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  1. The Character Gap: How Good Are We?Christian B. Miller - 2017 - New York: Oxford University Press.
    We like to think of ourselves, our friends, and our families as decent people. We may not be saints, but we are still honest, relatively kind, and mostly trustworthy. Miller argues here that we are badly mistaken in thinking this. Hundreds of recent studies in psychology tell a different story: that we all have serious character flaws that prevent us from being as good as we think we are - and that we do not even recognize that these flaws exist. (...)
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  • Mindshaping: A New Framework for Understanding Human Social Cognition.Tadeusz Wies aw Zawidzki - 2013 - Bradford.
    Argues that the key distinction between human and nonhuman social cognition consists in our complex, diverse and flexible capacities to shape each other's minds in ways that make them easier to interpret.
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  • Do Apes Read Minds?: Toward a New Folk Psychology.Kristin Andrews - 2012 - MIT Press.
    Andrews argues for a pluralistic folk psychology that employs different kinds of practices and different kinds of cognitive tools (including personality trait attribution, stereotype activation, inductive reasoning about past behavior, and ...
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  • Moral Character: An Empirical Theory.Christian B. Miller - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
    The goal of this book is to develop a new framework for thinking about what moral character looks like today. My central claim will be that most people have moral character traits, but at the same time they do not have either the traditional  ...
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  • Character as Moral Fiction.Mark Alfano - 2013 - Cambridge University Press.
    Everyone wants to be virtuous, but recent psychological investigations suggest that this may not be possible. Mark Alfano challenges this theory and asks, not whether character is empirically adequate, but what characters human beings could have and develop. Although psychology suggests that most people do not have robust character traits such as courage, honesty and open-mindedness, Alfano argues that we have reason to attribute these virtues to people because such attributions function as self-fulfilling prophecies - children become more studious if (...)
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  • Virtue as Social Intelligence: An Empirically Grounded Theory.Nancy E. Snow - 2009 - Routledge.
    _Virtue as Social Intelligence: An Empirically Grounded Theory_ takes on the claims of philosophical situationism, the ethical theory that is skeptical about the possibility of human virtue. Influenced by social psychological studies, philosophical situationists argue that human personality is too fluid and fragmented to support a stable set of virtues. They claim that virtue cannot be grounded in empirical psychology. This book argues otherwise. Drawing on the work of psychologists Walter Mischel and Yuichi Shoda, Nancy E. Snow argues that the (...)
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  • How the Mind Explains Behavior: Folk Explanations, Meaning, and Social Interaction.Bertram F. Malle - 2004 - MIT Press.
    In this provocative monograph, Bertram Malle describes behavior explanations as having a dual nature -- as being both cognitive and social acts -- and proposes...
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  • Lack of Character: Personality and Moral Behavior.John M. Doris - 2002 - Cambridge University Press.
    This book is a provocative contribution to contemporary ethical theory challenging foundational conceptions of character that date back to Aristotle. John Doris draws on behavioral science, especially social psychology, to argue that we misattribute the causes of behavior to personality traits and other fixed aspects of character rather than to the situational context. More often than not it is the situation not the nature of the personality that really counts. The author elaborates the philosophical consequences of this research for a (...)
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  • Theories of Theories of Mind.Peter Carruthers & Peter K. Smith (eds.) - 1996 - Cambridge University Press.
    Theories of Theories of Mind brings together contributions by a distinguished international team of philosophers, psychologists, and primatologists, who between them address such questions as: what is it to understand the thoughts, feelings, and intentions of other people? How does such an understanding develop in the normal child? Why, unusually, does it fail to develop? And is any such mentalistic understanding shared by members of other species? The volume's four parts together offer a state of the art survey of the (...)
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  • A Theory of Jerks and Other Philosophical Misadventures.Eric Schwitzgebel - 2019 - Cambridge, MA, USA: MIT Press.
    A collection of quirky, entertaining, and reader-friendly short pieces on philosophical topics that range from a theory of jerks to the ethics of ethicists. Have you ever wondered about why some people are jerks? Asked whether your driverless car should kill you so that others may live? Found a robot adorable? Considered the ethics of professional ethicists? Reflected on the philosophy of hair? In this engaging, entertaining, and enlightening book, Eric Schwitzgebel turns a philosopher's eye on these and other burning (...)
