We study logical systems for reasoning about equations involving recursive definitions. In particular, we are interested in "propositional" fragments of the functional language of recursion FLR [18, 17], i.e., without the value passing or abstraction allowed in FLR. The "pure," propositional fragment FLR 0 turns out to coincide with the iteration theories of . Our main focus here concerns the sharp contrast between the simple class of valid identities and the very complex consequence relation over several natural classes of models.
We study logical systems for reasoning about equations involving recursive definitions. In particular, we are interested in "propositional" fragments of the functional language of recursion FLR [18, 17], i.e., without the value passing or abstraction allowed in FLR. The "pure," propositional fragment FLR$_0$ turns out to coincide with the iteration theories of . Our main focus here concerns the sharp contrast between the simple class of valid identities and the very complex consequence relation over several natural classes of models.
In a recent article in this journal, D. Wade Hands reviewed Charles Taylor's two-volume work, Philosophical Papers. Hands predicts that Taylor's work will have no impact on the philosophy of economics. This may indeed turn out to be the case; but if so, it will only be because the profession is not listening. Of course, it is typical of the profession to be more interested in exporting its product than in learning from other disciplines. This is exemplified in Hands's use (...) of the term “philosophy of economics” – philosophy is the handmaiden of the highly successful enterprise of economics. But this journal is called Economics and Philosophy, which means that a conversation requiring an openness and attentiveness is called for between economics and philosophy. (shrink)
Shapiro tests these hypotheses against two rivals, the mental constraint thesis and the embodied mind thesis. Collecting evidence from a variety of sources (e.g., neuroscience, evolutionary theory, and embodied cognition) he concludes that the multiple realizability thesis, accepted by most philosophers as a virtual truism, is much less obvious than commonly assumed, and that there is even stronger reason to give up the separability thesis. In contrast to views of mind that tempt us to see the mind as simply being (...) resident in a brain or body, Shapiro argues for a far more encompassing integration of mind, brain, and body than philosophers have supposed. (publisher, edited). (shrink)
A line of research within embodied cognition seeks to show that an organism’s body is a determinant of its conceptual capacities. Comparison of this claim of body determinism to linguistic determinism bears interesting results. Just as Slobin’s (1996) idea of thinking for speaking challenges the main thesis of linguistic determinism, so too the possibility of thinking for acting raises difficulties for the proponent of body determinism. However, recent studies suggest that the body may, after all, have a determining role in (...) cognitive processes of sentence comprehension. (shrink)
When philosophers defend epiphenomenalist doctrines, they often do so by way of a priori arguments. Here we suggest an empirical approach that is modeled on August Weismann’s experimental arguments against the inheritance of acquired characters. This conception of how epiphenomenalism ought to be developed helps clarify some mistakes in two recent epiphenomenalist positions – Jaegwon Kim’s (1993) arguments against mental causation, and the arguments developed by Walsh (2000), Walsh, Lewens, and Ariew (2002), and Matthen and Ariew (2002) that natural selection (...) and drift are not causes of evolution. A manipulationist account of causation (Woodward 2003) leads naturally to an account of how macro- and micro-causation are related and to an understanding of how epiphenomenalism at different levels of organization should be understood. (shrink)
Frances Egan argues that the states of computational theories of vision are individuated individualistically and, as far as the theory is concerned, are not intentional. Her argument depends on equating the goals and explanatory strategies of computational psychology with those of its algorithmic level. However, closer inspection of computational psychology reveals that the computational level plays an essential role in explaining visual processes and that explanations at this level are nonindividualistic and intentional. In conclusion, I sketch an account of content (...) in which content does the sort of explanatory work that Egan denies is possible. (shrink)
