The nature of nature: Rethinking naturalistic theories of intentionality

Philosophical Psychology 10 (3):309-322 (1997)

Lawrence Shapiro
University of Wisconsin, Madison
While there is controversy over which of several naturalistic theories of the mental is most plausible, there is consensus regarding the desideratum of a naturalistically respectable theory. A naturalistic theory of the mental, it is agreed, must explicate representation in nonintentional terms. I argue that this constraint does not get at the heart of what it is to be natural. On the one hand, it fails to provide us with a meaningful distinction between the natural and the unnatural. On the other hand, it unfairly suggests that we withhold judgment on those successes our sciences of the mind have already achieved until a convincing decomposition of the mental is available. I urge a new conception of naturalism that focuses less upon ontological considerations and more upon methodological ones
Keywords Consciousness  Intentionality  Mental  Nature  Science
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DOI 10.1080/09515089708573222
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References found in this work BETA

Word and Object.W. QUINE - 1960 - MIT Press.
Vison.David Marr - 1982 - W. H. Freeman.

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Naturalisms in Philosophy of Mind.Steven Horst - 2009 - Philosophy Compass 4 (1):219-254.
The Principle of Conservatism in Cognitive Ethology.Elliott Sober - 2001 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 49:225-238.
The Principle of Conservatism in Cognitive Ethology.Elliott Sober - 2001 - In D. Walsh (ed.), Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement. Cambridge University Press. pp. 225-238.

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