Search results for 'Mechanism' (try it on Scholar)

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  1. Daniel J. Nicholson (2012). The Concept of Mechanism in Biology. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 43 (1):152-163.
    The concept of mechanism in biology has three distinct meanings. It may refer to a philosophical thesis about the nature of life and biology (‘mechanicism’), to the internal workings of a machine-like structure (‘machine mechanism’), or to the causal explanation of a particular phenomenon (‘causal mechanism’). In this paper I trace the conceptual evolution of ‘mechanism’ in the history of biology, and I examine how the three meanings of this term have come to be featured in (...)
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  2.  21
    Gary Hatfield (2016). The Collapse of Mechanism and the Rise of Sensibility: Science and the Shaping of Modernity, 1680–1760. [REVIEW] British Journal for the History of Philosophy 24 (1):181-185.
    Review of: Stephen Gaukroger: The Collapse of Mechanism and the Rise of Sensibility: Science and the Shaping of Modernity, 1680-1760. Oxford: Clarendon, 2010, pp. ix+505. £47.00 (hb). ISBN 9780199594931. This volume is the second of a projected six-volume work on the shaping of modern cognitive values through the emergence of a scientific culture, a phenomenon that Gaukroger takes to be specific to the West. The volume ranges from Newton’s initial publications on optics to the French Enlightenment and the publication (...)
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  3.  47
    Simon Friederich, Robert Harlander & Koray Karaca (2014). Philosophical Perspectives on Ad Hoc Hypotheses and the Higgs Mechanism. Synthese 191 (16):3897-3917.
    We examine physicists’ charge of ad hocness against the Higgs mechanism in the standard model of elementary particle physics. We argue that even though this charge never rested on a clear-cut and well-entrenched definition of “ad hoc”, it is based on conceptual and methodological assumptions and principles that are well-founded elements of the scientific practice of high-energy particle physics. We further evaluate the implications of the recent discovery of a Higgs-like particle at the CERN’s Large Hadron Collider for the (...)
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  4. Gualtiero Piccinini & Carl Craver (2011). Integrating Psychology and Neuroscience: Functional Analyses as Mechanism Sketches. Synthese 183 (3):283-311.
    We sketch a framework for building a unified science of cognition. This unification is achieved by showing how functional analyses of cognitive capacities can be integrated with the multilevel mechanistic explanations of neural systems. The core idea is that functional analyses are sketches of mechanisms , in which some structural aspects of a mechanistic explanation are omitted. Once the missing aspects are filled in, a functional analysis turns into a full-blown mechanistic explanation. By this process, functional (...)
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  5.  14
    Lane DesAutels (2015). Toward a Propensity Interpretation of Stochastic Mechanism for the Life Sciences. Synthese 192 (9):2921-2953.
    In what follows, I suggest that it makes good sense to think of the truth of the probabilistic generalizations made in the life sciences as metaphysically grounded in stochastic mechanisms in the world. To further understand these stochastic mechanisms, I take the general characterization of mechanism offered by MDC :1–25, 2000) and explore how it fits with several of the going philosophical accounts of chance: subjectivism, frequentism, Lewisian best-systems, and propensity. I argue that neither subjectivism, frequentism, nor (...)
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  6.  84
    Alexander Mebius (2014). A Weakened Mechanism Is Still A Mechanism: On the Causal Role of Absences in Mechanistic Explanation. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 45 (1):43-48.
    Much contemporary debate on the nature of mechanisms centers on the issue of modulating negative causes. One type of negative causability, which I refer to as “causation by absence,” appears difficult to incorporate into modern accounts of mechanistic explanation. This paper argues that a recent attempt to resolve this problem, proposed by Benjamin Barros, requires improvement as it overlooks the fact that not all absences qualify as sources of mechanism failure. I suggest that there are a number of (...)
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  7.  57
    Joyce C. Havstad (2011). Problems for Natural Selection as a Mechanism. Philosophy of Science 78 (3):512-523.
    Skipper and Millstein analyze natural selection and mechanism, concluding that natural selection is not a mechanism in the sense of the new mechanistic philosophy. Barros disagrees and provides his own account of natural selection as a mechanism. This discussion identifies a missing piece of Barros's account, attempts to fill in that piece, and reconsiders the revised account. Two principal objections are developed: one, the account does not characterize natural selection; two, the account is not mechanistic. Extensive and (...)
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  8. Jeffrey S. Poland & Barbara Von Eckardt (2004). Mechanism and Explanation in Cognitive Neuroscience. Philosophy of Science 71 (5):972-984.
    The aim of this paper is to examine the usefulness of the Machamer, Darden, and Craver (2000) mechanism approach to gaining an understanding of explanation in cognitive neuroscience. We argue that although the mechanism approach can capture many aspects of explanation in cognitive neuroscience, it cannot capture everything. In particular, it cannot completely capture all aspects of the content and significance of mental representations or the evaluative features constitutive of psychopathology.
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  9.  68
    Marij van Strien (2013). The Nineteenth Century Conflict Between Mechanism and Irreversibility. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 44 (3):191-205.
    The reversibility problem (better known as the reversibility objection) is usually taken to be an internal problem in the kinetic theory of gases, namely the problem of how to account for the second law of thermodynamics within this theory. Historically, it is seen as an objection that was raised against Boltzmann's kinetic theory of gases, which led Boltzmann to a statistical approach to the kinetic theory, culminating in the development of statistical mechanics. In this paper, I show that in the (...)
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  10.  38
    Adrian Wüthrich (2012). Eating Goldstone Bosons in a Phase Transition: A Critical Review of Lyre’s Analysis of the Higgs Mechanism. [REVIEW] Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 43 (2):281-287.
    In this note, I briefly review Lyre's analysis and interpretation of the Higgs mechanism. Contrary to Lyre, I maintain that, on the proper understanding of the term, the Higgs mechanism refers to a physical process in the course of which gauge bosons acquire a mass. Since also Lyre's worries about imaginary masses can be dismissed, a realistic interpretation of the Higgs mechanism seems viable.
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  11.  62
    Carl F. Craver (2003). The Making of a Memory Mechanism. Journal of the History of Biology 36 (1):153-95.
    Long-Term Potentiation (LTP) is a kind of synaptic plasticity that many contemporary neuroscientists believe is a component in mechanisms of memory. This essay describes the discovery of LTP and the development of the LTP research program. The story begins in the 1950's with the discovery of synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus (a medial temporal lobe structure now associated with memory), and it ends in 1973 with the publication of three papers sketching the future course of the LTP research program. The (...)
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  12.  30
    Johannes Persson (2010). Activity-Based Accounts of Mechanism and the Threat of Polygenic Effects. Erkenntnis 72 (1):135 - 149.
    Accounts of ontic explanation have often been devised so as to provide an understanding of mechanism and of causation. Ontic accounts differ quite radically in their ontologies, and one of the latest additions to this tradition proposed by Peter Machamer, Lindley Darden and Carl Craver reintroduces the concept of activity. In this paper I ask whether this influential and activity-based account of mechanisms is viable as an ontic account. I focus on polygenic scenarios—scenarios in which the causal truths depend (...)
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  13.  8
    Lucas J. Matthews (2016). On Closing the Gap Between Philosophical Concepts and Their Usage in Scientific Practice: A Lesson From the Debate About Natural Selection as a Mechanism. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 55:21-28.
    In addition to theorizing about the role and value of mechanisms in scientific explanation or the causal structure of the world, there is a fundamental task of getting straight what a ‘mechanism’ is in the first place. Broadly, this paper is about the challenge of application: the challenge of aligning one's philosophical account of a scientific concept with the manner in which that concept is actually used in scientific practice. This paper considers a case study of the challenge of (...)
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  14.  70
    Stewart Shapiro (2003). Mechanism, Truth, and Penrose's New Argument. Journal of Philosophical Logic 32 (1):19-42.
