Contemporary caution against anachronism in intellectual history, and the currently momentous theoretical emphasis on subjectivity in the philosophy of mind, are two prevailing conditions that set puzzling constraints for studies in the history of philosophicalpsychology. The former urges against assuming ideas, motives, and concepts that are alien to the historical intellectual setting under study, and combined with the latter suggests caution in relying on our intuitions regarding subjectivity due to the historically contingent characterizations it has attained in (...) contemporary philosophy of mind. In the face of these conditions, our paper raises a question of what we call non-textual (as opposed to contextual) standards of interpretation of historical texts, and proceeds to explore subjectivity as such a standard. Non-textual standards are defined as (heuristic) postulations of features of the world or our experience of it that we must suppose to be immune to historical variation in order to understand a historical text. Although the postulation of such standards is often so obvious that the fact of our doing so is not noticed at all, we argue that the problems in certain special cases, such as that of subjectivity, force us to pay attention to the methodological questions involved. Taking into account both recent methodological discussion and the problems inherent in two de facto denials of the relevance of subjectivity for historical theories, we argue that there are good grounds for the adoption of subjectivity as a non-textual standard for historical work in philosophicalpsychology. (shrink)
Near the beginning of Beyond Good and Evil, Nietzsche writes that “psychology is once again the path to the fundamental problems” (BGE 23). This raises a number of questions. What are these “fundamental problems” that psychology helps us to answer? How exactly does psychology bear on philosophy? In this conference paper, I provide a partial answer to these questions by focusing upon the way in which psychology informs Nietzsche’s account of value. I argue that Nietzsche’s ethical (...) theory is based upon the idea that power has a privileged normative status: power is the one value in terms of which all others values are to be assessed. If this is the correct interpretation of Nietzsche’s ethical theory, though, it raises a question: how could power have a privileged status, given that Nietzsche denies that there are any objective facts about what is valuable? I argue that Nietzsche’s account of psychology provides the answer: he grounds power’s privileged status in facts about the nature of human motivation. In particular, Nietzsche’s account of drives entails that human beings are ineluctably committed to valuing power. So Nietzsche’s ethical theory follows from his philosophicalpsychology. (shrink)
Freud claimed that the concept of drive is "at once the most important and the most obscure element of psychological research." It is hard to think of a better proof of Freud's claim than the work of Nietzsche, which provides ample support for the idea that the drive concept is both tremendously important and terribly obscure. Although Nietzsche's accounts of agency and value everywhere appeal to drives, the concept has not been adequately explicated. I remedy this situation by providing an (...) account of drives. I argue that Nietzschean drives are dispositions that generate evaluative orientations, in part by affecting perceptual saliences. In addition, I show that drive psychology has important implications for contemporary accounts of reflective agency. Contemporary philosophers often endorse a claim that has its origins in Locke and Kant: self-conscious agents are capable of reflecting on and thereby achieving a distance from their motives; therefore, these motives do not determine what the agent will do. Nietzsche's drive psychology shows that the inference in the preceding sentence is illegitimate. The drive psychology articulates a way in which motives can determine the agent's action by influencing the course of the agent's reflective deliberations. An agent who reflects on a motive and decides whether to act on it may, all the while, be surreptitiously guided by the very motive upon which he is reflecting. I show how this point complicates traditional models of the role of reflection in agency. (shrink)
This article is the sequel to 'Intentionality and Modern philosophicalpsychology, I. The modern reduction of intentionality,' (PhilosophicalPsychology, 3 (2), 1990) which examined the view of intentionality pioneered by Carnap and reaching its apotheosis in the work of Daniel Dennett. In 'Intentionality and modem philosophicalpsychology, II. The return to representation' (PhilosophicalPsychology, 4(1), 1991) I examined the approach to intentionality which can be traced back to the work of Noam Chomsky (...) but which has been given its canonical treatment in the work of Jerry Fodor. In this article, the last in the series, I explore a very recent approach to intentionality which has been associated especially with the work of Ruth Garrett Millikan and Colin McGinn, and might, if the phrase were not so rebarbative, be called “the biologizing of intentionality'. (shrink)
In rounded terms and modem dress a theory of intentionality is a theory about how humans take in information via the senses and in the very process of taking it in understand it and, most often, make subsequent use of it in guiding human behaviour. The problem of intentionality in this century has been the problem of providing an adequate explanation of how a purely physical causal system, the brain, can both receive information and at the same time understand it, (...) that is, to put it even more briefly, how a brain can have semantic content. In these two articles, one in this issue of the journal and one in the next, I engage in a critical examination of the two most thoroughly canvassed approaches to the theory and problem of intentionality in philosophicalpsychology over the last hundred years. In the first article, entitled 'The modern reduction of intentionality, ' I examine the approach pioneered by Carnap and reaching its apotheosis in the work of Daniel Dennett. In the second article, entitled 'The return to representation, 'I examine the approach which can be traced back to the work of Noam Chomsky but which has been given its canonical treatment in the work of Jerry Fodor. (shrink)