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  • How We Understand Others: Philosophy and Social Cognition.Shannon Spaulding - 2018 - New York, NY, USA: Routledge.
    In our everyday social interactions, we try to make sense of what people are thinking, why they act as they do, and what they are likely to do next. This process is called mindreading. Mindreading, Shannon Spaulding argues in this book, is central to our ability to understand and interact with others. Philosophers and cognitive scientists have converged on the idea that mindreading involves theorizing about and simulating others’ mental states. She argues that this view of mindreading is limiting and (...)
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  • Exemplarist Moral Theory.Linda Trinkaus Zagzebski - 2017 - Oup Usa.
    In Exemplarist Moral Theory of Linda Zagzebski presents an original moral theory based on direct reference to exemplars of goodness, whom we identify through the emotion of admiration. Using examples of heroes, saints, and sages, she shows how narratives of exemplars and empirical work on the most admirable persons can be incorporated into the theory to serve both theoretical and practical purposes.
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  • The Wheel of Virtue: Art, Literature, and Moral Knowledge.Noel Carroll - 2002 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 60 (1):3–26.
    In this essay, then, I would like to address what I believe are the most compelling epistemic arguments against the notion that literature (and art more broadly) can function as an instrument of education and a source of knowledge.
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  • How to Construct a Minimal Theory of Mind.Stephen A. Butterfill & Ian A. Apperly - 2013 - Mind and Language 28 (5):606-637.
    What could someone represent that would enable her to track, at least within limits, others' perceptions, knowledge states and beliefs including false beliefs? An obvious possibility is that she might represent these very attitudes as such. It is sometimes tacitly or explicitly assumed that this is the only possible answer. However, we argue that several recent discoveries in developmental, cognitive, and comparative psychology indicate the need for other, less obvious possibilities. Our aim is to meet this need by describing the (...)
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  • Mindreading Beyond Belief: A More Comprehensive Conception of How We Understand Others.Shannon Spaulding - 2018 - Philosophy Compass 13 (11):e12526.
    Traditional theories of mindreading tend to focus exclusively on attributing beliefs and desires to other agents. The literature emphasizes belief attribution in particular, with numerous debates over when children develop the concept of belief, how neurotypical adult humans attribute beliefs to others, whether non-human animals have the concept of belief, etc. I describe a growing school of thought that the heavy focus on belief leaves traditional theories of mindreading unable to account for the complexity, diversity, and messiness of ordinary social (...)
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  • Folk Psychology as Simulation.Robert M. Gordon - 1986 - Mind and Language 1 (2):158-71.
  • Telling More Than We Can Know About Intentional Action.Chandra Sekhar Sripada & Sara Konrath - 2011 - Mind and Language 26 (3):353-380.
    Recently, a number of philosophers have advanced a surprising conclusion: people's judgments about whether an agent brought about an outcome intentionally are pervasively influenced by normative considerations. In this paper, we investigate the ‘Chairman case’, an influential case from this literature and disagree with this conclusion. Using a statistical method called structural path modeling, we show that people's attributions of intentional action to an agent are driven not by normative assessments, but rather by attributions of underlying values and characterological dispositions (...)
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  • Mindreading in Infancy.Peter Carruthers - 2013 - Mind and Language 28 (2):141-172.
    Various dichotomies have been proposed to characterize the nature and development of human mindreading capacities, especially in light of recent evidence of mindreading in infants aged 7 to 18 months. This article will examine these suggestions, arguing that none is currently supported by the evidence. Rather, the data support a modular account of the domain-specific component of basic mindreading capacities. This core component is present in infants from a very young age and does not alter fundamentally thereafter. What alters with (...)
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  • Why the Child’s Theory of Mind Really Is a Theory.Alison Gopnik & Henry M. Wellman - 1992 - Mind and Language 7 (1-2):145-71.
  • Various Ways to Understand Other Minds: Towards a Pluralistic Approach to the Explanation of Social Understanding.Anika Fiebich & Max Coltheart - 2015 - Mind and Language 30 (3):235-258.
    In this article, we propose a pluralistic approach to the explanation of social understanding that integrates literature from social psychology with the theory of mind debate. Social understanding in everyday life is achieved in various ways. As a rule of thumb we propose that individuals make use of whatever procedure is cognitively least demanding to them in a given context. Aside from theory and simulation, associations of behaviors with familiar agents play a crucial role in social understanding. This role has (...)
