Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Innate Mind, Volume 3Foundations and the Future$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence, and Stephen Stich

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195332834

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195332834.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 04 June 2020

Is Innateness a Confused Concept?

Is Innateness a Confused Concept?

Chapter:
2 Is Innateness a Confused Concept?
Source:
The Innate Mind, Volume 3
Author(s):

Richard Samuels (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195332834.003.0002

This chapter argues that cognitive science's concept of innateness is not confused. It begins by setting out the Argument for Confusion, which seeks to show that the concept of innateness is confused because it confounds several independent properties. This argument is shown to be inconclusive by highlighting two ways in which innateness might be associated with a range of distinct properties without confounding them. Although this perhaps shows that the Argument for Confusion is inconclusive, it leaves an important challenge unaddressed: how to explain in detail the relationship between the various properties associated with innateness and innateness itself. It is shown that the concept of innateness, at least as it figures in cognitive science, is not a confused one. This leaves a residual puzzle: if the concept of innateness is not confused, then why are debates over innateness in cognitive science often accompanied by confusion? The chapter concludes with a brief discussion of this matter.

Keywords:   Argument for Confusion, nativism, innateness concept, cognitive science, innateness

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .