Special sciences: Still a flawed argument after all these years

Cognitive Science 28 (3):409-432 (2004)

Abstract

Jerry Fodor has argued that the multiple realizability argument, as discussed in his original “Special Sciences” article, “refutes psychophysical reductionism once and for all.” I argue that his argument in “Special Sciences” does no such thing. Furthermore, if one endorses the physicalism that most supporters of the “Special Sciences” view endorse, special science laws must be reducible, in principle. The compatibility of MR with reduction, however, need not threaten the autonomy of the special sciences.

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Todd Jones
University of Nevada, Las Vegas

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