•  241
    Kirsten Besheer has recently considered Descartes’ doubting appropriately in the context of his physiological theories in the spirit of recent important re-appraisals of his natural philosophy. However, Besheer does not address the notorious indubitability and its source that Descartes claims to have discovered. David Cunning has remarked that Descartes’ insistence on the indubitability of his existence presents “an intractable problem of interpretation” in the light of passages that suggest …Read more
  •  2
    A 2nd look at Bloor, David knowledge and social imagery
    Philosophy of the Social Sciences 24 (3): 336-361. 1994.
    The recent republication of David Bloor's Knowledge and Social Imagery in a second edition provides an occasion to reappraise the celebrated work which launched the so-called Strong Programme in the sociology of scientific knowledge. This work embodies the general outlook and foundational principles in a way that is still characteristic of its descendents. Above all, the recent republication of Bloor's original book is evidence of the continuing interest and importance of the work, but it also p…Read more
  •  14
    In reviewing Finocchiaro's book, I argue that Galileo deserved to be found guilty for the charges against him. A measure of Finocchiaro's scrupulously fair-minded presentation of the issues surrounding the Galileo Affair is the fact that a contrary case against his own exculpatory evaluation may be inferred from his meticulous scholarship. Specifically, to acknowledge that the standards of evaluation and judgment have changed since 1633 is not in any way to diminish Galileo's greatness but, on t…Read more
  •  25
    Man not a subject for science?
    Social Epistemology 4 (4). 1990.
    No abstract
  •  83
    Was Descartes a liar? Diagonal doubt defended
    British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 39 (3): 379-388. 1988.
  • Descartes' startling doctrine of the reverse-sign relation
    In John Schuster, Stephen Gaukroger & John Sutton (eds.), Descartes' Natural Philosophy, Routledge. 2000.
  •  8
    The Relevance of Cognitive Science to Teaching, Proceedings of the 6th International History, Philosophy & Science Teaching Conference (IHPST), Denver, Colorado, November 7-10, 2001. (PDF)
  •  26
    Proceedings of the Sixth International History, Philosophy and Science Teaching Conference (IHPST), Denver, Colorado, November 7-10, 2001; and Australasian Association of History, Philosophy & Social Studies of Science (AAHPSSS), Melbourne University, June 25-28, 2001 (PDF).
  •  8
    Reinterpreting images
    Analysis 50 (4): 235-243. 1990.
  •  82
    Linguistic Explanation and ‘Psychological Reality’
    Croatian Journal of Philosophy 9 (1): 3-20. 2009.
    Methodological questions concerning Chomsky’s generative approach to linguistics have been debated without consensus. The status of linguistics as psychology, the psychological reality of grammars, the character of tacit knowledge and the role of intuitions as data remain heatedly disputed today. I argue that the recalcitrance of these disputes is symptomatic of deep misunderstandings. I focus attention on Michael Devitt’s recent extended critique of Chomskyan linguistics and I suggest that his …Read more
  •  39
    Talking to ourselves: The intelligibility of inner speech
    Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (6): 699-700. 2002.
    The possible role of language in intermodular communication and non-domain-specific thinking is an empirical issue that is independent of the “vehicle” claim that natural language is “constitutive” of some thoughts. Despite noting objections to various forms of the thesis that we think in language, Carruthers entirely neglects a potentially fatal objection to his own preferred version of this “cognitive conception.”.
  •  57
    Doubts about indubitability
    Philosophical Forum 41 (4): 389-412. 2010.
    Kirsten Besheer has recently considered Descartes’ doubting appropriately in the context of his physiological theories in the spirit of recent important re-appraisals of his natural philosophy. However, Besheer does not address the notorious indubitability and its source that Descartes claims to have discovered. David Cunning has remarked that Descartes’ insistence on the indubitability of his existence presents “an intractable problem of interpretation” in the light of passages that suggest …Read more
  •  64
    A Second Look at David Bloor’s Knowledge and Social Imagery
    Philosophy of the Social Sciences 24 (3): 336-361. 1994.
    The recent republication of David Bloor's Knowledge and Social Imagery in a second edition provides an occasion to reappraise the celebrated work which launched the so-called Strong Programme in the sociology of scientific knowledge. This work embodies the general outlook and foundational principles in a way that is still characteristic of its descendents. Above all, the recent republication of Bloor's original book is evidence of the continuing interest and importance of the work, but it also p…Read more
  •  135
    The mind-brain problem
    In Evian Gordon (ed.), Integrative Neuroscience, Harwood Academic Publishers. 2000.