Abstract In rounded terms and modern dress a theory of intentionality is a theory about how humans take in information via the senses and in the very process of taking it in understand it and, most often, make subsequent use of it in guiding human behaviour. The problem of intentionality in this century has been the problem of providing an adequate explanation of how a purely physical causal system, the brain, can both receive information and at the same time understand (...) it, that is, to put it even more briefly, how a brain can have semantic content. In two articles, one in the previous number of the journal and this present one, I engage in a critical examination of the two most thoroughly canvassed approaches to the theory and problem of intentionality in philosophicalpsychology over the last 100 years. In the first article, subtitled ?The modern reduction of intentionality?, I examined the reductive approach pioneered by Carnap and reaching its apotheosis in the work of Daniel Dennett. In this second article, subtitled ?The return to representation?, I examine the approach which can be traced back to the work of Noam Chomsky but which has been given its canonical treatment in the work of Jerry Fodor. (shrink)
Historiography of science faces a preliminary question of strategy. A continuist conception of the history of science poses research problems different from those of a dynamic conception, which acknowledges that not only our theoretical knowledge but also the explananda themselves may change under the influence of new scientific insights. Whereas continuist historiography may advance our understanding of (the historical background of) current theoretical problems, dynamic historiography may also make a creative contribution to the progress of present-day research. This f act (...) is illustrated in a discussion of the various treatments of paradigmatic episodes in the history of philosophicalpsychology collected in the book under review, ranging from Socratic and Platonic sources of cognitivism, through medieval and modem views on mental language, representation and consciousness, to such 20th-century contributions as those of Husserl, Titchener, and analytic philosophy. (shrink)
Merleau-ponty's phenomenology of the intentional arc uniting body and world is viewed as grounded in the meaningfulness and materiality of both. the genetic constitution of the interrelated meaning and physicality of body and world is sketched in a phenomenological interpretation of jean piaget's ``the origin of intelligence in children''. from this sketch emerges an assertion of the priority of action over perception in prepredicative experience.
The chapter gives a general description of philosophicalpsychology as it was practiced and taught in the sixteenth century at three of the most important universities of the time, the universities of Erfurt, Padua, and Bologna. Contrary to received notions of the Renaissance it argues that the sixteenth-century philosophicalpsychology was tightly bound to the Aristotelian tradition. At the University of Erfurt, philosophicalpsychology was developed with strong adherence to the basic doctrines of Buridanian (...) via moderna, as it had been taught for over a century. The Buridanian approach dominated especially discussions on the metaphysical nature of the human soul and disputes about universal realism versus nominalism. The situation was somewhat different at the universities of Bologna and Padua. The connections between these two universities were close, and they can be seen as developing one and the same Aristotelian tradition. Although the works produced were rather eclectic in nature, they shared research topics as well as conceptual and methodological frameworks which contributed to the unity of the school. In Bologna and Padua, Averroës had a central position as an authority cited and criticized; and philosophical questions concerning the immortality of the soul and the nature of the intellectual species attracted continuous interest. The development of philosophicalpsychology was also influenced by the special organizational situation of these universities: theology had a relatively unimportant position, and medicine instead had continuous impact on teaching. (shrink)
Highlights of a difficult history -- The preliminary identification of our topic -- Approaches -- Bradley's protest -- James's disjunctive theory -- The source of Bradley's dissatisfaction -- Behaviourism and after -- Heirs of Bradley in the twentieth century -- The underlying metaphysical issue -- Explanatory tactics -- The basic distinction -- Metaphysical categories and taxonomies -- Adverbialism, multiple realizability, and natural kinds -- Adverbialism and levels of explanation -- Taxonomies and supervenience relations -- Rejecting the process : first view (...) -- Supervenience-failure -- The modal commitments of the process : first view -- The interference argument : a putative problem for adverbialist accounts -- Cognitive unison -- The problem with attitude based adverbialism -- Gilbert Ryle and Alan White -- White's argument against disposition-based adverbialism -- The cognitive unison theory -- Tasks -- Cognitive processes -- Potential service of a task -- Superordinate tasks -- Some features of the theory -- Divided attention -- Degrees of attention and merely partial attention -- The causal life of attention -- Mental causation -- How to respond to mental causation objections -- The causal role of attention -- Attention as an enabling condition -- Counterfactuals -- The causal relevance of attention per se -- Counterfactuals and causally relevant properties -- Objections to counterfactual analysis of causation and of causal relevance -- The extrinsicness of unison -- The privative character of unison and the problem of absence causation -- Causal exclusion -- Consequences for cognitive psychology -- Psychology and metaphysics -- The metaphysical commitments of the process-identifying project -- The diverse explanatory construals of current psychological results -- Reasons for deflation -- Inductively unreliable properties -- Questions without answers -- The positive payoff -- Philosophical work for the theory of attention -- Putting attention to philosophical work -- Attention and reference -- Attention and consciousness -- Prospects for optimism. (shrink)
Three proponents of the Canberra Plan, namely Jackson, Pettit, and Smith, have developed a collective functionalist program—Canberra Functionalism—spanning from philosophicalpsychology to ethics. They argue that conceptual analysis is an indispensible tool for research on cognitive processes since it reveals that there are some folk concepts, like belief and desire, whose functional roles must be preserved rather than eliminated by future scientific explanations. Some naturalists have recently challenged this indispensability argument, though the point of that challenge has been (...) blunted by a mutual conflation of metaphysical and methodological strands of naturalism. I argue that the naturalist’s challenge to the indispensability argument, like naturalism itself, ought to be reformulated as a strictly methodological thesis. So understood, the challenge succeeds by showing (1) that we cannot know a priori on the basis of conceptual analysis of folk platitudes that something must occupy the functional roles specified for beliefs and desires, and (2) that proponents of Canberra Functionalism sometimes tacitly concede this point by treating substantive psychological theories as the deliverances of a priori platitudes analysis. (shrink)
Mark Platts' influential first book Ways of Meaning argued within the context of the philosophy of language that a `realist' account of moral thought was possible. Moral Realities defends the same possibility from the perspective of the philosophy of psychology. Moral Realities engages the classical moral philosophies of Hume, Mandeville and Nietzsche, and tackles the powerful arguments of the contemporary moral relativists. Platts uses an existing critique of philosophical notions of desire and value to present a descriptive metaphysics (...) of morals--clarifying both what morality is and what it is not. He also employs a classification of desire that articulates a general theory of value and valuing which is distinguished by a cognitive approach given to certain kinds of moral valuing. The possibility of applying this approach to moral valuings is defended against the persuasive criticisms of both the Humean subjectivist and the contemporary moral relativist. This is a challenging book which illuminates many of the major issues of contemporary moral philosophy including: the practical nature of moral thought, free will and choice, morality and religious belief, and the pragmatics of moral discourse. (shrink)
In this introductory article, we provide a historical and philosophical framework for studying crisis discussions in psychology. We first trace the various meanings of crisis talk outside and inside of the sciences. We then turn to Kuhn’s concept of crisis, which is mainly an analyst’s category referring to severe clashes between theory and data. His view has also dominated many discussions on the status of psychology: Can it be considered a “mature” science, or are we dealing here (...) with a pre- or multi-paradigmatic discipline? Against these Kuhnian perspectives, we point out that especially, but not only in psychology distinctive crisis declarations and debates have taken place since at least the late 19th century. In these, quite different usages of crisis talk have emerged, which can be determined by looking at (a) the content and (b) the dimensions of the declarations, as well as (c) the functions these declarations had for their authors. Thus, in psychology at least, ‘crisis’ has been a vigorous actor’s category, occasionally having actual effects on the future course of research. While such crisis declarations need not be taken at face value, they nevertheless help to break the spell of Kuhnian analyses of psychology’s history. They should inform ways in which the history and philosophy of psychology is studied further. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: 1. Introducing persons and the psychology of personhood Jack Martin and Mark H. Bickhard; Part I. Philosophical, Conceptual Perspectives: 2. The person concept and the ontology of persons Michael A. Tissaw; 3. Achieving personhood: the perspective of hermeneutic phenomenology Charles Guignon; Part II. Historical Perspectives: 4. Historical psychology of persons: categories and practice Kurt Danziger; 5. Persons and historical ontology Jeff Sugarman; 6. Critical personalism: on its tenets, its historical obscurity, and its future (...) prospects James T. Lamiell; Part III. Social-Developmental Perspectives: 7. Conceiving of self and others as persons: evolution and development John Barresi, Chris Moore and Raymond Martin; 8. Position exchange theory and personhood: moving between positions and perspectives within physical, sociocultural and psychological space and time Jack Martin and Alex Gillespie; 9. The emergent ontology of persons Mark H. Bickhard; 10. Theorising personhood for the world in transition and change: reflections from a transformative activist stance on human development Anna Stetsenko; Part IV. Narrative Perspectives: 11. Identity and narrative as root metaphors of personhood Amia Lieblich and Ruthellen Josselson; 12. Storied persons: the double triad of narrative identity Mark Freeman. (shrink)