    Sections 3.16 and 3.23 of Roger Penrose's Shadows of the mind (Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1994) contain a subtle and intriguing new argument against mechanism, the thesis that the human mind can be accurately modeled by a Turing machine. The argument, based on the incompleteness theorem, is designed to meet standard objections to the original Lucas-Penrose formulations. The new argument, however, seems to invoke an unrestricted truth predicate (and an unrestricted knowability predicate). If so, its premises are inconsistent. The (...)
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  15.  22
    Kari L. Theurer (2014). Seventeenth-Century Mechanism: An Alternative Framework for Reductionism. Philosophy of Science 80 (5):907-918.
    The current antireductionist consensus rests in part on the indefensibility of the deductive-nomological model of explanation, on which classical reductionism depends. I argue that the DN model is inessential to the reductionist program and that mechanism provides a better framework for thinking about reductionism. This runs counter to the contemporary mechanists’ claim that mechanism is an alternative to reductionism. I demonstrate that mechanists are committed to reductionism, as evidenced by the historical roots of the contemporary mechanist program. This (...)
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  16.  34
    Jonathan S. Spackman & Stephen C. Yanchar (2014). Embodied Cognition, Representationalism, and Mechanism: A Review and Analysis. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 44 (1):46-79.
    Embodied cognition has attracted significant attention within cognitive science and related fields in recent years. It is most noteworthy for its emphasis on the inextricable connection between mental functioning and embodied activity and thus for its departure from standard cognitive science's implicit commitment to the unembodied mind. This article offers a review of embodied cognition's recent empirical and theoretical contributions and suggests how this movement has moved beyond standard cognitive science. The article then clarifies important respects in which embodied cognition (...)
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  17. John R. Lucas (1970). Mechanism: A Rejoinder. Philosophy 45 (April):149-51.
    PROFESSOR LEWIS 1 and Professor Coder 2 criticize my use of Gödel's theorem to refute Mechanism. 3 Their criticisms are valuable. In order to meet them I need to show more clearly both what the tactic of my argument is at one crucial point and the general aim of the whole manoeuvre.
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  18.  38
    Sébastien Rivat (2014). On the Heuristics of the Higgs Mechanism. Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 45 (2):351-367.
    This article has two aims. First, I undertake an extensive review of the Higgs mechanism and its connections with spontaneous symmetry breaking and the Goldstone theorem. I take the opportunity to expound and discuss a certain number of philosophical issues, amongst them surplus structure and redundancies. Second, I offer a defence of the metaphor according to which ‘gauge fields eat Goldstone bosons to gain a mass’ as sensible rather than merely misleading. It is sensible because there is a direct (...)
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  19.  70
    Simon Friederich (2014). A Philosophical Look at the Higgs Mechanism. Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 45 (2):335-350.
    On the occasion of the recent experimental detection of a Higgs-type particle at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, the paper reviews philosophical aspects of the Higgs mechanism as the presently preferred account of the generation of particle masses in the Standard Model of elementary particle physics and its most discussed extensions. The paper serves a twofold purpose: on the one hand, it offers an introduction to the Higgs mechanism and its most interesting philosophical aspects to readers not (...)
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  20.  2
    Sarah K. Robins (2016). Optogenetics and the Mechanism of False Memory. Synthese 193 (5):1561-1583.
    Constructivists about memory argue that memory is a capacity for building representations of past events from a generalized information store. The view is motivated by the memory errors discovered in cognitive psychology. Little has been known about the neural mechanisms by which false memories are produced. Recently, using a method I call the Optogenetic False Memory Technique, neuroscientists have created false memories in mice. In this paper, I examine how Constructivism fares in light of O-FaMe results. My aims are two-fold. (...)
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  21.  20
    Cihua Xu & Hengwei Li (2011). Abduction and Metaphor: An Inquiry Into Common Cognitive Mechanism. [REVIEW] Frontiers of Philosophy in China 6 (3):480-491.
    Abduction and metaphor are two significant concepts in cognitive science. It is found that the both mental processes are on the basis of certain similarity. The similarity inspires us to seek the answers to the following two questions: (1) Whether there is a common cognitive mechanism behind abduction and metaphor? And (2) if there is, whether this common mechanism could be interpreted within the unified frame of modern intelligence theory? Centering on these two issues, the paper attempts to (...)
