Philosophical Psychology 31 (1):1-24 (2018)

Jonny Lee
University of Murcia
The battle over the proper place of mental representation in cognitive science is often portrayed as a clash between realism and eliminativism. But this simple dichotomy belies the variety of different ontological positions available. This article investigates the various stances that one can adopt toward the ontology of mental representation, and in so doing, shows that eliminativism is in fact best understood as two distinct positions: a posteriori eliminativism and a priori eliminativism. Furthermore, I show that a priori eliminativism faces two crippling challenges. I argue that once we put a priori eliminativism aside, determining the ultimate ontological status of representation can be postponed while we assess its utility across different domains of cognitive science—something all remaining positions can agree on.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Reprint years 2017, 2018
DOI 10.1080/09515089.2017.1362550
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 70,265
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Real Patterns.Daniel C. Dennett - 1991 - Journal of Philosophy 88 (1):27-51.
The Language of Thought.J. A. Fodor - 1978 - Critica 10 (28):140-143.
The Content of Perceptual Experience.John McDowell - 1994 - Philosopical Quarterly 44 (175):190-205.
The Content of Perceptual Experience.John McDowell - 1994 - Philosophical Quarterly 44 (175):190.

View all 18 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Eliminativism and Gunk.Jiri Benovsky - 2016 - Teorema: International Journal of Philosophy (1):59-66.
Conceptual Fragmentation and the Rise of Eliminativism.Henry Taylor & Peter Vickers - 2017 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 7 (1):17-40.
Can Psychiatry Refurnish the Mind?Dominic Murphy - 2017 - Philosophical Explorations 20 (2):160-174.
Beyond Eliminativism.Andy Clark - 1989 - Mind and Language 4 (4):251-79.
Functionalism, the Absent Qualia Objection and Eliminativism.Edward Wilson Averill - 1990 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 28 (4):449-67.
Fictionalism and the Folk.Adam Toon - 2016 - The Monist 99 (3):280-295.
The Plurality of Concepts.Daniel Aaron Weiskopf - 2009 - Synthese 169 (1):145-173.
Transcendental Arguments Against Eliminativism.Robert Lockie - 2003 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 54 (4):569-589.
Ramsey on Eliminativism and Self‐Refutation.Victor Reppert - 1991 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 34 (4):499-508.


Added to PP index

Total views
39 ( #291,174 of 2,507,715 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #416,820 of 2,507,715 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes