Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 73 (2):287-305 (2011)
In a previous issue of Tijdschrift voor Filosofie, Filip Buekens argues that evolutionary psychology (EP), or some interpretations thereof, have a corrosive impact on our ‘manifest self-image’. Buekens wants to defend and protect the global adequacy of this manifest self-image in the face of what he calls evolutionary revisionism. Although we largely agree with Buekens’ central argument, we criticize his analysis on several accounts, making some constructive proposals to strengthen his case. First, Buekens’ argument fails to target EP, because his notion of the ‘constitutive conditions’ of our attitudes is too wide and too extensive. Second, his defense of the global adequacy of our attitudes does not allow for sufficient differentiation to analyze the problem of potential self-refutation with respect to EP. Third, his account of knowledge about constitutive conditions, and its impact on our self-image, is problematic. We provide a more detailed explanation for the pervasiveness of evolutionary revisionism and other misconceptions about EP. Finally, we consider in what sense EP may legitimately affect our self-image, and whether it can truly inspire corrections of our view of human nature
|Keywords||evolutionary psychology evolutionary debunking arguments proximate and ultimate causes manifest self-image revisionism naturalized epistemology|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
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