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  22.  24
    Morten Severinsen (2001). Principles Behind Definitions of Diseases – a Criticism of the Principle of Disease Mechanism and the Development of a Pragmatic Alternative. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 22 (4):319-336.
    Many philosophers and medical scientists assume thatdisease categories or entities used to classify concrete cases ofdisease, are often defined by disease mechanisms or causalprocesses. Others suggest that diseases should always be definedin this manner. This paper discusses these standpoints criticallyand concludes that they are untenable, not only when `diseasemechanism' refers to an objective mechanism, but also when`mechanism' refers to a pragmatically demarcated part of thetotal ``objective'' causal structure of diseases. As an alternativeto principles that use the concept of (...)
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  23.  52
    Marina Paola Banchetti-Robino (2011). Ontological Tensions in Sixteenth and Seventeenth Century Chemistry: Between Mechanism and Vitalism. Foundations of Chemistry 13 (3):173-186.
    The sixteenth and seventeenth centuries marks a period of transition between the vitalistic ontology that had dominated Renaissance natural philosophy and the Early Modern mechanistic paradigm endorsed by, among others, the Cartesians and Newtonians. This paper will focus on how the tensions between vitalism and mechanism played themselves out in the context of sixteenth and seventeenth century chemistry and chemical philosophy, particularly in the works of Paracelsus, Jan Baptista Van Helmont, Robert Fludd, and Robert Boyle. Rather than argue that (...)
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  24.  14
    Antoine Cornuéejols, Andrée Tiberghien & Gérard Collet (2000). A New Mechanism for Transfer Between Conceptual Domains in Scientific Discovery and Education. Foundations of Science 5 (2):129-155.
    Confronted with problems or situations that do not yield toknown theories and world views, scientists and students are alike. Theyare rarely able to directly build a model or a theory thereof. Rather,they must find ways to make sense of the circumstances using theircurrent knowledge and adjusting what is recognized in the process. Thisway of thinking, using past ways of perceiving the physical world tobuild new ones does not follow a logical path and cannot be described astheory revision. Likewise, in many (...)
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  25.  4
    Fabrizio Desideri (2015). Epigenesis and Coherence of the Aesthetic Mechanism. Aisthesis. Pratiche, Linguaggi E Saperi Dell’Estetico 8 (1):25-40.
    Can we properly define and explain the human mind an aesthetic mind? The purpose of the paper is to answer this and the related questions that it implies. How do we understand the conceptual field of the aesthetic? What do we mean when we speak about an aesthetic experience or when we express an aesthetic judgement? The first move consists in shaping the outlines of the «aesthetic» as a cluster-concept. Having identified the conceptual core of aesthetic as an expressive synthesis (...)
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  26.  36
    Michael Detlefsen (2002). Löb's Theorem as a Limitation on Mechanism. Minds and Machines 12 (3):353-381.
    We argue that Löb's Theorem implies a limitation on mechanism. Specifically, we argue, via an application of a generalized version of Löb's Theorem, that any particular device known by an observer to be mechanical cannot be used as an epistemic authority (of a particular type) by that observer: either the belief-set of such an authority is not mechanizable or, if it is, there is no identifiable formal system of which the observer can know (or truly believe) it to be (...)
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  27.  21
    David Coder (1969). Godel's Theorem and Mechanism. Philosophy 44 (September):234-7.
    In “Minds, Machines, and Gödel”, J. R. Lucas claims that Goedel's incompleteness theorem constitutes a proof “that Mechanism is false, that is, that minds cannot be explained as machines”. He claims further that “if the proof of the falsity of mechanism is valid, it is of the greatest consequence for the whole of philosophy”. It seems to me that both of these claims are exaggerated. It is true that no minds can be explained as machines. But it is (...)
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  28.  7
    Richard Pagni (2011). Do the Solvolysis Reactions of Secondary Substrates Occur by the S N 1 or S N 2 Mechanism: Or Something Else? [REVIEW] Foundations of Chemistry 13 (2):131-143.
