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Common Sense, Reasoning, and Rationality$
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Renee Elio

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780195147667

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2006

DOI: 10.1093/0195147669.001.0001

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Ending the Rationality Wars How to Make Disputes about Human Rationality Disappear

Ending the Rationality Wars How to Make Disputes about Human Rationality Disappear

(p.236) 11 Ending the Rationality Wars How to Make Disputes about Human Rationality Disappear
Common Sense, Reasoning, and Rationality

Richard Samuels (Contributor Webpage)

Stephen Stich (Contributor Webpage)

Michael Bishop (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on the two opposing sides of the current rationality wars with the “heuristics and biases” researchers on the one hand, and the evolutionary psychologists on the other. The former group cites decades of evidence that people have systematic deviations from rationality, as evidenced by their performance on certain types of formal reasoning tasks. The latter group asserts the implausibility of the human architecture evolving with an inaccurate sense of probability and offers evidence that a representation of various formal problems in more ecologically valid forms makes the so-called irrational response patterns disappear. It is argued that the illusion that evolutionary psychology and the heuristics and biases tradition have a deep disagreement about how rational human beings are should disappear. This is not to say, however, that there are no genuine disagreements between these two research programs.

Keywords:   heuristics, biases, rationality, evolutionary psychologists, deviations

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