- Added by: Björn Freter, Contributed by: Saranga Sudarshan
Publisher’s Note: Only human beings have a rich conceptual repertoire with concepts like tort, entropy, Abelian group, mannerism, icon and deconstruction. How have humans constructed these concepts? And once they have been constructed by adults, how do children acquire them? While primarily focusing on the second question, in The Origin of Concepts , Susan Carey shows that the answers to both overlap substantially.
Carey begins by characterizing the innate starting point for conceptual development, namely systems of core cognition. Representations of core cognition are the output of dedicated input analyzers, as with perceptual representations, but these core representations differ from perceptual representations in having more abstract contents and richer functional roles. Carey argues that the key to understanding cognitive development lies in recognizing conceptual discontinuities in which new representational systems emerge that have more expressive power than core cognition and are also incommensurate with core cognition and other earlier representational systems. Finally, Carey fleshes out Quinian bootstrapping, a learning mechanism that has been repeatedly sketched in the literature on the history and philosophy of science. She demonstrates that Quinian bootstrapping is a major mechanism in the construction of new representational resources over the course of childrens cognitive development.
Carey shows how developmental cognitive science resolves aspects of long-standing philosophical debates about the existence, nature, content, and format of innate knowledge. She also shows that understanding the processes of conceptual development in children illuminates the historical process by which concepts are constructed, and transforms the way we think about philosophical problems about the nature of concepts and the relations between language and thought.Export citation in BibTeX formatExport text citationView this text on PhilPapersExport citation in Reference Manager formatExport citation in EndNote formatExport citation in Zotero format
- Added by: Clotilde Torregrossa, Contributed by: Simon Fokt
Abstract: The debate concerning the phenomenology of thought is marked by severe disagreement about how best to characterize a given conscious thought on the basis of introspective reflecting upon it. In this paper I focus on the fact of this introspection-based disagreement – in particular, on its epistemic import for participants in the debate. How ought these philosophers respond when facing such radical disagreement about the deliverance of introspection? I argue that the fact of such disagreement itself should lead participants to be less confident – or even to suspend judgement – in their own introspection-based claims. If that is right, then to the extent that the debate about the phenomenology of thought is carried out by appeal to introspective evidence, this constitutes a serious epistemological concern. At the very least, if this is the epistemically appropriate response, non?trivial reliance of introspective evidence in the debate comes under pressure.Export citation in BibTeX formatExport text citationView this text on PhilPapersExport citation in Reference Manager formatExport citation in EndNote formatExport citation in Zotero format