Recent years have seen numerous sociological disagreements devolve into heated debates, with scholars openly accusing their peers of being both empirically wrong and morally misguided. While social scientists routinely reflect on the ethical implications of certain research assumptions and data collection methods, the sociology of knowledge production has said little about how moral debates over scholarship shape subsequent research trajectories. Drawing on the new French pragmatic sociology, this article examines how sociologists respond to criticisms of the moral worth of their (...) research. The article outlines three typical responses: (1) accepting the criticism and changing direction completely; (2) accepting the criticism but changing discursive framing to incorporate existing research without being subject to critique; and (3) navigating through the debate by devising new research directions that do not trigger such criticism. To demonstrate, the article looks at how sociologists of religion responded, in their published scholarship, to criticisms of secularization theory as depreciating religious people and spiritual experience. Across the responses, we show that sociologists have included moral considerations in their empirical investigations, and have switched among several diverse moral justifications to address—and also avoid—criticism. We conclude by demonstrating that this model can be extended to other domains of sociological inquiry, including the study of gender-based wage inequality and methodological nationalism. The article highlights the importance of mapping the moral frameworks sociologists use for the sociology of knowledge and the sociology of morality. (shrink)
Kaplan and Craver :601–627, 2011) and Piccinini and Craver :283–311, 2011) argue that only mechanistic explanations of cognition are genuine causal explanations, because only evidence of mechanisms reveals the causal structure of cognition. I first argue that this claim is grounded in a commitment to the mechanistic account of causality, which cannot be endorsed by a defender of causal-nonmechanistic explanations. Then, I defend the epistemic theory of causality, which holds that causal explanations are not genuine to the extent that they (...) reveal mechanistic causal structure, but, rather, to the extent that they have evidential support and yield successful prediction, explanation, and control inferences. Finally, I enact an epistemic unification of causal explanation in cognitive science, according to which both mechanistic and nonmechanistic explanations of cognition can be genuine causal explanations. (shrink)
Objects of Metaphor puts forward a philosophical account of metaphor radically different from those currently on offer. Powerful and flexible enough to cope with the syntactic complexity typical of genuine metaphor, it offers novel conceptions of the relationship between simile and metaphor, the notion of dead metaphor, and the idea of metaphor as a robust theoretic kind. Without denying that metaphor can sometimes be merely ornamental, Guttenplan justifies the view of metaphor as fundamental to language and the study of language. (...) His book will be of great interest not only to philosophers in this field, but also to those working across psychology and linguistics. (shrink)
Machery and Weiskopf argue that the kind concept is a natural kind if and only if it plays an explanatory role in cognitive scientific explanations. In this paper, we argue against this explanationist approach to determining the natural kind-hood of concept. We first demonstrate that hybrid, pluralist, and eliminativist theories of concepts afford the kind concept different explanatory roles. Then, we argue that we cannot decide between hybrid, pluralist, and eliminativist theories of concepts, because each endorses a different, but equally (...) viable, specification of the explananda of cognitive science. It follows that an explanationist approach to determining the natural kind-hood of concept fails, because there is no consensus about whether or not concept should be afforded an explanatory role in our best cognitive scientific explanations. We conclude by considering what our critique of explanationism could imply for further discussions about the explanatory role of concepts in cognitive science. (shrink)
Some philosophers argue that we should eschew cross-explanatory integrations of mechanistic, dynamicist, and psychological explanations in cognitive science, because, unlike integrations of mechanistic explanations, they do not deliver genuine, cognitive scientific explanations. Here I challenge this claim by comparing the theoretical virtues of both kinds of explanatory integrations. I first identify two theoretical virtues of integrations of mechanistic explanations—unification and greater qualitative parsimony—and argue that no cross-explanatory integration could have such virtues. However, I go on to argue that this is (...) only a problem for those who think that cognitive science aims to specify one fundamental structure responsible for cognition. For those who do not, cross-explanatory integration will have at least two theoretical virtues to a greater extent than integrations of mechanistic explanations: explanatory depth and applicability. I conclude that one’s views about explanatory integration in cognitive science cannot be segregated from one’s views about the explanatory task of cognitive science. (shrink)
Representationalists and anti-representationalists disagree about whether a naturalisation of mental content is possible and, hence, whether positing mental representations in cognitive science is justified. Here, I develop a novel way to think about mental representations based on a philosophical description of (cognitive) science inspired by cognitive instrumentalism. On this view, our acceptance of theories positing mental representations and our beliefs in (something like) mental representations do not depend on the naturalisation of content. Thus, I conclude that if we endorse cognitive (...) instrumentalism about mental representations, then we can finally leave the dispute between representationalism and anti-representationalism behind. (shrink)
This book evaluates whether or not we can decide on the best theory of concepts by appealing to the explanatory results of cognitive science. It undertakes an in-depth analysis of different theories of concepts and of the explanations formulated in cognitive science. As a result, two reasons are provided for thinking that an appeal to cognitive science cannot help to decide on the best theory of concepts.