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  • Moral Reputation: An Evolutionary and Cognitive Perspective.Dan Sperber & Nicolas Baumard - 2012 - Mind and Language 27 (5):495-518.
    From an evolutionary point of view, the function of moral behaviour may be to secure a good reputation as a co-operator. The best way to do so may be to obey genuine moral motivations. Still, one's moral reputation maybe something too important to be entrusted just to one's moral sense. A robust concern for one's reputation is likely to have evolved too. Here we explore some of the complex relationships between morality and reputation both from an evolutionary and a cognitive (...)
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  • How to Interpret Infant Socio-Cognitive Competence.Tadeusz Wieslaw Zawidzki - 2011 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 2 (3):483-497.
    I review recent evidence that very young, pre-verbal infants attribute belief-like states when anticipating the behavior of others. This evidence is drawn from infant performance on non-verbal false belief tasks. I argue that, contrary to typical interpretations, such evidence does not show that infants attribute belief-like states. Rather, it shows that infants apply an enhanced version of what Gergely ( 2011 ) calls the “teleological stance” to brief bouts of behavior. This requires them to parse behavioral sequences into goals and (...)
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  • Mindreading, Mindshaping, and Evolution.Matteo Mameli - 2001 - Biology and Philosophy 16 (5):595-626.
    I present and apply some powerful tools for studying human evolution and the impact of cultural resources on it. The tools in question are a theory of niche construction and a theory about the evolutionary significance of extragenetic (and, in particular, of psychological and social) inheritance. These tools are used to show how culturally transmitted resources can be recruited by development and become generatively entrenched. The case study is constituted by those culturally transmitted items that social psychologists call ‘expectancies’. Expectancy (...)
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  • Do Humans Have Two Systems to Track Beliefs and Belief-Like States?Stephen Andrew Butterfill & Ian A. Apperly - 2009 - Psychological Review 116 (4):953-970.
    The lack of consensus on how to characterize humans’ capacity for belief reasoning has been brought into sharp focus by recent research. Children fail critical tests of belief reasoning before 3 to 4 years (Wellman, Cross, & Watson, 2001; Wimmer & Perner, 1983), yet infants apparently pass false belief tasks at 13 or 15 months (Onishi & Baillargeon, 2005; Surian, Caldi, & Sperber, 2007). Non-human animals also fail critical tests of belief reasoning but can show very complex social behaviour (e.g., (...)
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  • The Function of Folk Psychology: Mind Reading or Mind Shaping?Tadeusz W. Zawidzki - 2008 - Philosophical Explorations 11 (3):193 – 210.
    I argue for two claims. First I argue against the consensus view that accurate behavioral prediction based on accurate representation of cognitive states, i.e. mind reading , is the sustaining function of propositional attitude ascription. This practice cannot have been selected in evolution and cannot persist, in virtue of its predictive utility, because there are principled reasons why it is inadequate as a tool for behavioral prediction. Second I give reasons that favor an alternative account of the sustaining function of (...)
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  • A Mutualistic Approach to Morality: The Evolution of Fairness by Partner Choice.Nicolas Baumard, Jean-Baptiste André & Dan Sperber - 2013 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 36 (1):59-122.
    What makes humans moral beings? This question can be understood either as a proximate question or as an ultimate question. The question is about the mental and social mechanisms that produce moral judgments and interactions, and has been investigated by psychologists and social scientists. The question is about the fitness consequences that explain why humans have morality, and has been discussed by evolutionary biologists in the context of the evolution of cooperation. Our goal here is to contribute to a fruitful (...)
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  • Character and Theory of Mind: An Integrative Approach.Evan Westra - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (5):1217-1241.
    Traditionally, theories of mindreading have focused on the representation of beliefs and desires. However, decades of social psychology and social neuroscience have shown that, in addition to reasoning about beliefs and desires, human beings also use representations of character traits to predict and interpret behavior. While a few recent accounts have attempted to accommodate these findings, they have not succeeded in explaining the relation between trait attribution and belief-desire reasoning. On my account, character-trait attribution is part of a hierarchical system (...)
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  • Spontaneous Mindreading: A Problem for the Two-Systems Account.Evan Westra - 2017 - Synthese 194 (11):4559-4581.
