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Christopher Gauker [92]Christopher Paul Gauker [1]
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Christopher Gauker
University of Salzburg
  1. Words and Images: An Essay on the Origin of Ideas.Christopher Gauker - 2011 - Oxford University Press.
    At least since Locke, philosophers and psychologists have usually held that concepts arise out of sensory perceptions, thoughts are built from concepts, and language enables speakers to convey their thoughts to hearers. Christopher Gauker holds that this tradition is mistaken about both concepts and language. The mind cannot abstract the building blocks of thoughts from perceptual representations. More generally, we have no account of the origin of concepts that grants them the requisite independence from language. Gauker's alternative is to show (...)
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  2. Zero Tolerance for Pragmatics.Christopher Gauker - 2008 - Synthese 165 (3):359–371.
    The proposition expressed by a sentence is relative to a context. But what determines the content of the context? Many theorists would include among these determinants aspects of the speaker’s intention in speaking. My thesis is that, on the contrary, the determinants of the context never include the speaker’s intention. My argument for this thesis turns on a consideration of the role that the concept of proposition expressed in context is supposed to play in a theory of linguistic communication. To (...)
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  3. Words Without Meaning.Christopher Gauker - 2003 - MIT Press.
  4.  73
    Inner Speech as the Internalization of Outer Speech.Christopher Gauker - 2018 - In Peter Langland-Hassan & Agustin Vicente (eds.), Inner Speech: New Voices. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 53-77.
    This paper aims to clear a path for the thesis that inner speech, in the very languages we speak, is the sole medium of all conceptual thought. First, it is argued that inner speech should not be identified with the auditory imagery of speech. Since they are distinct, there may be many more episodes of inner speech than those that are accompanied by auditory imagery. Second, it is argued that it is not necessary to conceive of linguistic communication as a (...)
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  5. What is a Context of Utterance?Christopher Gauker - 1998 - Philosophical Studies 91 (2):149-172.
    For many purposes in pragmatics one needs to appeal to a context of utterance conceived as a set of sentences or propositions. The context of utterance in this sense is often defined as the set of assumptions that the speaker supposes he or she shares with the hearer. I argue by stages that this is a mistake. First, if contexts must be defined in terms of shared assumptions, then it would be preferable to define the context as the set of (...)
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  6.  81
    How to Learn Language Like a Chimpanzee.Christopher Gauker - 1990 - Philosophical Psychology 4 (1):139-46.
    This paper develops the hypothesis that languages may be learned by means of a kind of cause-effect analysis. This hypothesis is developed through an examination of E. Sue Savage-Rumbaugh's research on the abilities of chimpanzees to learn to use symbols. Savage-Rumbaugh herself tends to conceive of her work as aiming to demonstrate that chimpanzees are able to learn the "referential function" of symbols. Thus the paper begins with a critique of this way of viewing the chimpanzee's achievements. The hypothesis that (...)
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  7. Words Without Meaning.Christopher Gauker - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 72 (2):480-483.
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  8. Domain of Discourse.Christopher Gauker - 1997 - Mind 106 (421):1-32.
    The proposition expressed by an utterance of a quantified sentence depends on a domain of discourse somehow determined by the context. How does the context of utterance determine the content of the domain of discourse? Many philosophers would approach this question from the point of view of an expressive theory of linguistic communication, according to which the primary function of language is to enable speakers to convey the propositional contents of their thoughts to hearers. This paper argues that from this (...)
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  9. Against Accommodation: Heim, van der Sandt, and the Presupposition Projection Problem.Christopher Gauker - 2008 - Philosophical Perspectives 22 (1):171 - 205.
    This paper criticizes the dominant approaches to presupposition projection and proposes an alternative. Both the update semantics of Heim and the discourse representation theory of van der Sandt have problems in explicating the presuppositions of disjunctions. Moreover, Heim's approach is committed to a conception of accommodation that founders on the problem of informative presuppositions, and van der Sandt's approach is committed to a conception of accommodation that generates over-interpretations of utterances. The present approach borrows Karttunen's idea that instead of associating (...)
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  10.  54
    Three Kinds of Nonconceptual Seeing-As.Christopher Gauker - 2017 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 8 (4):763-779.
    It is commonly supposed that perceptual representations in some way embed concepts and that this embedding accounts for the phenomenon of seeing-as. But there are good reasons, which will be reviewed here, to doubt that perceptions embed concepts. The alternative is to suppose that perceptions are marks in a perceptual similarity space that map into locations in an objective quality space. From this point of view, there are at least three sorts of seeing-as. First, in cases of ambiguity resolution, the (...)