    Primary and methyl aliphatic halides and tosylates undergo substitution reactions with nucleophiles in one step by the classic S N 2 mechanism, which is characterized by second-order kinetics and inversion of configuration at the reaction center. Tertiary aliphatic halides and tosylates undergo substitution reactions with nucleophiles in two (or more) steps by the classic S N 1 mechanism, which is characterized by first-order kinetics and incomplete inversion of configuration at the reaction center due to the presence of ion (...)
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  29.  20
    Nathan Ross (2008). On Mechanism in Hegel's Social and Political Philosophy. Routledge.
    The critique of mechanism in the political philosophy of Herder and German romanticism -- The political function of machine metaphors in Hegel's early writings -- Mechanism in religious practice -- The mechanization of labor and the birth of modern ethicality in Hegel's Jena political writings -- Mechanism and the problem of self-determination in Hegel's logic -- The modern state as absolute mechanism : Hegel's logical insight into the relation of civil society and the state.
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  30. Simon van Rysewyk (2013). Pain is Mechanism. Dissertation, University of Tasmania
    What is the relationship between pain and the body? I claim that pain is best explained as a type of personal experience and the bodily response during pain is best explained in terms of a type of mechanical neurophysiologic operation. I apply the radical philosophy of identity theory from philosophy of mind to the relationship between the personal experience of pain and specific neurophysiologic mechanism and argue that the relationship between them is best explained as one of type identity. (...)
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  31. Phyllis Illari & Jon Williamson (2012). What is a Mechanism? Thinking About Mechanisms Across the Sciences. European Journal for Philosophy of Science 2 (1):119-135.
    After a decade of intense debate about mechanisms, there is still no consensus characterization. In this paper we argue for a characterization that applies widely to mechanisms across the sciences. We examine and defend our disagreements with the major current contenders for characterizations of mechanisms. Ultimately, we indicate that the major contenders can all sign up to our characterization.
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  32. William Bechtel (2005). Explanation: A Mechanist Alternative. Studies in History and Philosophy of Biol and Biomed Sci 36 (2):421--441.
    Explanations in the life sciences frequently involve presenting a model of the mechanism taken to be responsible for a given phenomenon. Such explanations depart in numerous ways from nomological explanations commonly presented in philosophy of science. This paper focuses on three sorts of differences. First, scientists who develop mechanistic explanations are not limited to linguistic representations and logical inference; they frequently employ dia- grams to characterize mechanisms and simulations to reason about them. Thus, the epistemic resources for presenting mechanistic (...)
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  33. Fiona Macpherson (2012). Cognitive Penetration of Colour Experience: Rethinking the Issue in Light of an Indirect Mechanism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 84 (1):24-62.
    Can the phenomenal character of perceptual experience be altered by the states of one's cognitive system, for example, one's thoughts or beliefs? If one thinks that this can happen then one thinks that there can be cognitive penetration of perceptual experience; otherwise, one thinks that perceptual experience is cognitively impenetrable. I claim that there is one alleged case of cognitive penetration that cannot be explained away by the standard strategies one can typically use to explain away alleged cases. The case (...)
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  34. Jaegwon Kim (1989). Mechanism, Purpose, and Explanatory Exclusion. Philosophical Perspectives 3:77-108.
  35. Norman Malcolm (1968). The Conceivability of Mechanism. Philosophical Review 77 (January):45-72.
  36.  56
    David Lewis (1969). Lucas Against Mechanism. Philosophy 44 (June):231-3.
    J. R. Lucas argues in “Minds, Machines, and Gödel”, that his potential output of truths of arithmetic cannot be duplicated by any Turing machine, and a fortiori cannot be duplicated by any machine. Given any Turing machine that generates a sequence of truths of arithmetic, Lucas can produce as true some sentence of arithmetic that the machine will never generate. Therefore Lucas is no machine.
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  37. Pietro Gori (2014). Nietzsche and Mechanism. On the Use of History for Science. In Helmut Heit & Lisa Heller (eds.), Handbuch Nietzsche und die Wissenschaften. De Gruyter 119-137.
