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In recent years Jaegwon Kim has propounded and elaborated an influential theory of events. He takes an event to be the exemplification of an empirical property (or n-adic attribute) by a concrete object (or several concrete objects) at a time. He also has proposed and endorsed a version of the “Humean” tradition concerning causation: the view that causal relations between concrete events depend upon general "covering laws." But although his explication of the covering-law conception of causation seems quite natural within the framework of his theory, it gives rise to a serious problem: in numerous garden-variety instances of causation, the Humean conditions (as Kim specifies them) are not satisfied. In this paper I shall suggest a way to modify Kim's theory of events in order to reconcile it with his treatment of causality.
How does mind fit into nature? Philosophy has long been concerned with this question. No contemporary philosopher has done more to clarify it than Jaegwon Kim, a distinguished analytic philosopher specializing in metaphysics and philosophy of mind. With new contributions from an outstanding line-up of eminent scholars, this volume focuses on issues raised in Kim's work. The chapters cluster around two themes: first, exclusion, supervenience, and reduction, with attention to the causal exclusion argument for which Kim is widely celebrated; and second, phenomenal consciousness and qualia, with attention to the prospects for a functionalist account of the mental. This volume is sure to become a major focus of attention and research in the disciplines of metaphysics and philosophy of mind.
This chapter provides a detailed assessment in philosophy of the Big Five approach, specifically on the question of whether it provides empirical support for the widespread possession of the moral and epistemic virtues. It briefly reviews some of the recent discussions in philosophy concerning the empirical adequacy of the virtues. The chapter also provides an overview of the Big Five approach in personality psychology. It focuses on three important reasons for why the Big Five taxonomy, however well supported it might be, does not offer any empirical support for the widespread possession of the traditional moral and epistemic virtues. Three important concerns are: Big Five traits are only summary labels; problems for the leading causal trait model of the Big Five; and Big Five and responsibility. The labeling approach can apply to the facets which use virtue concepts.
In the first post World War II identity theories (e.g., Place , Smart ), mind-brain identities were held to be contingent. However, in work beginning in the late 1960s, Saul Kripke (, ) convinced the philosophical community that true identity statements involving names and natural kind terms are necessarily true and, furthermore, that many such necessary identities can only be known a posteriori. Kripke also offered an explanation of the a posteriori nature of ordinary theoretical identities such as that water = H2O. We identify the kinds and substances involved in theoretical identities by certain of their contingent properties. What we discover when we discover a theoretical identity is the underlying nature of the kind that we identify by those contingent properties.
Now, of course, it was being a posteriori, not being contingent, that mattered to the identity theorists anyway, so the necessity of identity is not, in itself, damaging to mind-brain identity theories. However, Kripke also argued persuasively that the alleged mind-brain identities could not be treated in the same way as ordinary theoretical identities. We “identify” pain by feeling it, and surely how it feels is an essential property of pain, not a contingent property. Thus, a mind-body identity theory must provide a different explanation of why its identities are a posteriori.
A new wave of materialists has appeared on the scene with a new strategy for explaining the a posteriori nature of its alleged identities. The strategy is to locate the explanation for the a posteriori nature of mind-body identities, not on the side of the world, but on the side of the mind – in different ways of thinking about or imagining, or in different concepts.
What van Gelder calls the dynamical hypothesis is only a
special case of what we here dub the general dynamical hypothesis.
His terminology makes it easy to overlook important alternative
dynamical approaches in cognitive science. Connectionist models
typically conform to the general dynamical hypothesis, but not to
David Marr (1982) provided an influential account of levels of description in classical cognitive science. In this paper we contrast Marr'ent with some alternatives that are suggested by the recent emergence of connectionism. Marr's account is interesting and important both because of the levels of description it distinguishes, and because of the way his presentation reflects some of the most basic, foundational, assumptions of classical AI-style cognitive science (classicism, as we will call it henceforth). Thus, by focusing on levels of description, one can sharpen foundational differences between classicism and potential non-classical conceptions of mentality that might emerge under the rubric of connectionism.
I propose a way of formulating scientific laws and magnitude attributions which eliminates ontological commitment to mathematical entities. I argue that science only requires quantitative sentences as thus formulated, and hence that we ought to deny the existence of sets and numbers. I argue that my approach cannot plausibly be extended to the concrete “theoretical” entities of science.
I invoke the conceptual machinery of contemporary possible-world semantics to provide an account of the metaphysical status of “bridge laws” in intertheoretic reductions. I argue that although bridge laws are not definitions, and although they do not necessarily reflect attribute-identities, they are supervenient. I.e., they are true in all possible worlds in which the reducing theory is true.
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