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    Polger, Thomas W. 2012. Functionalism as a philosophical theory of the cognitive sciences. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Cognitive Science, Vol. 3, Issue. 3, p. 337.

    Bickle, John 2010. Has the last decade of challenges to the multiple realization argument provided aid and comfort to psychoneural reductionists?. Synthese, Vol. 177, Issue. 2, p. 247.

    Bickle, John 2006. Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science.

    Charland, Louis C. 2006. La psychopathologie et le statut d’espèce naturelle de l’émotion. Philosophiques, Vol. 33, Issue. 1, p. 217.

    Philipse, Herman 1990. The absolute network theory of language and traditional epistemology: On the philosophical foundations of Paul Churchland's scientific realism1. Inquiry, Vol. 33, Issue. 2, p. 127.

    Maloney, J. Christopher 1987. The right stuff. Synthese, Vol. 70, Issue. 3, p. 349.

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Is Thinker a Natural Kind?

  • Paul M. Churchland (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 May 2010

Functionalism in the philosophy of mind is here criticized from the perspective of a more naturalistic and less compromising form of materialism. Parallels are explored between the problem of cognitive activity and the somewhat more settled problem of vital activity. The lessons drawn suggest that functionalism in the philosophy of mind may be both counterproductive as a research strategy, and false as a substantive position.

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H. F. Blum (1951), Time's Arrow and Evolution (Princeton).

P. M. Churchland (1981a), “Eliminative Materialism and the Propositional Attitudes”, Journal of Philosophy 78/2 (02).

P. M. Churchland (1981b), “Functionalism, Qualia, and Intentionality”, with P. S. Churchland , Philosophical Topics 12/1.

P. S. Churchland (1978), “Fodor on Language Learning”, Synthese, 38.

P. M. Churchland (1980b), “Language, Thought, and Information Processing”, Nous 14/2 (05),

J. A. Fodor (1980), “Methodological solipsism considered as a research strategy in cognitive psychology”, The Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3/1 (03).

Z. Pylyshyn (1980), “Computation and Cognition”, The Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3/1 (03).

R. C. Richardson (1979), “Functionalism and Reductionism”, Philosophy of Science 46/4.

A. Ruiz-Marcos , and F. Valverde (1969), “The temporal evolution of the distribution of dendritic spines in the visual cortex of normal and dark raised mice”, Experimental Brain Research 8, 284294.,

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Dialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review / Revue canadienne de philosophie
  • ISSN: 0012-2173
  • EISSN: 1759-0949
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