Factive verbs and factive mental states

My last post went back to babies, to see if the dawn of mental state attribution might show us something about the relationship between knowledge and belief.  Even for those who take the concept of belief to be innate or very early-developing, belief attribution is weirdly dependent on knowledge attribution …

Symposium on Hayley Clatterbuck, “Chimpanzee Mindreading and the Value of Parsimonious Mental Models”

I’m happy to initiate our latest Mind & Language symposium on  Hayley Clatterbucks’s  “Chimpanzee Mindreading and the Value of Parsimonious Mental Models,” from the journal’s September 2015 issue, with commentaries by Cameron Buckner (Houston), Shannon Spaulding (Oklahoma), and Jennifer Vonk (Oakland). There has been a long-standing debate about whether apes, dogs, corvids, and possibly other animals have the capacity to engage in …

#MindsOnline 2015, Session 1: Social Cognition

The Minds Online conference has begun, and our first session will be open for discussion through September 4. It is on the theme of Social Cognition, and includes the following papers: Tony Jack and Jared Friedman (Case Western Reserve): “Mapping cognitive structure onto the landscape of philosophical debate: an empirical framework …

Which Theory of Mind? – And other questions

In my final post I would like to wrap up by sketching some of the implications of my proposal – in particular concerning our theorizing about social cognition – as well as raising some questions that are being left open. There exists quite a large controversy in philosophy and psychology …

Call for Abstracts: Workshop on Minimal Mindreading, University of Magdeburg, November 6-8, 2014

Classical explanations of social cognition assume that complex social interaction involves social understanding and that social understanding in turn depends on the ability to read others’ minds, i.e. on the ability to attribute mental states, such as beliefs and desires, to others for the purposes of predicting and explaining their …

Symposium on Butterfill and Apperly’s “How to Construct a Minimal Theory of Mind” (Mind & Language 28, 606-637)

With apologies for the delay, I’m glad to begin our next Mind & Language symposium, on Stephen Butterfill and Ian Apperly’s article “How to Construct a Minimal Theory of Mind”, with commentaries by Hannes Rakoczy (Göttingen), Shannon Spaulding (Oklahoma State), and Tad Zawidzki (George Washington University). 0

Some Questions on Heterophenomenology

Here are two things Dennett says about heterophenomenology: (1) Scientists should interpret a subject’s first-person reports as expressions of the subject’s beliefs (about their consciousness experience)(2) Scientists should treat people as incorrigible about what it’s like to be them. Since (2) seems to contradict Dennett’s often repeated claim that people …

Imageless Thought

The standard story about the demise of introspectionist psychology goes something like this:  Towards the beginning of the 20th Century, experimental psychologists relied on introspecting subjects to study the mind.  Members of one prominent school believed that each thought is reducible to sensory images (visual, auditory including verbal, proprioceptive, etc.).  Among …