    This paper is devoted to a comparison between Ernst Mach's and Friedrich Nietzsche's anti-metaphysical approach to scientific and philosophical concepts. By making reference to Mach’s early essay on the conservation of energy (Die Geschichte und die Wurzel des Satzes von der Erhaltung der Arbeit, 1872), I argue that Nietzsche shares with him the idea that the concepts we adopt are only useful fictions developed during the history of humankind and its culture. This idea is fundamental for the development (...)
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  38.  32
    David Lewis (1979). Lucas Against Mechanism II. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 9 (June):373-6.
    J. R. Lucas argues in “Minds, Machines, and Gödel”, that his potential output of truths of arithmetic cannot be duplicated by any Turing machine, and a fortiori cannot be duplicated by any machine. Given any Turing machine that generates a sequence of truths of arithmetic, Lucas can produce as true some sentence of arithmetic that the machine will never generate. Therefore Lucas is no machine.
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  39.  97
    Lenny Moss & Daniel J. Nicholson (2012). On Nature and Normativity: Normativity, Teleology, and Mechanism in Biological Explanation. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 43 (1):88-91.
  40.  23
    A. Goldman (1969). The Compatibility of Mechanism and Purpose. Philosophical Review 78 (October):468-82.
  41.  80
    Michiru Nagatsu (2010). Function and Mechanism: The Metaphysics of Neuroeconomics. Journal of Economic Methodology 17 (2):197-205.
    In this paper, I examine metaphysical aspects in the neuroeconomics debate. I propose that part of the debate can be better understood by supposing two metaphysical stances, mechanistic and functional. I characterize the two stances, and discuss their relations. I consider two models of framing, in order to illustrate how the features of mechanistic and functional stances figure in the practice of the sciences of individual decision making.
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  42. W. J. Talbott (1990). The Reliability of the Cognitive Mechanism: A Mechanist Account of Empirical Justification. Garland.
    First Published in 1990. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.
     
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  43.  1
    P. M. Heimann & Robert E. Schofield (1972). Mechanism and Materialism: British Natural Philosophy in An Age of Reason. Philosophical Quarterly 22 (87):178.
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  44.  41
    Rodney M. J. Cotterill (1997). On the Mechanism of Consciousness. Journal of Consciousness Studies 4 (3):231-48.
    The master-module theory of consciousness is considered in the light of experimental evidence that has emerged since the model was first published. It is found that these new results tend to strengthen the original hypothesis. It is also argued that the master module is involved in generation of the schemata previously postulated to be associated with consciousness . The recent discovery of attention-related activity in the thalamic intralaminar nuclei is taken to indicate that these structures constitute an important part of (...)
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  45.  89
    Donald M. Mackay (1963). Consciousness and Mechanism: A Reply to Miss Fozzy. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 14 (August):157-159.
  46.  80
    William H. Hanson (1971). Mechanism and Godel's Theorem. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 22 (February):9-16.
  47.  79
    Andrew D. Irvine (1983). Lucas, Lewis, and Mechanism -- One More Time. Analysis 43 (March):94-98.
  48.  12
    George M. Strander (1988). Tropism and Equivocation: Notes on Dennett's "Mechanism and Responsibility". Auslegung 14:171-184.
  49.  4
    Barnaby R. Hutchins (2015). Descartes, Corpuscles and Reductionism: Mechanism and Systems in Descartes' Physiology. Philosophical Quarterly 65 (261):669-689.
    I argue that Descartes explains physiology in terms of whole systems, and not in terms of the size, shape and motion of tiny corpuscles (corpuscular mechanics). It is a standard, entrenched view that Descartes’ proper means of explanation in the natural world is through strict reduction to corpuscular mechanics. This view is bolstered by a handful of corpuscular–mechanical explanations in Descartes’ physics, which have been taken to be representative of his treatment of all natural phenomena. However, Descartes’ explanations of the (...)
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  50.  61
    C. Chihara (1972). On Alleged Refutations of Mechanism Using Godel's Incompleteness Results. Journal of Philosophy 69 (September):507-26.
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