•  85
    Philosophy and Connectionist Theory (edited book)
    with William Ramsey and D. M. Rumelhart
    Lawrence Erlbaum. 1991.
    The philosophy of cognitive science has recently become one of the most exciting and fastest growing domains of philosophical inquiry and analysis. Until the early 1980s, nearly all of the models developed treated cognitive processes -- like problem solving, language comprehension, memory, and higher visual processing -- as rule-governed symbol manipulation. However, this situation has changed dramatically over the last half dozen years. In that period there has been an enormous shift of attenti…Read more
  •  34
    The pretense debate
    with Joshua Tarzia
    Cognition 143 1-12. 2015.
  •  159
    Deconstructing the mind
    In Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, Oxford University Press, 1996. pp. 479-482. 1996.
    Over the last two decades, debates over the viability of commonsense psychology have been center stage in both cognitive science and the philosophy of mind. Eliminativists have argued that advances in cognitive science and neuroscience will ultimately justify a rejection of our "folk" theory of the mind, and of its ontology. In the first half of this book Stich, who was at one time a leading advocate of eliminativism, maintains that even if the sciences develop in the ways that eliminativists fo…Read more
  •  27
    Jackson’s Empirical Assumptions
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 62 (3): 637-643. 2001.
    Frank Jackson has given us an elegant and important book. It is, by a long shot, the most sophisticated defense of the use of conceptual analysis in philosophy that has ever been offered. But we also we find it a rather perplexing book, for we can’t quite figure out what Jackson thinks a conceptual analysis is. And until we get clearer on that, we’re not at all sure that conceptual analysis, as Jackson envisions it, is possible. The main reason for our perplexity is that Jackson seems to be maki…Read more
  •  154
    The 20 sup > th /sup > century has been a tumultuous time in psychology -- a century in which the discipline struggled with basic questions about its intellectual identity, but nonetheless managed to achieve spectacular growth and maturation. It’s not surprising, then, that psychology has attracted sustained philosophical attention and stimulated rich philosophical debate. Some of this debate was aimed at understanding, and sometimes criticizing, the assumptions, concepts and explanatory strateg…Read more
  •  343
    Do animals have beliefs?
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 57 (1): 15-28. 1979.
    This Article does not have an abstract
  •  31
    Is behaviorism vacuous?
    Behavioral and Brain Sciences 7 (4): 647. 1984.
  •  236
    Moral psychology: Empirical approaches
    with John Doris
    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2008.
    Moral psychology investigates human functioning in moral contexts, and asks how these results may impact debate in ethical theory. This work is necessarily interdisciplinary, drawing on both the empirical resources of the human sciences and the conceptual resources of philosophical ethics. The present article discusses several topics that illustrate this type of inquiry: thought experiments, responsibility, character, egoism v . altruism, and moral disagreement
  • This is the third volume of a three-volume set on The Innate Mind. The extent to which cognitive structures, processes, and contents are innate is one of the central questions concerning the nature of the mind, with important implications for debates throughout the human sciences. By bringing together the top nativist scholars in philosophy, psychology, and allied disciplines these volumes provide a comprehensive assessment of nativist thought and a definitive reference point for future nativist…Read more
  •  335
    Beliefs and subdoxastic states
    Philosophy of Science 45 (December): 499-518. 1978.
    It is argued that the intuitively sanctioned distinction between beliefs and non-belief states that play a role in the proximate causal history of beliefs is a distinction worth preserving in cognitive psychology. The intuitive distinction is argued to rest on a pair of features exhibited by beliefs but not by subdoxastic states. These are access to consciousness and inferential integration. Harman's view, which denies the distinction between beliefs and subdoxastic states, is discussed and crit…Read more
  •  327
    What is folk psychology?
    with R. Ravenscroft
    Cognition 50 447-68. 1994.
    For the last two decades a doctrine called ‘‘eliminative materialism’’ (or sometimes just ‘‘eliminativism’’) has been a major focus of discussion in the philosophy of mind. It is easy to understand why eliminativism has attracted so much attention, for it is hard to imagine a more radical and provocative doctrine. What eliminativism claims is that the intentional states and processes that are alluded to in our everyday descriptions and explanations of people’s mental lives and their actions are …Read more
  •  114
    The flight to reference is a widely-used strategy for resolving philosophical issues. The three steps in a flight to reference argument are: (1) offer a substantive account of the reference relation, (2) argue that a particular expression refers (or does not refer), and (3) draw a philosophical conclusion about something other than reference, like truth or ontology. It is our contention that whenever the flight to reference strategy is invoked, there is a crucial step that is left undefended, an…Read more
  •  21
    Naturalizing Epistemology: Quine, Simon and the Prospects for Pragmatism: Stephen Stich
    Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 34 1-17. 1993.
