I’ve written Piccinini and Scott (2006), “Splitting Concepts”.
In the new paper, I argue that there are two kinds of concept: explicit concepts and implicit concepts. Implicit concepts are an implicit version of what psychologists call prototypes, although implicit concepts (unlike prototypes according to most theories) may encode some causal information about categories. Explicit concepts may encode statistical and causal information, but more importantly, they may encode syntactic information, definitional information, and whatever else is needed for the language faculty (in the narrow sense) to process them. Explicit concepts are necessary for explicit cognition – the distinctively human ability to use language, represent unobservable, nonexistent, abstract, and ad hoc aspects of the world, and perform linguistic inferences.
As always, any comments would be welcome.