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Doing without Concepts$
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Edouard Machery

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195306880

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195306880.001.0001

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Concept Eliminativism

Concept Eliminativism

(p.219) 8 Concept Eliminativism
Doing without Concepts

Edouard Machery (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter draws the conclusion of the argument developed in previous chapters: The notion of concept should be eliminated from contemporary psychology. Previous eliminativist arguments against the notion of concept are considered and are judged to be inconclusive. A new type of eliminativist argument called “scientific eliminativism”—showing that the extension of a scientific notion is not a natural kind—is developed and is applied to concepts. Because concepts are not a natural kind, the notion of concept should be eliminated from the theoretical vocabulary of psychology, if this discipline is to progress further.

Keywords:   natural kinds, psychology, scientific progress, eliminativist arguments

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