    In recent years there has been a great deal of discussion about the prospects of developing a ‘naturalized epistemology’, though different authors tend to interpret this label in quite different ways. One goal of this paper is to sketch three projects that might lay claim to the ‘naturalized epistemology’ label, and to argue that they are not all equally attractive. Indeed, I'll maintain that the first of the three—the one I'll attribute to Quine—is simply incoherent. There is no way we could ge…Read more
  •  105
    Two theories about the cognitive architecture underlying morality
    with Daniel Kelly
    In P. Carruthers, S. Stich & S. Laurence (eds.), The Innate Mind, Vol. III, Foundations and the Future, Oxford University Press. 2008.
    In this paper we compare two theories about the cognitive architecture underlying morality. One theory, proposed by Sripada and Stich (forthcoming), posits an interlocking set of innate mechanisms that internalize moral norms from the surrounding community and generate intrinsic motivation to comply with these norms and to punish violators. The other theory, which we call the M/C model was suggested by the widely discussed and influential work of Elliott Turiel, Larry Nucci and others on the “mo…Read more
  •  254
    Evolution, culture, and the irrationality of the emotions
    In D. Evans & Pierre Cruse (eds.), Emotion, Evolution, and Rationality, Oxford University Press. 2004.
    For about 2500 years, from Plato’s time until the closing decades of the 20th century, the dominant view was that the emotions are quite distinct from the processes of rational thinking and decision making, and are often a major impediment to those processes. But in recent years this orthodoxy has been challenged in a number of ways. Damasio (1994) has made a forceful case that the traditional view, which he has dubbed _Descartes’ Error_, is quite wrong, because emotions play a fundamental role …Read more
  •  49
    Logical form and natural language
    Philosophical Studies 28 (6). 1975.
    The central thesis of the article is that there are two quite distinct concepts of logical form. Theories of logical form employing one of these concepts are different both in method of justification and in philosophical and psychological implications from theories employing the other concept
  •  2
    The aim of this paper is to demonstrate a prima facie tension between our commonsense conception of ourselves as thinkers and the connectionist programme for modelling cognitive processes. The language of thought hypothesis plays a pivotal role. The connectionist paradigm is opposed to the language of thought; and there is an argument for the language of thought that draws on features of the commonsense scheme of thoughts, concepts, and inference. Most of the paper (Sections 3-7) is taken up wit…Read more
  • This is the third of a three-volume set on The Innate Mind providing a comprehensive assessment of nativist thought and definitive reference point for future inquiry. Together these volumes point the way toward a synthesis that provides a powerful picture of our minds and their place in the natural order.
  •  82
    Is Morality an Elegant Machine or a Kludge?
    Journal of Cognition and Culture 6 (1-2): 181-189. 2006.
    In a passage in A Theory of Justice, which has become increasingly influential in recent years, John Rawls (1971) noted an analogy between moral phi- losophy and grammar. Moral philosophy, or at least the first stage of moral philosophy, Rawls maintained, can be thought of as the attempt to describe our moral capacity – the capacity which underlies “the poten- tially infinite number and variety of [moral] judgments we are prepared..
  •  45
    The role of psychology in the study of culture
    with Daniel Kelly, Edouard Machery, Ron Mallon, and Kelby Mason
    Behavioral and Brain Sciences 29 (4): 355-355. 2006.
    Although we are enthusiastic about a Darwinian approach to culture, we argue that the overview presented in the target article does not sufficiently emphasize the crucial explanatory role that psychology plays in the study of culture. We use a number of examples to illustrate the variety of ways by which appeal to psychological factors can help explain cultural phenomena
  •  10
    Some Questions About The Evolution ofMorality (review)
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 77 (1): 228-236. 2008.
  •  21
    This volume collects the best and most influential essays on knowledge, rationality and morality that Stephen Stich has published in the last 40 years. The volume includes a new introductory essay that offers an overview of the papers and traces the history of how they emerged