Some philosophers argue that all concepts cannot have the same representational structure, because no single kind of representation has been successful in accounting for the phenomena related to the formation and application of concepts. Here, I argue against this “appeal to cognitive science” by demonstrating that different theories of the kind concept cohere with different interpretations of the argument. To circumvent the threat of relativism, I argue that theories of concept should be understood as working hypotheses, which are provisionally accepted (...) to facilitate the investigation and explanation of the mind/brain. From this perspective, theories of concept are to be evaluated as part of a comparative analysis of the different kinds of cognitive science they inspire. (shrink)
A tension has been identified between the acquisition and participation metaphors for learning, and it is generally agreed that this tension has still not been adequately resolved. In this paper, we offer an alternative to the acquisition and participation metaphors for learning: the metaphor of mastering. Our claim is that the mastering metaphor, as grounded in inferentialism, allows one to treat both the acquisition and participation dimensions of learning as complementary and mutually constitutive. Inferentialism is a semantic theory which explains (...) concept formation in terms of the inferences individuals make in the context of an intersubjective practice of acknowledging, attributing, and challenging one another's commitments. We first introduce the key concepts of inferentialism and consider the perspective on learning that inferentialism inspires. Then, we condense the lessons of the inferentialist concepts into a single mastering metaphor for learning and argue that learning consists in the process by which learners come to master concepts and practices. We conclude by discussing how the mastering metaphor could be put to work in a theoretical reconciliation of the cognitive and sociocultural dimensions of learning. (shrink)
Cognitive theorists routinely disagree about the evidence supporting claims in cognitive science. Here, we first argue that some disagreements about evidence in cognitive science are about the evidence available to be drawn upon by cognitive theorists. Then, we show that one’s explanation of why this first kind of disagreement obtains will cohere with one’s theory of evidence. We argue that the best explanation for why cognitive theorists disagree in this way is because their evidence is what they rationally grant. Finally, (...) we explain why our view does not lead to a pernicious kind of relativism in cognitive science. (shrink)
Folk is an analog foundation in a digital world. Phenomenology is a big word about a small, impossible task: trying to imagine the real. This book describes this task in relation to its foundation. Most of all, 'Folk phenomenology' is a defense of the integrity and sufficiency of art--thinking, feeling, living, dying. In short, being in love."--Back cover.
Is there room for philosophy in educational research? Is there phenomenology before and beyond its uses and abuses in the applied and social sciences? How are phenomenology and philosophy of education related? What are the methods for phenomenology within the field of philosophy of education? These talks to educational scholars and researchers responds to these questions and appeals for place of philosophy within educational research and the tradition of phenomenology within philosophy of education. Across a genealogy of thought and frequent (...) autobiographical confessions, this book of lectures works from the simple insight that philosophy and education are not so different. (shrink)
Can the Internet reach beyond the U. S. college samples predominant in social science research? A sample of 564,502 participants completed a personality questionnaire online. We found that 19% were not from advanced economies; 20% were from non-Western societies; 35% of the Western-society sample were not from the United States; and 66% of the U. S. sample were not in the 18–22 (college) age group.