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  11. Linguistic Practice and False-Belief Tasks.Matthew van Cleave & Christopher Gauker - 2010 - Mind and Language 25 (3):298-328.
    Jill de Villiers has argued that children's mastery of sentential complements plays a crucial role in enabling them to succeed at false-belief tasks. Josef Perner has disputed that and has argued that mastery of false-belief tasks requires an understanding of the multiplicity of perspectives. This paper attempts to resolve the debate by explicating attributions of desires and beliefs as extensions of the linguistic practices of making commands and assertions, respectively. In terms of these linguistic practices one can explain why desire-talk (...)
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  12. Thinking Out Loud: An Essay on the Relation Between Thought and Language.Christopher Gauker - 1995 - Princeton University Press.
    An Essay on the Relation Between Thought and Language Christopher Gauker. things possible? How, having once perceived the herds by the lake, does the agent remember this for later use? My answer is that one way he may do it is ...
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  13. How Many Bare Demonstratives Are There in English?Christopher Gauker - 2014 - Linguistics and Philosophy 37 (4):291-314.
    In order to capture our intuitions about the logical consistency of sentences and the logical validity of arguments, a semantics for a natural language has to allow for the fact that different occurrences of a single bare demonstrative, such as “this”, may refer to different objects. But it is not obvious how to formulate a semantic theory in order to achieve this result. This paper first criticizes several proposals: that we should formulate our semantics as a semantics for tokens, not (...)
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  14. Against Stepping Back: A Critique of Contextualist Approaches to the Semantic Paradoxes.Christopher Gauker - 2006 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 35 (4):393-422.
    A number of philosophers have argued that the key to understanding the semantic paradoxes is to recognize that truth is essentially relative to context. All of these philosophers have been motivated by the idea that once a liar sentence has been uttered we can 'step back' and, from the point of view of a different context, judge that the liar sentence is true. This paper argues that this 'stepping back' idea is a mistake that results from failing to relativize truth (...)
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  15. Perception Without Propositions.Christopher Gauker - 2012 - Philosophical Perspectives 26 (1):19-50.
    In recent years, many philosophers have supposed that perceptual representations have propositional content. A prominent rationale for this supposition is the assumption that perceptions may justify beliefs, but this rationale can be doubted. This rationale may be doubted on the grounds that there do not seem to be any viable characterizations of the belief-justifying propositional contents of perceptions. An alternative is to model perceptual representations as marks in a perceptual similarity space. A mapping can be defined between points in perceptual (...)
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  16.  89
    Conditionals in Context.Christopher Gauker - 1987 - Erkenntnis 27 (3):293 - 321.
    This paper is obsolete. It is superseded by the book, Conditionals in Context, MIT Press, 2005.
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  17. Conditionals in Context.Christopher Gauker - 2005 - MIT Press.
    "If you turn left at the next corner, you will see a blue house at the end of the street." That sentence -- a conditional -- might be true even though it is possible that you will not see a blue house at the end of the street when you turn left at the next corner. A moving van may block your view; the house may have been painted pink; a crow might swoop down and peck out your eyes. Still, (...)
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  18. Situated Inference Versus Conversational Implicature.Christopher Gauker - 2001 - Noûs 35 (2):163–189.
    As Grice defined it, a speaker conversationally implicates that p only if the speaker expects the hearer to recognize that the speaker thinks that p. This paper argues that in the sorts of cases that Grice took as paradigmatic examples of conversational implicature there is in fact no need for the hearer to consider what the speaker might thus have in mind. Instead, the hearer might simply make an inference from what the speaker literally says and the situation in which (...)
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  19. The Belief-Desire Law.Christopher Gauker - 2005 - Facta Philosophica 7 (2):121-144.
    Many philosophers hold that for various reasons there must be psychological laws governing beliefs and desires. One of the few serious examples that they offer is the _belief-desire law_, which states, roughly, that _ceteris paribus_ people do what they believe will satisfy their desires. This paper argues that, in fact, there is no such law. In particular, decision theory does not support the contention that there is such a law.
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  20. What Tipper is Ready For: A Semantics for Incomplete Predicates.Christopher Gauker - 2012 - Noûs 46 (1):61-85.
    This paper presents a precise semantics for incomplete predicates such as “ready”. Incomplete predicates have distinctive logical properties that a semantic theory needs to accommodate. For instance, “Tipper is ready” logically implies “Tipper is ready for something”, but “Tipper is ready for something” does not imply “Tipper is ready”. It is shown that several approaches to the semantics of incomplete predicates fail to accommodate these logical properties. The account offered here defines contexts as structures containing an element called a proposition (...)
