation, or facilitated mind-reading or manipulation. Instead, language originally served more or less the same function as ritualized displays of aggression and submission in many social (...)
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  3. Jean-Louis Dessalles, Edouard Machery, Fiona Cowie & Jason Mckenzie Alexander (2010). Symposium on J.-L. Dessalles's Why We Talk. Biology and Philosophy 25 (5).
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  4. Edouard Machery, Jean-Louis Dessalles, Fiona Cowie & Jason Alexander (2010). Symposium on J.-L. Dessalles's Why We Talk (OUP, 2007): Precis by J.-L. Dessalles, Commentaries by E. Machery, F. Cowie, and J. Alexander, Replies by J.-L. Dessalles. [REVIEW] Biology and Philosophy 25 (5):851-901.
    This symposium discusses J.-L. Dessalles's account of the evolution of language, which was presented in Why we Talk (OUP 2007).
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  5. Fiona Cowie (2009). Why Isn't Stich an Eliminativist? In Dominic Murphy & Michael A. Bishop (eds.), Stich and His Critics. Wiley-Blackwell. 14--74.
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  6. Fiona Cowie (2008). Us, Them and It: Modules, Genes, Environments and Evolution. Mind and Language 23 (3):284–292.
    The Architecture of Mind is an ambitious and informative work, surveying an impressive range of empirical literature and arguing that the mind is massively modular. However, it suffers from two major theoretical flaws. First, Carruthers’ concept of a module is weak, so much so that it robs his thesis of massive modularity of any real substance. Second, his conception of how the mind’s modules evolved ignores the role of niche construction and cultural evolution to its detriment.
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  7. James F. Woodward & Fiona Cowie (2004). The Mind is Not (Just) a System of Modules Shaped (Just) by Natural Selection. In Christopher Hitchcock (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Philosophy of Science. Malden MA: Blackwell Publishing. 312-34.
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  8. Fiona Cowie (2003). Hurford's Partial Vindication of Classical Empiricism. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 26 (3):289-290.
    Hurford's discussion also vindicates the classical empiricist program in semantics. The idea that PREDICATE(x) is the logical form of the sensory representations encoded via the dorsal and ventral streams validates empiricists' insistence on the psychological primacy of sense data, which have the same form. In addition to knowing the logical form of our primitive representations, however, we need accounts of (1) their contents and (2) how more complex thoughts are derived from them. Ideally, our semantic vocabulary would both reflect the (...)
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  9. Fiona Cowie (2003). Innateness, Philosophical Issues About. In L. Nadel (ed.), Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science. Nature Publishing Group.
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  10. Fiona Cowie (2001). On Cussing in Church: In Defense of What's Within? Mind and Language 16 (2):231-245.
  11. Fiona Cowie (1999). What's Within? Nativism Reconsidered. Oxford University Press.
    This powerfully iconoclastic book reconsiders the influential nativist position toward the mind.
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  12. Fiona Cowie (1998). Mad Dog Nativism. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 49 (2):227-252.
    In his recent book, Concepts: Where Cognitive Science Went Wrong, Jerry Fodor retracts the radical concept-nativism he once defended. Yet that postion stood, virtually unchallenged, for more than twenty years. This neglect is puzzling, as Fodor's arguments against concepts being learnable from experience remain unanswered, and nativism has historically been taken very seriously as a response to empiricism's perceived shortcomings. In this paper, I urge that Fodorean nativism should indeed be rejected. I argue, however, that its deficiencies are not so (...)
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  13. Fiona Cowie (1998). What's Within? Oxford University Press.
    This powerfully iconoclastic book reconsiders the influential nativist position toward the mind.
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  14. Fiona Cowie (1997). The Logical Problem of Language Acquisition. Synthese 111 (1):17-51.
    Arguments from the Logical Problem of Language Acquisition suggest that since linguistic experience provides few negative data that would falsify overgeneral grammatical hypotheses, innate knowledge of the principles of Universal Grammar must constrain learners hypothesis formulation. Although this argument indicates a need for domain-specific constraints, it does not support their innateness. Learning from mostly positive data proceeds unproblematically in virtually all domains. Since not every domain can plausibly be accorded its own special faculty, the probative value of the argument in (...)
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  15. Fiona Cowie (1996). Human Knowledge and Human Nature. Philosophical Review 105 (4):530-533.
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