    According to the two-systems account of mindreading, our mature perspective-taking abilities are subserved by two distinct mindreading systems: a fast but inflexible, “implicit” system, and a flexible but slow “explicit” one. However, the currently available evidence on adult perspective-taking does not support this account. Specifically, both Level-1 and Level-2 perspective-taking show a combination of efficiency and flexibility that is deeply inconsistent with the two-systems architecture. This inconsistency also turns out to have serious consequences for the two-systems framework as a whole, (...)
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  • The Complementarity of Mindshaping and Mindreading.Uwe Peters - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 18 (3):533-549.
    Why do we engage in folk psychology, that is, why do we think about and ascribe propositional attitudes such as beliefs, desires, intentions etc. to people? On the standard view, folk psychology is primarily for mindreading, for detecting mental states and explaining and/or predicting people’s behaviour in terms of them. In contrast, McGeer (1996, 2007, 2015), and Zawidzki (2008, 2013) maintain that folk psychology is not primarily for mindreading but for mindshaping, that is, for moulding people’s behavior and minds (e.g., (...)
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  • The Essential Moral Self.Nina Strohminger & Shaun Nichols - 2014 - Cognition 131 (1):159-171.
  • Weighing Outcome Vs. Intent Across Societies: How Cultural Models of Mind Shape Moral Reasoning.Rita Anne McNamara, Aiyana K. Willard, Ara Norenzayan & Joseph Henrich - 2019 - Cognition 182:95-108.
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  • Children's Use of Trait Information in Understanding Verbal Irony.Penny M. Pexman, Melanie Glenwright, Suzanne Hala, Stacey L. Kowbel & Sara Jungen - 2006 - Metaphor and Symbol 21 (1):39-60.
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  • Infants Selectively Encode the Goal Object of an Actor's Reach.A. Woodward - 1998 - Cognition 69 (1):1-34.
  • Mental State Attributions and the Side-Effect Effect.Chandra Sripada - 2012 - Journal of Experimental Social Psychology 48 (1):232-238.
    The side-effect effect, in which an agent who does not speci␣cally intend an outcome is seen as having brought it about intentionally, is thought to show that moral factors inappropriately bias judgments of intentionality, and to challenge standard mental state models of intentionality judgments. This study used matched vignettes to dissociate a number of moral factors and mental states. Results support the view that mental states, and not moral factors, explain the side-effect effect. However, the critical mental states appear not (...)
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  • Modeling the Predictive Social Mind.Diana I. Tamir & Mark A. Thornton - 2018 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 22 (3):201-212.
  • Flexible Goal Attribution in Early Mindreading.John Michael & Wayne Christensen - 2016 - Psychological Review 123 (2):219-227.
  • Theories of Theories of Mind.Peter Carruthers & Peter K. Smith - 1999 - Philosophical Quarterly 49 (194):115-119.
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  • Mindreading in Adults: Evaluating Two-Systems Views.Peter Carruthers - 2017 - Synthese 194 (3):673-688.
    A number of convergent recent findings with adults have been interpreted as evidence of the existence of two distinct systems for mindreading that draw on separate conceptual resources: one that is fast, automatic, and inflexible; and one that is slower, controlled, and flexible. The present article argues that these findings admit of a more parsimonious explanation. This is that there is a single set of concepts made available by a mindreading system that operates automatically where it can, but which frequently (...)
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  • Preschool Children's Use of Trait Labels to Make Inductive Inferences.Gail D. Heyman & Susan A. Gelman - 2000 - Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 77:1-19.
     
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  • Folk Psychology as Narrative Practice.Daniel D. Hutto - 2009 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 16 (6-8):6 - 8.
    There has been a long-standing interest in the putative roles that various so-called ‘theory of mind’ abilities might play in enabling us to understand and enjoy narratives. Of late, as our understanding of the complexity and diversity of everyday psychological capacities has become more nuanced and variegated, new possibilities have been articulated: (i) that our capacity for a sophisticated, everyday understanding of actions in terms of reason (our folk psychology) may itself be best characterized as a kind of narrative practice (...)
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  • A Cognitive Neurobiological Account of Deception: Evidence From Functional Neuroimaging.Sean Spence - 2006 - In Semir Zeki & Oliver Goodenough (eds.), Law and the Brain. Oxford University Press.
  • The Regulative Dimension of Folk Psychology.Victoria McGeer - 2007 - In Daniel D. Hutto & Matthew Ratcliffe (eds.), Folk Psychology Re-Assessed. Kluwer/Springer Press. pp. 137--156.