From his return to Cambridge in 1929 to his death in 1951, Ludwig Wittgenstein, who published only one work in his lifetime, influenced philosophy almost exclusively through teaching and discussion. These lecture notes, therefore, are an important record of the development of Wittgenstein's thought; they indicate the interests he maintained in his later years and signal what he considered the salient features of his thinking. Further, the notes from an enlightening addition to his posthumously published writings. P. T. Geach, A. (...) C. Jackson, and K. J. Shah kept meticulous notes from the last formal course that Wittgenstein taught at Cambridge. In order to reconstruct as accurately as possible the words of Wittgenstein, this volume compiles all three sets of notes with no attempt to conflate or edit them beyond rendering them into lucid English. Topics covered by the notes in this volume include the private language argument, the grammar of sensation statements, certainty and experimentation in psychology, and, in general, the same set of concerns as are to be found in his Last Writings and Remarks on the Philosophy of Psychology . The source material provided in these lecture notes is vital to Wittgenstein scholarship. (shrink)
Collection of original essays on the theory of desire by Robert Audi, Annette Baier, Wayne Davis, Ronald de Sousa, Robert Gordon, O.H. Green, Joel Marks, Dennis Stampe, Mitchell Staude, Michael Stocker, and C.C.W. Taylor.
Philosophical anthropology is concerned with assumptions about human nature, differential psychology with the empirical investigation of such belief systems. A questionnaire composed of 64 questions concerning brain and consciousness, free will, evolution, meaning of life, belief in God, and theodicy problem was used to gather data from 563 students of psychology at seven universities and from 233 students enrolled in philosophy or the natural sciences. Essential concepts were monism–dualism–complementarity, atheism–agnosticism–deism–theism, attitude toward transcendence–immanence, and self-ratings of religiosity and (...) interest in meaning of life. The response profiles (Menschenbild) of women and men, and of psychology students in the first and midterm of study were very similar. The method of statistical twins indicated a number of differences between students of psychology, philosophy, and the natural sciences. The majority of respondents were convinced that philosophical preconceptions on mind–body and free will have important practical implications for the way in which psychotherapists, physicians, or and judges exercise their professions. (shrink)
A relatively detailed review (~ 4000 words) of Christopher Mole's (2010) book "Attention is Cognitive Unison". I suggest that Mole makes a good case against many types of reductivist accounts of attention, using the right kind of methodology. Yet, I argue that his adverbialist theory is not the best articulation of the crucial anti-reductivist insight. The distinction between adverbial and process-first phenomena he draws remains unclear, anti-reductivist process theories can escapte his arguments, and finally I provide an argument for why (...) no personal level adverbialism can provide a complete and unified theory of attention. Despite my disagreements, I have learned a lot from engaging with Mole's book. It's a central contribution to the new philosophical literature on attention. (shrink)
This volume draws together important selections from the rich history of theories and debates about emotion. Utilizing sources from a variety of subject areas including philosophy, psychology, and biology, the editors provide an illuminating look at the "affective" side of psychology and philosophy from the perspective of the world's great thinkers. Part One features classic readings from Aristotle, Descartes, Spinoza, and Hume. Part Two, entitled "The Meeting of Philosophy and Psychology," samples the theories of thinkers such as (...) Darwin, James, and Freud. The third section presents some of the extensive work on emotion that has been done by European philosophers over the past century, and the final section comprises essays from modern British and American philosophers. (shrink)
This book presents an overview of the later medieval trinitarian theology of the rival Franciscan and Dominican intellectual traditions, and includes detailed studies of thinkers such as Thomas Aquinas, Henry of Ghent, John Duns Scotus, ...
This chapter examines several ways in which philosophical attention to intuition can contribute to empirical scientific psychology. The authors then discuss one prevalent misuse of intuition. An unspoken assumption of much argumentation in the philosophy of mind has been that to articulate our folk psychological intuitions, our ordinary concepts of belief, truth, meaning, and so forth, is itself sufficient to give a theoretical account of what belief, truth, meaning, and so forth, actually are. It is believed that this (...) assumption rests on an inadequate understanding of the nature of intuition and its appropriate applications, and that it results in errors. Three notable examples of this sort of misuse of intuition in philosophy are briefly discussed. Finally, the authors provide developmental evidence for the mutability and fallibility of everyday intuitions about the mind, evidence that undermines arguments, that depend on taking such intuitions as a final authority for substantive claims about what the mind is like. (shrink)