The mental simulation debate: A progress report

In Peter Carruthers & Peter K. Smith (eds.), Theories of Theories of Mind. Cambridge University Press. pp. 119--137 (1996)
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Abstract

1. Introduction For philosophers, the current phase of the debate with which this volume is concerned can be taken to have begun in 1986, when Jane Heal and Robert Gordon published their seminal papers (Heal, 1986; Gordon, 1986; though see also, for example, Stich, 1981; Dennett, 1981). They raised a dissenting voice against what was becoming a philosophical orthodoxy: that our everyday, or folk, understanding of the mind should be thought of as theoretical. In opposition to this picture, Gordon and Heal argued that we are not theorists but simulators. For psychologists, the debate had begun somewhat earlier when Heider (1958) produced his work on lay psychology; and in more recent times the psychological debate had continued in developmental psychology and in work on animal cognition

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