Concepts: Where Cognitive Science Went Wrong

Paperback | March 1, 1998

byJerry A. Fodor

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Oxford Cognitive Science Series General Editors: Martin Davies, Wilde Reader in Mental Philosophy, University of Oxford, UK, James Higginbotham, Professor of General Linguistics, University of Oxford, UK, John O'Keefe, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College, London, UK, Christopher Peacocke, Waynflete Professorof Metaphysical Philosophy, University of Oxford, UK, and Kim Plunkett, University Lecturer in Psychology, University of Oxford, UK The Oxford Cognitive Science series is a forum for the best contemporary work in this flourishing field, where various disciplines--cognitive psychology, philosophy, linguistics, cognitive neuroscience, and computational theory--join forces in the investigation of thought, awareness, understanding,and associated workings of the mind. Each book will represent an original contribution to its subject, but will be accessible beyond the ranks of specialists, so as to reach a broad interdisciplinary readership. The series will be carefully shaped and steered by the general editors, with the aim ofrepresenting the most important developments in the field and bringing together its constituent disciplines. About this book The renowned philosopher Jerry Fodor, who has been a leading figure in the study of the mind for more than twenty years, presents a strikingly original theory of the basic constituents of thought. He suggests that the heart of a cognitive science is its theory of concepts, and that cognitivescientists have gone badly wrong in many areas because their assumptions about concepts have been seriously mistaken. Fodor argues compellingly for an atomistic theory of concepts, deals out witty and pugnacious demolitions of the rival theories that have prevailed in recent years, and suggests thatfuture work on human cognition should build upon new foundations. This lively, conversational, and surprisingly accessible book is the first volume in the Oxford Cognitive Science Series, where the best original work in this field will be presented to a broad readership. Concepts will fascinate anyone interested in contemporary work on mind and language.Cognitive science will never be the same again.

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Oxford Cognitive Science Series General Editors: Martin Davies, Wilde Reader in Mental Philosophy, University of Oxford, UK, James Higginbotham, Professor of General Linguistics, University of Oxford, UK, John O'Keefe, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College, London, UK, Christopher Peacocke, Waynflete Professorof Metap...

Jerry Fodor is Professor of Philosophy at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:192 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.47 inPublished:March 1, 1998Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198236360

ISBN - 13:9780198236368

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Table of Contents

1. Philosophical Introduction: The Background Theory.2. Unphilosophical Introduction: What Concepts Have To Be.3. The Demise of Definitions, Part I: The Linguist's Tale.4. The Demise of Definitions, Part II: The Philosopher's Tale.5. Prototypes and Compositionality. (Appendix 5A: Meaning Postulates. Appendix 5B: The `Theory Theory' of Concepts.)6. Innateness and Ontology, Part I: The Standard Argument. (Appendix 6A: Similarity.)7. Innateness and Ontology, Part II: Intentional Laws and Natural Kinds. (Appendix 7A: Round Squares.)BibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

`Fodor continues to be one of philosophy's great idea generators. This provocative book will set the agenda for discussion about concepts for years to come. Fodor argues for atomism about concepts with wit, verve and style. Everyone interested in philosophical issues of language or mindshould study this book.'Ned Block, Professor of Philosophy and Psychology, New York University