Embodied cognition is one of the foremost areas of study and research in philosophy of mind, philosophy of psychology and cognitive science. The Routledge Handbook of Embodied Cognition is an outstanding guide and reference source to the key philosophers, topics and debates in this exciting subject and essential reading for any student and scholar of philosophy of mind and cognitive science. Comprising over thirty chapters by a team of international contributors, the Handbook is divided into six parts: Historical Underpinnings Perspectives (...) on Embodied Cognition Applied Embodied Cognition: Perception, Language and Reasoning Applied Embodied Cognition: Social and Moral Cognition and Emotion Applied Embodied Cognition: Memory, Attention and Group Cognition Meta-Topics. The early chapters of the Handbook cover empirical and philosophical foundations of embodied cognition, focusing on Gibsonian, phenomenological and cybernetic approaches. Subsequent chapters cover additional, important themes common to work in embodied cognition, incuding embedded , extended and enactive cognition as well as chapters on embodied cognition and empirical research in perception, language, reasoning, social and moral cognition, emotion, consciousness, memory and learning and development. (shrink)
Most contemporary moral philosophy is concerned with issues of rationality, universality, impartiality, and principle. By contrast Laurence Blum is concerned with the psychology of moral agency. The essays in this collection examine the moral import of emotion, motivation, judgment, perception, and group identifications, and explore how all these psychic capacities contribute to a morally good life. Blum takes up the challenge of Iris Murdoch to articulate a vision of moral excellence that provides a worthy aspiration for human beings. Drawing on (...) accounts of non-Jewish rescuers of Jews during the Holocaust Blum argues that impartial principle can mislead us about the variety of forms of moral excellence. (shrink)
Since Hilary Putnam offered multiple realization as an empirical hypothesis in the 1960s, philosophical consensus has turned against the idea that mental processes are identifiable with brain processes, and multiple realization has become the keystone of the 'antireductive consensus' across philosophy of science. Thomas W. Polger and Lawrence A. Shapiro offer the first book-length investigation of multiple realization, which serves as a starting point to a series of philosophically sophisticated and empirically informed arguments that cast doubt on the generality (...) of multiple realization in the cognitive sciences. They argue that mind-brain identities have played an important role in the growth and achievements of the cognitive sciences, and suggest that there is little prospect for multiple realization in an empirically-based theory of mind. This leads Polger and Shapiro to offer an alternative framework for understanding explanations in the cognitive sciences, as well as in chemistry, biology, and other non-basic sciences. (shrink)
In The Bounds of Cognition, Fred Adams and Kenneth Aizawa treat the arguments for extended cognition to withering criticism. I summarize their main arguments and focus special attention on their distinction between the extended cognitive system hypothesis and the extended cognition hypothesis, as well as on their demand for a mark of the mental.
A statement of the form ‘C caused E’ obeys the requirement of proportionality precisely when C says no more than what is necessary to bring about E. The thesis that causal statements must obey this requirement might be given a semantic or a pragmatic justification. We use the idea that causal claims are contrastive to criticize both.
According to media specialist and resident of multiple intentional communities Jesse Drew, “Communes and collectives provide the critical mass, the people power, and the collective wisdom to test out ideas in practice, not just in theory.”1 To test the vision of an ideal Vedic society grounded in devotion to the Hindu deity Krishna, in 1968, four followers of A. C. Bhaktivedanta Prabhupada set out for Moundsville, West Virginia, to establish New Vrindaban. These devotees were members of the Hare Krishna Movement, (...) also called the International Society of Krishna Consciousness, which Bhaktivedanta founded in 1966 and which has established temples and intentional communities in the United States and around.. (shrink)
Simone Weil — philosopher, trade union militant, factory worker — developed a penetrating critique of Marxism and a powerful political philosophy which serves an alternative both to liberalism and to Marxism. In A Truer Liberty , originally published in 1989, Blum and Seidler show how Simone Weil’s philosophy sought to place political action on a firmly moral basis. The dignity of the manual worker became the standard for political institutions and movements. Weil criticized Marxism for its confidence in progress and (...) revolution and its attendant illusory belief that history is on the side of the proletariat. Blum and Seidler relate Weil’s work to influential trends in political philosophy today, from analytic Marxism to central traditions within liberal thought. The authors stress the importance of Weil’s work for understanding liberation theology, Catholic radicalism, and, more generally, social movements against oppression which are closely tied to religion and spirituality. (shrink)