    The problem of explaining the mind persists essentially unchanged today since the time of Plato and Aristotle. For the ancients, of course, it was not a question of the relation of mind to brain, though the question was fundamentally the same nonetheless. For Plato, the mind was conceived as distinct from the body and was posited in order to explain knowledge which transcends that available to the senses. For his successor, Aristotle, the mind was conceived as intimately related to the body as f…Read more
  •  20
  •  69
    Godel's theorem and the mind
    British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 33 (March): 41-52. 1982.
  •  16
    images. But clearly, it only begs the deeper questions
  •  280
    The relevance of cognitive science to teaching
    Journal of Cognitive Science 8 (2): 171-205. 2007.
    The Relevance of Cognitive Science to Teaching, Proceedings of the 6th International History, Philosophy & Science Teaching Conference (IHPST), Denver, Colorado, November 7-10, 2001. (PDF).
  •  84
    Thinking about thinking: Language, thought and introspection
    Language and Communication 22 (3): 353-373. 2002.
    I do not think that the world or the sciences would ever have suggested to me any philosophical problems. What has suggested philosophical problems to me is things which other philosophers have said about the world or the sciences. (G.E. Moore, 1942, p. 14)
  •  26
    Richard Jeffrey said that Newcomb’s Problem may be seen “as a rock on which... Bayesianism... must founder” and the problem has been almost universally conceived as reconciling the science-fictional features of the decision problem with a plausible causal analysis. Later, Jeffrey renounced his earlier position that accepted Newcomb problems as genuine decision problems, suggesting “Newcomb problems are like Escher’s famous staircase”. We may interpret this to mean that we know there can be no su…Read more
  •  36
    Minds, machines and self-reference
    Dialectica 38 (1): 17-34. 1984.
    SummaryJ.R. Lucas has argued that it follows from Godel's Theorem that the mind cannot be a machine or represented by any formal system. Although this notorious argument against the mechanism thesis has received considerable attention in the literature, it has not been decisively rebutted, even though mechanism is generally thought to be the only plausible view of the mind. In this paper I offer an analysis of Lucas's argument which shows that it derives its persuasiveness from a subtle confusio…Read more
  •  25
    In seeking to understand the extraordinary persistence and recalcitrance of the problems of intentionality, it is instructive to focus attention on one particular facet of the issue. The question of misrepresentation has been discussed recently as a puzzling aspect of the overall problem of the semantics of mental representation (Fodor 1984, 1994, Dretske 1994) and I propose to explore this issue as a loose thread which may be pulled to unravel the rest of the tangled ball
  •  128
    Descartes's diagonal deduction
    British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 34 (March): 13-36. 1983.
    I OFFER AN ANALYSIS OF DESCARTES'S COGITO WHICH IS RADICALLY NOVEL WHILE INCORPORATING MUCH AVAILABLE INSIGHT. BY ENLARGING FOCUS FROM THE DICTUM ITSELF TO THE REASONING OF DOUBT, DREAMING AND DEMON, I DEMONSTRATE A CLOSE PARALLEL TO THE LOGIC OF THE LIAR PARADOX. THIS HELPS TO EXPLAIN FAMILIAR PARADOXICAL FEATURES OF DESCARTES'S ARGUMENT. THE ACCOUNT PROVES TO BE TEXTUALLY ELEGANT AND, MOREOVER, HAS CONSIDERABLE INDEPENDENT PHILOSOPHICAL PLAUSIBILITY AS AN ACCOUNT OF MIND AND SELF.
  •  28
    Bloor's bluff: Behaviourism and the strong programme
    International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 5 (3). 1991.
    Abstract The accumulated case studies in the Sociology of Scientific Knowledge have been taken to establish the Strong Programme's thesis that beliefs have social causes in contradistinction to psychological ones. This externalism is essentially a commitment to the stimulus control of behaviour which was the principal tenet of orthodox Skinnerian Behaviorism. Offered as ?straight forward scientific hypotheses? these claims of social determination are asserted to be ?beyond dispute?. However, the…Read more
  •  28
    There's more to vision than meets the eye
    Trends in Cognitive Sciences 8 (7): 291-293. 2004.