Questions On The Block And Fodor Essay

965 Words Jul 22nd, 2015 4 Pages
Block and Fodor begin by defining their use of type identical. Two organisms are type identical when they share the same type of psychological states. Another form of type identity exists when a single organism has the same psychological state at different times. In order to determine the conditions for sameness of types of psychological states, the authors consider three options: behaviorism, identity and functional state identity theory (FIST). So far, there is no need to accept a philosophical theory where psychological states correspond to physical states, behavior dispositions, or even machine table states. The conclusion of this paper is that none of these theories offer sufficient conditions for type-to-type correspondence with psychological states (pg. 181).
Three kinds of empirical considerations are made to “show type identity of psychological states of organisms are, in a relevant sense, insufficiently abstract” (pg. 162): Lashleyan doctrine of neurological equipotentiality, Darwinian doctrine of convergence, and psychological possibility of artifacts. The insufficiently abstract type-to-type correspondences permit us to look outside behaviorist, identity, or functionalist theories of mental states.
Lashleyan doctrine is reviewed first in attempting to show the abstract nature of one-to-one correspondence. Lashleyan doctrine follows Putnam’s point about octopi, mollusks, and reptiles. The point here is similar psychological functions can work, or be realized by…

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