Learning to Think: A Response to the Language of Thought Argument for Innateness

Author: Viger, Christopher

Source: Mind & Language, Volume 20, Number 3, June 2005 , pp. 313-325(13)

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell

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Abstract:

Abstract: 

Jerry Fodor's argument for an innate language of thought continues to be a hurdle for researchers arguing that natural languages provide us with richer conceptual systems than our innate cognitive resources. I argue that because the logical/formal terms of natural languages are given a use‐theory of meaning, unlike predicates, logical/formal terms might be learned without a mediating internal representation. In that case, our innate representational system might have less logical structure than a natural language, making it possible that we augment our innate representational system and improve our ability to think by learning a natural language.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.0268-1064.2005.00287.x

Publication date: June 1, 2005

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