Synthese 198 (9):8213-8232 (2020)
AbstractCharacter-trait attribution is an important component of everyday social cognition that has until recently received insufficient attention in traditional accounts of folk psychology. In this paper, I consider how the case of character-trait attribution fits into the debate between mindreading-based and broadly ‘pluralistic’ approaches to folk psychology. Contrary to the arguments of some pluralists, I argue that the evidence on trait understanding does not show that it is a distinct, non-mentalistic mode of folk-psychological reasoning, but rather suggests that traits are ordinarily understood as mentalistic dispositions. I also examine several ways in which trait attribution might also serve regulative, ‘mindshaping’ functions by promoting predictable norm-governed behavior, and argue that mindreading plays several important roles in these cases as well. I conclude that an appreciation of the relationship between trait attribution and mindreading is crucial to understanding the role it plays in our folk psychology.
Similar books and articles
First-Person Folk Psychology: Mindreading or Mindshaping?Leon De Bruin - 2016 - Studia Philosophica Estonica 9 (1):170-183.
The Complementarity of Mindshaping and Mindreading.Uwe Peters - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 18 (3):533-549.
It’s in Your Nature: A Pluralistic Folk Psychology.Kristin Andrews - 2008 - Synthese 165 (1):13 - 29.
Getting to Know You: Accuracy and Error in Judgments of Character.Evan Westra - 2020 - Mind and Language 35 (5):583-600.
Character and Theory of Mind: An Integrative Approach.Evan Westra - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (5):1217-1241.
Do Apes Read Minds?: Toward a New Folk Psychology.Kristin Andrews - 2012 - MIT Press.
Self-Interpretation as First-Person Mindshaping: Implications for Confabulation Research.Derek Strijbos & Leon de Bruin - 2015 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 18 (2):297-307.
The Folk Psychological Spiral: Explanation, Regulation, and Language.Kristin Andrews - 2015 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 53 (S1):50-67.
Mindreading, Mindsharing, and the Origins of Self-Consciousness.James M. Dow - 2012 - Philosophical Topics 40 (2):39-70.
Beliefs as Inner Causes: The (Lack of) Evidence.Devin Sanchez Curry - 2018 - Philosophical Psychology 31 (6):850-877.
Quine and the Contemporary Debate on Misreading.Giancarlo Zanet - 2012 - Disputatio 4 (32):395 - 412.
Folk Psychology as Mental Simulation.Luca Barlassina & Robert M. Gordon - 2017 - The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Added to PP
Historical graph of downloads
References found in this work
Lack of Character: Personality and Moral Behavior.John M. Doris - 2002 - Cambridge University Press.
Why the Child’s Theory of Mind Really Is a Theory.Alison Gopnik & Henry M. Wellman - 1992 - Mind and Language 7 (1-2):145-71.