Åsa Wikforss – Originalist Concepts and the Transparency of Content

Event Date: 27 March 2012
Senate House
University of London
Malet Street
London WC1E 7HU

The Institute of Philosophy presents

Professor  Åsa Wikforss (Stockholm)
Originalist Concepts and the Transparency of Content

I start by examining three central theses about originalist concepts:
That they are both abstract objects and also mental representations; that they are not individuated by their contents; and that they are all externalist. I argue that the first thesis is the most problematic one, since concepts cannot both be abstract objects and mental particulars. I then argue that what is doing the real work in the book is not so much originialist concepts but the claim that thought content is not transparent. I argue that the transparency strategy is problematic since it requires the attribution of meta-beliefs to individuals. Moreover, I argue that the strategy fails to provide a satisfactory solution to the puzzles of thought discussed in the book. Rejecting transparency may ‘absolve’ the speaker from her irrationalities, but it does not help capturing her cognitive perspective. Hence, originalism does not really succeed in its explicit aim to combine “the best features of Fregean and Millian views”

———————————————–

talk:

Play

———————————————–

questions:

Play

———————————————–

accompanying images:

———————————————–

back to conference page

share this entry: