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Steven Horst [26]Steven W. Horst [1]
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Profile: Steven Horst (Wesleyan University)
  1. Steven Horst, How (Not) to Give a Theory of Concepts.
    This paper presents the lineaments of a new account of concepts. The foundations of the account are four ideas taken from recent cognitive science, though most of them have important philosophical precursors. The first is the idea that human conceptuality shares important continuities with psychological faculties of other animals, and indeed that there is a well-distinguished hierarchy of such faculties that extend up and down the phylogenetic scale. While it would very likely be a mistake to look at some conglomeration (...)
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  2. Steven Horst, Laws, Idealization, and the Status of Psychology.
    The SPP is, among other things, a place where we discuss nagging and perennial problems on the bordermarches between philosophy and the sciences. Sometimes problems are nagging and perennial because they are deep and difficult. And sometimes they are merely an artifact, a shadow cast by our own way of formulating the problem. I should like to suggest to you that philosophy of mind suffers badly from being the last refuge of the best philosophy of science of the 1950's, and (...)
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  3. Steven Horst, Shorst@Wesleyan.Edu.
    Recent debates about the metaphysics of mind have tended to assume that inter-theoretic reductions are the norm in the natural sciences. With this assumption in place, the apparent explanatory gaps surrounding consciousness and intentionality seem unique, fascinating, and perhaps metaphysically significant. Over the past several decades, however, philosophers of science have largely rejected the notions that inter-theoretic reduction is either widespread in the natural sciences or a litmus for the legitimacy of the special sciences. If we adopt a post-reductionist philosophy (...)
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  4. Steven Horst, Cognitive Pluralism.
    Philosophy has both a critical and a speculative mode. In its critical mode, philosophy examines the assumptions and the reasoning of some body of discourse, often with an eye towards showing that its adherents have claimed more than they have justified, or that they are employing assumptions that are problematic or mutually inconsistent. You might say that critical philosophy “puts the brakes on” other intellectual projects. In its speculative mode, philosophy does just the opposite: it runs ahead of the evidence, (...)
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  5. Steven Horst, Goldilocks Searches for a Conceptual Semantics.
    This is a relatively breezy version of an exploration of some issues about how to provide a theory of concepts and conceptual semantics. I have also written more conventional versions of some of this material (without the Three Bears motif), though those are set in a broader context.
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  6. Steven Horst, Laws, Mind and Freedom.
    Since the seventeenth century, our understanding of the natural world has been one of phenomena that behave in accordance with natural laws. While other elements of the early modern scientific worldview may be rejected or at least held in question—the metaphor of the world as a great machine, the narrowly mechanist assumption that all physical interactions must be contact interactions, the idea that matter might actually be obeying rules laid down by its Divine Author – the notion of natural law (...)
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  7. Steven Horst, Mind and the World of Nature.
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  8. Steven Horst, New Semantics, Physicalism and a Posteriori Necessity.
    The New Semantics (NS) introduced by Kripke and Putnam is often thought to block antiphysicalist arguments that involve an inference from an explanatory gap to a failure of supervenience. But this “NS Rebuttal” depends upon two assumptions that are shown to be dubious. First, it assumes that mental-kind terms are among the kinds of terms to which NS analysis is properly applied. However, there are important differences in this regard between the behavior of notions like ‘pain’ and notions like ‘water’, (...)
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  9. Steven Horst (2014). Miracles and Two Accounts of Scientific Laws. Zygon 49 (2):323-347.
    Since early modernity, it has often been assumed that miracles are incompatible with the existence of the natural laws utilized in the sciences. This paper argues that this assumption is largely an artifact of empiricist accounts of laws that should be rejected for reasons internal to philosophy of science, and that no such incompatibility arises on the most important alternative interpretations, which treat laws as expressions of forces, dispositions, or causal powers.
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  10. Steven Horst (2013). Notions of Intuition in the Cognitive Science of Religion. The Monist 96 (3):377-398.
    This article examines the notions of “intuitive” and “counterintuitive” beliefs and concepts in cognitive science of religion. “Intuitive” states are contrasted with those that are products of explicit, conscious reasoning. In many cases the intuitions are grounded in the implicit rules of mental models, frames, or schemas. I argue that the pathway from intuitive to high theological concepts and beliefs may be distinct from that from intuitions to “folk religion,” and discuss how Christian theology might best interpret the results of (...)
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  11. Steven Horst (2011). Laws, Mind, and Free Will. A Bradford Book.
    An account of scientific laws that vindicates the status of psychological laws and shows natural laws to be compatible with free will.
