Rules and representations

Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3 (1):1-15 (1980)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

The book from which these sections are excerpted is concerned with the prospects for assimilating the study of human intelligence and its products to the natural sciences through the investigation of cognitive structures, understood as systems of rules and representations that can be regarded as “mental organs.” These mental structui′es serve as the vehicles for the exercise of various capacities. They develop in the mind on the basis of an innate endowment that permits the growth of rich and highly articulated structures along an intrinsically determined course under the triggering and partially shaping effect of experience, which fixes parameters in an intricate system of predetermined form. It is argued that the mind is modular in character, with a diversity of cognitive structures, each with its specific properties arid principles. Knowledge of language, of the behavior of objects, and much else crucially involves these mental structures, and is thus not characterizable in terms of capacities, dispositions, or practical abilities, nor is it necessarily grounded in experience in the standard sense of this term.Various types of knowledge and modes of knowledge acquisition are discussed in these terms. Some of the properties of the language faculty are investigated. The basic cognitive relation is “knowing a grammar”; knowledge of language is derivative and, correspondingly, raises further problems. Language as commonly understood is not a unitary phenomenon but involves a number of interacting systems: the “computational” system of grammar, which provides the representations of sound and meaning that permit a rich range of expressive potential, is distinct from a conceptual system with its own properties; knowledge of language must be distinguished from knowledge of how to use a language; and the various systems that enter into the knowledge and use of language must be further analyzed into their specific subcomponents.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 94,452

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Rules and representations.Noam A. Chomsky - 1980 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3 (127):1-61.
Rules and representations.Noam Chomsky (ed.) - 1980 - New York: Columbia University Press.
Rules and Representations. [REVIEW]L. J. - 1981 - Review of Metaphysics 34 (3):603-604.
What Happens to Accounts of Mind-Brain Relations If We Forego An Architecture of Rules and Representations?.William Bechtel - 1986 - PSA Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1986 (1):157-171.
Noam Chomsky: Rules and Representations.Tilman Borsche - 1982 - Philosophische Rundschau 29:125.
Human and computer rules and representations are not equivalent.Stephen Grossberg - 1980 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3 (1):136-138.
Rules and Representations by Noam Chomsky. [REVIEW]Colin McGinn - 1981 - Journal of Philosophy 78 (5):288-298.
Rules and Representations by Noam Chomsky. [REVIEW]Colin McGinn - 1981 - Journal of Philosophy 78 (5):288-298.

Analytics

Added to PP
2016-02-04

Downloads
211 (#99,089)

6 months
34 (#119,698)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Citations of this work

Rules and representations.Noam Chomsky - 1980 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3 (1):1-15.
On the proper treatment of connectionism.Paul Smolensky - 1988 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 11 (1):1-23.
Natural language and natural selection.Steven Pinker & Paul Bloom - 1990 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 13 (4):707-27.
Talking About: A Response to Bowker, Keiser, Michaelson.Elmar Unnsteinsson - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
Perceptual Pluralism.Jake Quilty-Dunn - 2019 - Noûs 54 (4):807-838.

View all 1133 citations / Add more citations

References found in this work

Word and Object.Willard Van Orman Quine - 1960 - Cambridge, MA, USA: MIT Press.
Aspects of the Theory of Syntax.Noam Chomsky - 1965 - Cambridge, MA, USA: MIT Press.
Speech Acts: An Essay in the Philosophy of Language.John Rogers Searle - 1969 - Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Brainstorms: Philosophical Essays on Mind and Psychology.Daniel C. Dennett (ed.) - 1978 - Cambridge, Massachusetts: Bradford Books.

View all 75 references / Add more references