Much of the understanding of the nature of science in contemporary psychology is founded on a positivistic philosophy of science that cannot adequately account for meaning as experienced. The phenomenological tradition provides an alternative approach to science that is attentive to the inherent meaningfulness of human action in the world. Emmanuel Levinas argues, however, that phenomenology, at least as traditionally conceived, does not provide sufficient grounds for meaning. Levinas argues that meaning is grounded in the ethical encounter with the Other (...) such that meaning arises in rupture. For Levinas, the physical world and the I provide constraints on the meaning given by the Other, even as the Other is logically prior to all other experience. This Levinasian perspective advocates an epistemology that is open to the rupture of the Other as a way to knowledge. This emphasis on openness to rupture entails a methodology in which psychologists must allow the objects of study to guide their methods of research. Finally, the Levinasian perspective implies a scientific community that is sensitive to the rupture occasioned by the encounter with the Other. 2012 APA, all rights reserved). (shrink)
Chomsky's current Biolinguistic methodology is shown to comport with what might be called 'established' aspects of biological method, thereby raising, in the biolinguistic domain, issues concerning biological autonomy from the physical sciences. At least current irreducibility of biology, including biolinguistics, stems in at least some cases from the very nature of what I will claim is physiological, or inter-organ/inter-component, macro-levels of explanation which play a new and central explanatory role in Chomsky's inter-componential explanation of certain properties of the syntactic component (...) of Universal Grammar. Under this new mode of explanation, certain physiological functions of cognitive mental organs are hypothesized, in an attempt to explain aspects of their internal anatomy. Thus, the internal anatomy of the syntactic component exhibits features that enable it to effectively interface with other 'adjacent' organs, such as the Conceptual-Intensional system and the Sensory- Motor system. These two interface systems take as their inputs the assembled outputs of the syntactic component and, as a result of the very syntactic structure imposed by the syntax are then able to assign their sound and meaning interpretations. If this is an accurate characterization, Chomsky's long-standing postulation of mental organs, and I will argue, the advancement of new hypotheses concerning physiological inter-organ functions, has attained in current biolinguistic Minimalist method a significant unification with foundational aspects of physiological explanation in other areas of biology. (shrink)
"With the same intellectual goals as the first edition, this innovative introductory logic textbook explores the relationship between natural language and logic, motivating the student to acquire skills and techniques of formal logic. This new and revised edition includes substantial additions which make the text even more useful to students and instructors alike. Central to these changes is an Appendix, 'How to Learn Logic', which takes the student through fourteen compact and sharply directed lessons with exercises and answers"--Google books viewed (...) Feb. 19, 2021. (shrink)
An imbalance is identified in social psychology between controlled experimental studies (which are common) and real-world, ecologically valid studies (which are rare). The preponderance of experimental studies (which provide mere existence proofs and lack realism) helps fuel social psychology's fault-finding focus. Laboratory experiments and ecological studies should be pursued jointly to examine social life in the real world.
This is a phenomenological description of existential obedience, which draws out a contrast between it and ressentiment and existential envy, and compares it with pedagogical obedience. The discussion is developed with reference especially to the work of Erich Fromm, Emerson, and Nietzsche. Eds: This paper forms part of a special issue titled ‘Beyond Virtue and Vice: Education for a Darker Age’, in which the editors invited authors to engage in exercises of ‘transvaluation’. Certain apparently settled educational concepts (from agency and (...) fulfilment to alienation and ignorance) can be reinterpreted and transvaluated (in a Nietzschean vein) such that virtues become vices, and vices, virtues. The editors encouraged authors to employ polemics and some occasional exaggeration to reimagine educational values that are all too readily accepted within contemporary educational discourses. (shrink)
With Day One, Genesis 1.1 5, as a focus and informed by the understanding that all texts are intertexts, S. D. Giere shapes and employs a method that harnesses the idea of intertextuality for the purpose of exploring the history of interpretation of a biblical text. With a unique compilation of intertexts of Gen 1.1-5, the work explores the intertexual reach of Day One in Hebrew and Greek texts up to c. 200 CE. What emerges is a glimpse of the (...) intertextuality of Day One that provides insight into the complexity of the intertextuality of a biblical text and the relationship of intertextuality and interpretation. ". (shrink)
The question whether compulsory schooling is justifiable or not has been treated at considerable length by critics, defenders, and positions in-between. What these treatments—about paternalism and autonomy and institutionalization and more—have not directly analyzed is a question that precedes the issue of overall justification: the preliminary question of time. Does it matter when compulsion takes place? Furthermore, does the timing of compulsion matter to the question of overall justification? I will argue that it does matter, but for reasons not directly (...) related to the question of overall justification. (shrink)
This collection explicates one of the core ideas underpinning Minimalist theory--explanation via simplification. It introduces and advances Minimalist theory for students and scholars in linguistics and related sub-disciplines of psychology, philosophy, and cognitive science.