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  21. A Critique of the Similarity Space Theory of Concepts.Christopher Gauker - 2007 - Mind and Language 22 (4):317–345.
    A similarity space is a hyperspace in which the dimensions represent various dimensions on which objects may differ. The similarity space theory of concepts is the thesis that concepts are regions of similarity spaces that are somehow realized in the brain. Proponents of such a theory of concepts include Paul Churchland and Peter Gärdenfors. This paper argues that the similarity space theory of concepts is mistaken because regions of similarity spaces cannot serve as the components of judgments. It emerges that (...)
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  22.  18
    A Strictly Stronger Relative Must.Christopher Gauker - 2021 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 10 (2):82-89.
    It is widely accepted that when ‘might’ expresses certain kinds of relative modality, the sentence ‘p and it might not be the case that p’ is in some sense inconsistent. It has proven difficult to define a formal semantics that explicates this inconsistency while meeting certain other desiderata, in particular, that p does not imply ‘Must p’. This paper presents such a semantics. The key idea is that background contexts have to have multiple levels, including an inner set consisting of (...)
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  23. Metacognitive Deficits in Categorization Tasks in a Population with Impaired Inner Speech.Peter Langland-Hassan, Christopher Gauker, Michael J. Richardson, Aimee Deitz & Frank F. Faries - 2017 - Acta Psychologica 181:62-74.
    This study examines the relation of language use to a person’s ability to perform categorization tasks and to assess their own abilities in those categorization tasks. A silent rhyming task was used to confirm that a group of people with post-stroke aphasia (PWA) had corresponding covert language production (or “inner speech”) impairments. The performance of the PWA was then compared to that of age- and education-matched healthy controls on three kinds of categorization tasks and on metacognitive self-assessments of their performance (...)
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  24.  44
    On the Difference Between Realistic and Fantastic Imagining.Christopher Gauker - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-20.
    When we imaginatively picture what might happen, we may take what we imagine to be either realistic or fantastic. A wine glass falling to the floor and shattering is realistic. A wine glass falling and morphing into a bird and flying away is fantastic. What does the distinction consist in? Two important necessary conditions are here defined. The first is a condition on the realistic representation of spatial configuration, grounded in an account of the imagistic representation of spatial configuration. The (...)
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  25.  24
    Indicative Conditionals in Objective Contexts.Vít Punčochář & Christopher Gauker - 2020 - Theoria 86 (5):651-687.
    A conversation can be conceived as aiming to circumscribe a set of possibilities that are relevant to the goals of the conversation. This set of possibilities may be conceived as determined by the goals and objective circumstances of the interlocutors and not by their propositional attitudes. An indicative conditional can be conceived as circumscribing a set of possibilities that have a certain property: If the set of relevant possibilities is subsequently restricted to one in which the antecedent holds, then it (...)
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  26. The Illusion of Semantic Reference.Christopher Gauker - 2015 - In Andrea Bianchi (ed.), On Reference. Oxford University Press. pp. 11-39.
    A lot of us have given up on the idea that there will be a naturalistic account of the relation of semantic reference and so have resolved to formulate our theories of semantics and communication without appeal to semantic reference. Still, there is a resilient intuition to the effect that I know the extensions of the terms of my language. This paper explicates that intuition without yielding to it. The key idea is to give a “skeptical” account of what it (...)
     
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  27. The Circle of Deference Proves the Normativity of Semantics.Christopher Gauker - 2007 - Rivista di Estetica 34 (34):181-198.
    The question whether semantics is a normative discipline can be formulated as a question about the meaning of the word “means”. If I assert, “The word ‘gatto’ in Italian means cat,” what have I done? The naturalist about meaning claims that I have asserted that a certain natural relation obtains between Italian speakers’ tokens of “gatto” and cats. Or at least, I have asserted something about the way Italian speakers use the word “gatto”, which way presumably has something to do (...)
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  28. The Principle of Charity.Christopher Gauker - 1986 - Synthese 69 (October):1-25.
  29. Global Domains Versus Hidden Indexicals.Christopher Gauker - 2010 - Journal of Semantics 27 (2):243-270.
    Jason Stanley has argued that in order to obtain the desired readings of certain sentences, such as “In most of John’s classes, he fails exactly three Frenchmen”, we must suppose that each common noun is associated with a hidden indexical that may be either bound by a higher quantifier phrase or interpreted by the context. This paper shows that the desired readings can be obtained as well by interpreting nouns as expressing relations and without supposing that nouns are associated with (...)
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  30.  63
    Against the Speaker-Intention Theory of Demonstratives.Christopher Gauker - 2019 - Linguistics and Philosophy 42 (2):109-129.
