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Paul Davies
College of William and Mary
  1.  22
    Darwinizing Debunking Arguments.Paul Sheldon Davies - forthcoming - Ratio.
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  2.  8
    Norms of Nature. Naturalism and the Nature of Functions.Paul Sheldon Davies - 2002 - Mind 111 (443):657-662.
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  3.  78
    Malfunctions.Paul Sheldon Davies - 2000 - Biology and Philosophy 15 (1):19-38.
    A persistent boast of the historical approach to functions is that functional properties are normative. The claim is that a token trait retains its functional status even when it is defective, diseased, or damaged and consequently unable to perform the relevant task. This is because historical functional categories are defined in terms of some sort of historical success -- success in natural selection, typically -- which imposes a norm upon the performance of descendent tokens. Descendents thus are supposed to perform (...)
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  4.  51
    Subjects of the World: Darwin's Rhetoric and the Study of Agency in Nature.Paul Sheldon Davies - 2009 - University of Chicago Press.
    Being human while trying to scientifically study human nature confronts us with our most vexing problem. Efforts to explicate the human mind are thwarted by our cultural biases and entrenched infirmities; our first-person experiences as practical agents convince us that we have capacities beyond the reach of scientific explanation. What we need to move forward in our understanding of human agency, Paul Sheldon Davies argues, is a reform in the way we study ourselves and a long overdue break with traditional (...)
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  5.  78
    The Nature of Natural Norms: Why Selected Functions Are Systemic Capacity Functions.Paul Sheldon Davies - 2000 - Noûs 34 (1):85–107.
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  6.  56
    Discovering the Functional Mesh: On the Methods of Evolutionary Psychology. [REVIEW]Paul Sheldon Davies - 1996 - Minds and Machines 6 (4):559-585.
    The aim of this paper is to clarify and critically assess the methods of evolutionary psychology, and offer a sketch of an alternative methodology. My thesis is threefold. (1) The methods of inquiry unique to evolutionary psychology rest upon the claim that the discovery of theadaptive functions of ancestral psychological capacities leads to the discovery of thepsychological functions of those ancestral capacities. (2) But this claim is false; in fact, just the opposite is true. We first must discover the psychological (...)
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  7.  40
    Logical Reasoning and Domain Specificity: A Critique of the Social Exchange Theory of Reasoning.Paul Sheldon Davies, James H. Fetzer & Thomas R. Foster - 1995 - Biology and Philosophy 10 (1):1-37.
    The social exchange theory of reasoning, which is championed by Leda Cosmides and John Tooby, falls under the general rubric evolutionary psychology and asserts that human reasoning is governed by content-dependent, domain-specific, evolutionarily-derived algorithms. According to Cosmides and Tooby, the presumptive existence of what they call cheater-detection algorithms disconfirms the claim that we reason via general-purpose mechanisms or via inductively acquired principles. We contend that the Cosmides/Tooby arguments in favor of domain-specific algorithms or evolutionarily-derived mechanisms fail and that the notion (...)
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  8.  27
    Giving Reasons for What We Do.Paul Sheldon Davies - 2016 - Southwest Philosophy Review 32 (1):135-144.
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  9.  78
    'Defending' Direct Proper Functions.Paul Sheldon Davies - 1995 - Analysis 55 (4):299.
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  10.  61
    Sober on Brandon on Screening-Off and the Levels of Selection.Robert N. Brandon, Janis Antonovics, Richard Burian, Scott Carson, Greg Cooper, Paul Sheldon Davies, Christopher Horvath, Brent D. Mishler, Robert C. Richardson, Kelly Smith & Peter Thrall - 1994 - Philosophy of Science 61 (3):475-486.
    Sober (1992) has recently evaluated Brandon's (1982, 1990; see also 1985, 1988) use of Salmon's (1971) concept of screening-off in the philosophy of biology. He critiques three particular issues, each of which will be considered in this discussion.
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  11.  91
    Some Evolutionary Model or Other: Aspirations and Evidence in Evolutionary Psychology.Paul Sheldon Davies - 2009 - Philosophical Psychology 22 (1):83 – 97.
  12.  55
    Troubles for Direct Proper Functions.Paul Sheldon Davies - 1994 - Noûs 28 (3):363-381.
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  13. The Physics of Downward Causation.Paul Sheldon Davies - 2006 - In Philip Clayton & Paul Sheldon Davies (eds.), The Re-Emergence of Emergence. Oxford University Press.
  14.  14
    The Excesses of Teleosemantics.Paul Sheldon Davies - 2001 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 31 (sup1):117-137.
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  15.  64
    Preface: Evolutionary Theory in Cognitive Psychology. [REVIEW]Paul Sheldon Davies - 1996 - Minds and Machines 6 (4):445-462.
  16. Conceptual Conservatism : The Case of Normative Functions.Paul Sheldon Davies - 2009 - In Ulrich Krohs & Peter Kroes (eds.), Functions in Biological and Artificial Worlds: Comparative Philosophical Perspectives. MIT Press.
     
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  17.  35
    Does Past Selective Efficacy Matter to Psychology?Paul Sheldon Davies - 2002 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (4):513-514.
    Andrews et al. subscribe to the view that distinguishing selectionist from nonselectionist hypotheses – or, distinguishing adaptations from mere spandrels or exaptations – is important to the study of psychology. I offer three reasons for thinking that this view is false; that considerations of past selective efficacy have little to contribute to inquiry in psychology.
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  18.  52
    Deflating Consciousness: A Critical Review of Fred Dretske's Naturalizing the Mind.Paul Sheldon Davies - 1997 - Philosophical Psychology 10 (4):541-550.
    Fred Dretske asserts that the conscious or phenomenal experiences associated with our perceptual states—e.g. the qualitative or subjective features involved in visual or auditory states—are identical to properties that things have according to our representations of them. This is Dretske's version of the currently popular representational theory of consciousness . After explicating the core of Dretske's representational thesis, I offer two criticisms. I suggest that Dretske's view fails to apply to a broad range of mental phenomena that have rather distinctive (...)
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  19.  43
    Unmasking Self-Deception. [REVIEW]Paul Sheldon Davies - 2005 - Philosophia 32 (1-4):413-417.
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  20. The Conflict of Evolutionary Psychology.Paul Sheldon Davies - 1999 - In Valerie Gray Hardcastle (ed.), Where Biology Meets Psychology. MIT Press.
     
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  21.  48
    Book Reviews. [REVIEW]Joseph Agassi, Dorit Bar-on, D. S. Clarke, Paul Sheldon Davies, Anthony J. Graybosch, Lila Luce, Paul K. Moser, Saul Smilansky, Roger Smook, William Sweet, John J. Tilley & Ruth Weintraub - 1994 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 23 (1-4):359-362.
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  22.  30
    Book Reviews. [REVIEW]Paul Sheldon Davies, David C. Graves, Justin Leiber & Anat Matar - 1995 - Philosophia 24 (3-4):531-558.
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  23. 'Defending' Proper Functions.Paul Sheldon Davies - 1995 - Analysis 55 (4):299.
     
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  24. Evolutionary Functions and Philosophy of Mind.Paul Sheldon Davies - 1994 - Dissertation, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
    This dissertation is concerned with two general issues. A theory of functional or teleological properties, as possessed by natural objects, grounded in the theory of evolution by natural selection. This I refer to as the evolutionary theory of functions. A cluster of theories in philosophy of mind which attempt to explicate intentionality--the representational powers of mental phenomena--in terms of evolutionary functions. ;The aim of this dissertation is threefold. To develop a version of the evolutionary theory of functions in which the (...)
     
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