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Concept talk cannot be avoided

  • James A. Hampton (a1)


Distinct systems for representing concepts as prototypes, exemplars, and theories are closely integrated in the mind, and the notion of concept is required as a framework for exploring this integration. Eliminating the term “concept” from our theories will hinder rather than promote scientific progress.



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Barsalou, L. W. & Hale, C. R. (1993) Components of conceptual representation: From feature lists to recursive frames. In: Categories and concepts: Theoretical views and inductive data analysis, ed. van Mechelen, I., Hampton, J. A., Michalski, R. S. & Theuns, P., pp. 97144. Academic Press.
Hampton, J. A. (1998) Similarity-based categorization and fuzziness of natural categories. Cognition 65:137–65.
Machery, E. (2009) Doing without concepts. Oxford University Press.
Mayr, E. (1982) The growth of biological thought: Diversity, evolution, and inheritance. Harvard University Press.
Murphy, G. L. (2002) The big book of concepts. MIT Press.
Smith, J. D. & Minda, J. P. (1998) Prototypes in the mist: The early epochs of category learning. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition 24:1411–36.
Storms, G., De Boeck, P. & Ruts, W. (2000) Prototype and exemplar based information in natural language categories. Journal of Memory and Language 42:5173.


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