    It is commonly supposed that an utterance of a demonstrative, such as “that”, refers to a given object only if the speaker intends to refer to that object. This paper poses three challenges to this theory. First, the theory threatens to beg the question by defining the content of the speaker’s intention in terms of reference. Second, the theory makes psychologically implausible demands on the speaker. Third, the theory entails that there can be no demonstratives in thought.
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  31. Social Externalism and Linguistic Communication.Christopher Gauker - 2003 - In Maria J. Frapolli & E. Romero (eds.), Meaning, Basic Self-Knowledge, and Mind: Essays on Tyler Burge. CSLI.
    According to the expressive theory of communication, the primary function of language is to enable speakers to convey the content of their thoughts to hearers. According to Tyler Burge's social externalism, the content of a person's thought is relative to the way words are used in his or her surrounding linguistic community. This paper argues that Burge's social externalism refutes the expressive theory of communication.
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  32. Contexts in Formal Semantics.Christopher Gauker - 2010 - Philosophy Compass 5 (7):568-578.
    Recent philosophical literature has debated the question of how much context-relativity needs to be countenanced in precise semantic theories for natural languages and has displayed different conceptions of the way in which it might be accommodated. This article presents reasons to think that context-relativity is a phenomenon that semantic theory must accommodate and identifies some of the issues concerning how it ought to be accommodated.
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  33. T-Schema Deflationism Versus Gödel’s First Incompleteness Theorem.Christopher Gauker - 2001 - Analysis 61 (2):129–136.
    I define T-schema deflationism as the thesis that a theory of truth for our language can simply take the form of certain instances of Tarski's schema (T). I show that any effective enumeration of these instances will yield as a dividend an effective enumeration of all truths of our language. But that contradicts Gödel's First Incompleteness Theorem. So the instances of (T) constituting the T-Schema deflationist's theory of truth are not effectively enumerable, which casts doubt on the idea that the (...)
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  34. Semantics and Pragmatics.Christopher Gauker - 2012 - In Gillian Russell & Delia Graff Fara (eds.), Routledge Companion to the Philosophy of Language. Routledge.
    Semantics deals with the literal meaning of sentences. Pragmatics deals with what speakers mean by their utterances of sentences over and above what those sentences literally mean. However, it is not always clear where to draw the line. Natural languages contain many expressions that may be thought of both as contributing to literal meaning and as devices by which speakers signal what they mean. After characterizing the aims of semantics and pragmatics, this chapter will set out the issues concerning such (...)
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  35.  10
    Belief, Introspection, and Constituted Kinds. Selected Papers from the Fifth Philosophy of Language and Mind Conference.Derek Ball, Christopher Gauker & Peter Pagin - 2022 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 13 (1):1-5.
  36.  62
    Inexplicit Thoughts.Christopher Gauker - 2013 - In Laurence Goldstein (ed.), Brevity. Oxford University Press. pp. 74-90.
    It is often assumed that, though we may speak in sentences that express propositions only inexplicitly, our thoughts must express their propositional contents explicitly. This paper argues that, on the contrary, thoughts too may be inexplicit. Inexplicit thoughts may effectively drive behavior inasmuch as they rest on a foundation of imagistic cognition. The paper also sketches an approach to semantic theory that accommodates inexplicitness in mental representations as well as in spoken sentences.
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  37.  82
    Logical Nihilism in Contemporary French Philosophy.Christopher Gauker - 2013 - Teorema: International Journal of Philosophy 32 (2):65-79.
    Recanati takes for granted the conveyance conception of linguistic communica- tion, although it is not very clear exactly where he lies on the spectrum of possible variations. Even if we disavow all such conceptions of linguistic communication, there will be a place for semantic theory in articulating normative concepts such as logical consistency and logical validity. An approach to semantics focused on such normative concepts is illustrated using the example of ““It’’s raining””. It is argued that Recanati’’s conception of semantics (...)
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  38. Intelligibility in Semantics: Reply to Van Deemter.Christopher Gauker - 1998 - Mind 107 (426):447-450.
  39. The Lockean Theory of Communication.Christopher Gauker - 1992 - Noûs 26 (3):303-324.
    The Lockean theory of communication is here defined as the theory that communication takes place when a hearer grasps some sort of mental object, distinct from the speaker's words, that the speaker's words express. This theory contrasts with the view that spoken languages are the very medium of a kind of thought of which overt speech is the most basic form. This article is a critique of some of the most common motives for adopting a Lockean theory of communication. It (...)
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  40.  36
    Open Texture and Schematicity as Arguments for Non-Referential Semantics.Christopher Gauker - 2017 - In Klaus Petrus Sarah-Jane Conrad (ed.), Meaning, Context, and Methodology. Berlin, Germany: Mouton de Gruyter. pp. 13-30.
    Many of the terms of our language, such as “jar”, are open-textured in the sense that their applicability to novel objects is not entirely determined by their past usage. Many others, such as the verbs “use” and “have”, are schematic in the sense that they have only a very general meaning although on any particular occasion of use they denote some more particular relation. The phenomena of open texture and schematicity constitute a sharp challenge to referential semantics, which assumes that (...)
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  41. The Mind-Independence of Contexts for Knowledge-Attributions.Giovanni Mion & Christopher Gauker - 2017 - In Jonathan Ichikawa (ed.), Routledge Handbook of Epistemic Contextualism. New York, USA: Routledge. pp. 455-464.
    If we say that the truth of a statement of the form “S knows that p” depends on the pertinent context, that raises the question, what determines the pertinent context? One answer would be: the speaker. Another would be: the speaker and the hearer jointly somehow. Yet a third answer would be: no one gets to decide; it is a matter of what the conversation is supposed to achieve and how the world really is, and it can happen that all (...)
     
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  42. Scientific Realism as an Issue in Semantics.Christopher Gauker - 2006 - In Patrick Greenough & Michael P. Lynch (eds.), Truth and Realism. Clarendon Press.
  43.  50
    Scientific Realism as an Issue in Semantics.Christopher Gauker - 2006 - In Patrick Greenough & Michael P. Lynch (eds.), Truth and Realism: New Debates. Oxford University Press. pp. 125.
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  44. Objective Interpretationism.Christopher Gauker - 1988 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 69 (June):136-51.
  45.  80
    Universal Instantiation: A Study of the Role of Context in Logic.Christopher Gauker - 1997 - Erkenntnis 46 (2):185-214.
    The rule of universal instantiation appears to be subject to counterexamples, although the rule of existential generalization is not subject to the same doubts. This paper is a survey of ways of responding to this problem, both conservative and revisionist. The conclusion drawn is that logical validity should be defined in terms of assertibility in a context rather than in terms of truth on an interpretation. Contexts are here defined, not in terms of the attitudes of the interlocutors, but in (...)
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  46. On the Alleged Priority of Thought Over Language.Christopher Gauker - 2007 - In Savas L. Tsohatzidis (ed.), John Searle's Philosophy of Language: Force, Meaning, and Mind. Cambridge University Press. pp. 125.
    It is obvious that there are kinds of cognition -- mental problem solving -- that do not require spoken language. But it should not be obvious that peculiarly conceptual thought is independent of spoken language. This paper is a critical survey of arguments concluding that conceptual thought must be independent of language. The special emphasis is on arguments that John Searle has put forward, but others are considered as well. These include the claim that only the intentionality of thought is (...)
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  47. On the Evidence for Prelinguistic Concepts.Christopher Gauker - 2005 - Theoria 20 (3):287-297.
    Language acquisition is often said to be a process of mapping words into pre-existing concepts. If that is right, then we ought to be able to obtain experimental evidence for the existence of concepts in prelinguistic children. One line of research that attempts to provide such evidence is the work of Paul Quinn, who claims that looking-time results show that four--month old infants form “category representations”. This paper argues that Quinn’s results have an alternative explanation. A distinction is drawn between (...)
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  48.  20
    Imagination Constrained, Imagination Constructed.Christopher Gauker - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
    A number of authors have asked what it takes for a course of mental imagery to be epistemically or practically useful. This paper addresses a prior question, namely, the difference between courses of imagination that are realistic and those that are fantastic. One approach, suggested by recent literature concerning the utility of imagery, holds that a course of imagination represents realistically if and only if the course of events represented conforms to certain accepted constraints. Against this it will be argued (...)
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  49. Deflationism and Logic.Christopher Gauker - 1999 - Facta Philosophica (1):167-199.
    Inference rule deflationism is the thesis that the nature of truth can be explained in terms of the inference rules governing the word "true". This paper argues, first, that, in light of the semantic paradoxes, the inference rule deflationist must reject some of the classical rules of inference. It is argued, secondly, that inference rule deflationism is incompatible with model theoretic approaches to the definition of logical validity. Here the argument focuses on the question whether the number of primitive referring (...)
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  50. What Do Your Senses Say? On Burge’s Theory of Perception.Christopher Gauker - 2012 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 85 (1):311-323.
    This is a critical review of Tyler Burge's book, Origins of Objectivity. Criticism focuses on Burge's claim that perceptions represent particulars as belonging to kinds.
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