Systematicity and Conceptual Pluralism

In Paco Calvo & John Symons (eds.), The Architecture of Cognition: Rethinking Fodor and Pylyshyn's Systematicity Challenge. MIT Press. pp. 305-334 (2014)
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Abstract

The systematicity argument only challenges connectionism if systematicity is a general property of cognition. I examine this thesis in terms of properties of concepts. First, I propose that Evans's Generality Constraint only applies to attributions of belief. Then I defend a variety of conceptual pluralism, arguing that concepts share two fundamental properties related to centrality and belief-attribution, and contending that there are two kinds of concepts that differ in their compositional properties. Finally, I rely on Dual Systems Theory and on differences between animal and human cognition to suggest a scenario of two processing systems that work on different kinds of concepts, with only one of them supporting full systematicity. I sketch a non-classical systematicity argument that rules out classicism as the basis of one of those systems given that it would wrongly entail that both systems are fully systematic.

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Fernando Martinez-Manrique
Universidad de Granada

References found in this work

The Varieties of Reference.Gareth Evans - 1982 - Oxford: Oxford University Press. Edited by John Henry McDowell.
Concepts: Where Cognitive Science Went Wrong.Jerry A. Fodor - 1998 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press.
Doing without concepts.Edouard Machery - 2009 - New York: Oxford University Press.

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