•  106
    Grades of explanation in cognitive science
    Synthese 114 (3): 463-495. 1998.
      I sketch an explanatory framework that fits a variety of contemporary research programs in cognitive science. I then investigate the scope and the implications of this framework. The framework emphasizes (a) the explanatory role played by the semantic content of cognitive representations, and (b) the important mechanistic, non-intentional dimension of cognitive explanations. I show how both of these features are present simultaneously in certain varieties of cognitive explanation. I also consi…Read more
  •  104
    Explanation and evaluation in cognitive science
    Philosophy of Science 62 (2): 261-82. 1995.
    With some regularity, cognitive scientists seem to introduce cognitive values into their explanations. After identifying examples of this practice, I sketch an account of psychological explanation that, under certain conditions, legitimizes value-laden cognitive explanations in which evaluative claims appear in the explanandum. I then present and discuss two applications of the proposed account in order to show its viability and explore its consequences.
  •  93
    The reductionist ideal in cognitive psychology
    Synthese 85 (November): 279-314. 1990.
      I offer support for the view that physicalist theories of cognition don't reduce to neurophysiological theories. On my view, the mind-brain relationship is to be explained in terms of evolutionary forces, some of which tug in the direction of a reductionistic mind-brain relationship, and some of which which tug in the opposite direction. This theory of forces makes possible an anti-reductionist account of the cognitive mind-brain relationship which avoids psychophysical anomalism. This theory …Read more
  •  71
    The indeterminacy of color vision
    Synthese 106 (2): 167-203. 1996.
      A critical survey of recent work on the ontological status of colors supports the conclusion that, while some accounts of color can plausibly be dismissed, no single account can yet be endorsed. Among the remaining options are certain forms of color realism according which familiar colors are instantiated by objects in our extra-cranial visual environment. Also still an option is color anti-realism, the view that familiar colors are, at best, biologically adaptive fictions, instantiated nowher…Read more
  •  22
    A new inverted spectrum thought experiment
    Philosophical Studies 175 (8): 1963-1983. 2018.
    A version of the inverted spectrum thought experiment that disconfirms functionalism for the case of humans’ color experiences has typically been thought to require a certain kind of balancing act. What one needs, it has typically been thought, is a mapping of color experiences onto other color experiences that preserves the similarity and difference relationships among those experiences and the aspects of perceived colors underlying those similarities and differences. However, there are good re…Read more
  •  21
    Colors and Stuff: Exploring the Visual Representation of Color
    Philosophia 45 (3): 1283-1298. 2017.
    It is standard to suppose that, whether or not they are actually instantiated in our environment, colors are properties. Presumably those who are convinced of this thesis are convinced because they think that’s how we see colors--how visual experience represents them. I argue, in contrast, that there are cases of illusory color perception in which it is more plausible to suppose colors are represented as kinds of stuff or substance rather than as properties. I then show how to extend this result…Read more
  •  18
    Psychologism, folk psychology and one's own case
    Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 17 (2). 1987.
  •  7
    Non-Cartesian Explanations Meet the Problem of Mental Causation
    Southern Journal of Philosophy 33 (2): 221-241. 1995.