Mike Beaton will be speaking on “Inman was right?!”
4:30 p.m., 10 May 2007
Pevensey I 1A1
Hi, I’ve been trying to say something useful about what we really mean by ‘content’ and ‘representation’. On the account I now give, both of these are very closely tied to functional explanation, and much of what Inman said about the problems there is correct. The headline result (if I’m right): it makes no sense at all to look for a sub-system (‘sub-personal’, in one sense of it) state whose representational contents are the contents of a personal level mental state (perception, thought, belief, etc.). On the other hand, contra Inman (as I understand him), I believe functional explanation can still be used to understand mind, but only if we can first analyze mind into component, whole-system, sub-rational abilities.
Fuller abstract at:
Paper to follow.
Apologies to Inman for the fact that I (no doubt) continue to completely misunderstand his points.