Carl Gillett has defended what he calls the “dimensioned” view of the realization relation, which he contrasts with the traditional “flat” view of realization (2003, 2007; see also Gillett 2002). Intuitively, the dimensioned approach characterizes realization in terms of composition whereas the flat approach views realization in terms of occupiers of functional roles. Elsewhere we have argued that the general view of realization and multiple realization that Gillett advances is not able to discharge the theoretical duties of those relations (Shapiro (...) 2004, unpublished manuscript; Polger 2004, 2007, forthcoming). Here we focus on an internal objection to Gillett’s account and then raise some broader reasons to reject it. (shrink)
When conceived as an empirical claim, it is natural to wonder how one might test the hypothesis of multiple realization. I consider general issues of testability, show how they apply specifically to the hypothesis of multiple realization, and propose an auxiliary assumption that, I argue, must be conjoined to the hypothesis of multiple realization to ensure its testability. I argue further that Bechtel and Mundale go astray because they fail to appreciate the need for this auxiliary assumption. †To contact the (...) author, please write to: Department of Philosophy, University of Wisconsin–Madison, 5185 Helen C. White Hall, 600 North Park Street, Madison, WI 53706; e‐mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. (shrink)
Jaegwon Kim's causal exclusion argument has rarely been evaluated from an empirical perspective. This is puzzling because its conclusion seems to be making a testable claim about the world: supervenient properties are causally inefficacious. An empirical perspective, however, reveals Kim's argument to rest on a mistaken conception about how to test whether a property is causally efficacious. Moreover, the empirical perspective makes visible a metaphysical bias that Kim brings to his argument that involves a principle of non-inclusion.
Christian List and Peter Menzies 2009 have looked to interventionist theories of causation for an answer to Jaegwon Kim's causal exclusion problem. Important to their response is the idea of realization-insensitivity. However, this idea becomes mired in issues concerning multiple realization, leaving it unable to fulfil its promise to block exclusion. After explaining why realization-insensitivity fails as a solution to Kim's problem, I look to interventionism to describe a different kind of solution.
ABSTRACT Proponents of mechanistic explanation have recently suggested that all explanation in the cognitive sciences is mechanistic, even functional explanation. This last claim is surprising, for functional explanation has traditionally been conceived as autonomous from the structural details that mechanistic explanations emphasize. I argue that functional explanation remains autonomous from mechanistic explanation, but not for reasons commonly associated with the phenomenon of multiple realizability. 1Introduction 2Mechanistic Explanation: A Quick Primer 3Functional Explanation: An Example 4Autonomy as Lack of Constraint 5The Price (...) of Autonomy 6Another Argument against Autonomy 7Conclusion: Autonomy and Multiple Realization. (shrink)
Many who advocate dynamical systems approaches to cognitive science believe themselves committed to the thesis of extended cognition and to the rejection of representation. I argue that this belief is false. In part, this misapprehension rests on a warrantless re-conception of cognition as intelligent behavior. In part also, it rests on thinking that conceptual issues can be resolved empirically. Once these issues are sorted out, the way is cleared for a dynamical systems approach to cognition that is free to retain (...) the standard conception of cognition as taking place in the head, and over representations. (shrink)
The ecological imagination: from paradigm to practice -- Narratives of agriculture: how did we get here? -- Balaram and the Yamuna River: entitlement and presumptions of control -- Borrowing Balaram: alternative narratives -- The festival of Holi: celebrating agricultural and social health -- The land in between: constructing nature, wilderness, and agriculture -- Restoration, reciprocity, and repair: revising the ecological imagination.
The environmental degradation caused by industrial agriculture, as well as the resulting social and health consequences, creates an urgency to rethink food production by expanding the moral imagination to include agricultural practices. Agricultural practices presume human use of the earth and acknowledge human dependence on the biotic community, and these relations mean that agriculture presents a separate set of considerations in the broader field of environmental ethics. Many scholars and activists have argued persuasively that we need new stories to rethink (...) agricultural practice, however, the link—the story that does and can shape agricultural practice—has not yet been fully articulated in environmental discourse. My analysis explores how language has shaped existing agricultural models and, more important, the potential of story to influence agricultural practice. To do this, I draw upon cognitive theory to illustrate how metaphoric and narrative language structures thought and influences practice, beginning with my contention that industrial agriculture relies on a discourse of mechanistic relations between humans and a passive earth, language that has naturalized the chemically intensive monocultures prevalent in much of the American Midwest. However, alternative agricultures, including organic agriculture, agro-ecology, and ecological agriculture, emphasize qualities such as interdependence and reciprocity and do so as a deliberate response to the perceived inadequacies of industrial agriculture and its governing narrative. Exploring the different discourses of agricultural systems can help us think through different modalities for human relations with the biotic community and demonstrate story’s potential role in altering practice. (shrink)
In The Sovereignty of Good Iris Murdoch suggests that the central task of the moral agent involves a true and loving perception of an- other individual, who is seen as a particular reality external to the agent. Writing in the 1960s she claimed that this dimension of morality had been "theorized away" in contemporary ethics. I will argue today that 20 years later, this charge still holds true of much contemporary ethical theory.
Jaegwon Kim has argued that if psychological kinds are multiply realizable then no single psychological theory can describe regularities ranging over psychological states. Instead, psychology must be fractured, with human psychology covering states realized in the human way, martian psychology covering states realized in the martian way, and so on. I show that even if one accepts the principles that motivate Kim.
Issues of identity and reduction have monopolized much of the philosopher of mind’s time over the past several decades. Interestingly, while investigations of these topics have proceeded at a steady rate, the motivations for doing so have shifted. When the early identity theorists, e.g. U. T. Place ( 1956 ), Herbert Feigl ( 1958 ), and J. J. C. Smart ( 1959 , 1961 ), fi rst gave voice to the idea that mental events might be identical to brain processes, (...) they had as their intended foil the view that minds are immaterial substances. But very few philosophers of mind today take this proposal seriously. Why, then, the continued interest in identity and reduction? Th e concern, as philosophers like Hilary Putnam and Jerry Fodor have expressed it, is that a victory for identity or reduction is a defeat for psychology. For if minds are physical, or if mental events are physical events, then psychologists might as well disassemble their laboratories, making room for the neuroscientists and molecular biologists who are in a better position to explain those phenomena once misdescribed as “psychological.” Th e worry nowadays is not that locating thought in immaterial souls will make psychology intractable, but that locating thoughts in material brains will make it otiose. (shrink)
Fodor (1990) argues that the theory of evolution by natural selection will not help to save naturalistic accounts of representation from the disjunction problem. This is because, he claims, the context 'was selected for representing things as F' is transparent to the substitution of predicates coextensive with F. But, I respond, from an evolutionary perspective representational contexts cannot be transparent: only under particular descriptions will a representational state appear as a "solution" to a selection "problem" and so be adaptive. Only (...) when we construe representational states as opaque in this manner are the generalizations of branches of evolutionary theory, like foraging theory, possible. (shrink)
Increasingly, psychologists have shown a healthy interest in cultural variation and a skepticism about assuming that research with North American and Northern European undergraduates provides reliable insight into universal psychological processes. Unfortunately, this reappraisal has not been extended to questioning the notion of culture central to this project. Rather, there is wide acceptance that culture refers to a kind of social form that is entity-like, territorialized, marked by a high degree of shared beliefs and coalescing into patterns of key values (...) that animate a broad range of cultural performances and representations. Ironically, anthropologists and other scholars in cultural studies have overwhelmingly come to reject this view of culture. Arguably, then, the move in psychology to attend to cultural environments has paradoxically further distanced it from the fields most concerned with cultural forms. This essay reviews this state of affairs and offers a proposal how a more nuanced appreciation of cultural life can be articulated with theories and methods familiar and available to psychologists. (shrink)