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  12. Steven Horst (2011). Reply to Silberstein. Philosophical Psychology 24 (4):575-584.
    This response to Silberstein's review undertakes two tasks. First, it attempts to clarify aspects of Cognitive Pluralism and its relationship to anti-reductionism. Second, it engages Silberstein's claim that traditional metaphysics of mind is dead, or at least should no longer be pursued.
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  13. Steven Horst (2009). Naturalisms in Philosophy of Mind. Philosophy Compass 4 (1):219-254.
    Most contemporary philosophers of mind claim to be in search of a 'naturalistic' theory. However, when we look more closely, we find that there are a number of different and even conflicting ideas of what would count as a 'naturalization' of the mind. This article attempts to show what various naturalistic philosophies of mind have in common, and also how they differ from one another. Additionally, it explores the differences between naturalistic philosophies of mind and naturalisms found in ethics, epistemology, (...)
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  14. Steven Horst (2009). Review of Jakob Hohwy, Jesper Kallestrup (Eds.), Being Reduced: New Essays on Reduction, Explanation, and Causation. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2009 (6).
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  15. Steven W. Horst (2007). Beyond Reduction: Philosophy of Mind and Post-Reductionist Philosophy of Science. Oxford University Press.
    Contemporary philosophers of mind tend to assume that the world of nature can be reduced to basic physics. Yet there are features of the mind consciousness, intentionality, normativity that do not seem to be reducible to physics or neuroscience. This explanatory gap between mind and brain has thus been a major cause of concern in recent philosophy of mind. Reductionists hold that, despite all appearances, the mind can be reduced to the brain. Eliminativists hold that it cannot, and that this (...)
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  16. Steven Horst (2006). Review of Nicholas Georgalis, The Primacy of the Subjective: Foundations for a Unified Theory of Mind and Language. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2006 (6).
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  17. Steven Horst (2005). Modeling, Localization and the Explanation of Phenomenal Properties: Philosophy and the Cognitive Sciences at the Beginning of the Millennium. Synthese 147 (3):477-513.
    Case studies in the psychophysics, modeling and localization of human vision are presented as an example of.
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  18. Steven Horst (2005). Phenomenology and Psychophysics. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 4 (1):1-21.
    Recent philosophy of mind has tended to treat.
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  19. Steven Horst, The Computational Theory of Mind. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Over the past thirty years, it is been common to hear the mind likened to a digital computer. This essay is concerned with a particular philosophical view that holds that the mind literally is a digital computer (in a specific sense of “computer” to be developed), and that thought literally is a kind of computation. This view—which will be called the “Computational Theory of Mind” (CTM)—is thus to be distinguished from other and broader attempts to connect the mind with computation, (...)
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  20. Steven Horst (2002). Evolutionary Explanation and Consciousness. Journal of Psychology and Theology 30 (1):41-50.
  21. Steven Horst (1999). Evolutionary Explanation and the Hard Problem of Consciousness. Journal of Consciousness Studies 6 (1):39-48.
  22. Steven Horst (1999). Symbols and Computation: A Critique of the Computational Theory of Mind. Minds and Machines 9 (3):347-381.
    Over the past several decades, the philosophical community has witnessed the emergence of an important new paradigm for understanding the mind.1 The paradigm is that of machine computation, and its influence has been felt not only in philosophy, but also in all of the empirical disciplines devoted to the study of cognition. Of the several strategies for applying the resources provided by computer and cognitive science to the philosophy of mind, the one that has gained the most attention from philosophers (...)
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  23. Steven Horst (1998). Our Animal Bodies. Midwest Studies in Philosophy 22 (1):34-61.
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  24. Steven Horst (1996). Symbols, Computation, and Intentionality: A Critique of the Computational Theory of Mind. University of California Press.
    In this carefully argued critique, Steven Horst pronounces the theory deficient.
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  25. Steven Horst (1995). Eliminativism and the Ambiguity of `Belief'. Synthese 104 (1):123-45.
    It has recently been claimed (1) that mental states such as beliefs are theoretical entities and (2) that they are therefore, in principle, subject to theoretical elimination if intentional psychology were to be supplanted by a psychology not employing mentalistic notions. Debate over these two issues is seriously hampered by the fact that the key terms 'theoretical' and 'belief' are ambiguous. This article argues that there is only one sense of 'theoretical' that is of use to the eliminativist, and in (...)
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  26. Steven Horst (1992). Notions of 'Representation' in Philosophy and Empirical Research. In Proceedings of the Conference on Cognition and Representation.
  27. Steven Horst (1992). Proceedings of the Conference on Cognition and Representation.
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