I wish to thank Hanoch Ben-Yami, David Chalmers, Kirk Ludwig, Paul McNamara, F. Jeffrey Pelletier and an anonymous referee for this journal, for helpful discussion and good suggestions. Earlier versions of this paper were presented to the European Society for Philosophy and Psychology (Oxford, 1995), and to the Society for Exact Philosophy (Tennessee, 1996). My thanks to the participants in those sessions.
Fodor and the Inscrutability Problem
Article first published online: 4 MAY 2007
Mind & Language
Volume 12, Issue 3-4, pages 475–489, September 1997
How to Cite
RAY, G. (1997), Fodor and the Inscrutability Problem. Mind & Language, 12: 475–489. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-0017.1997.tb00084.x
- Issue published online: 4 MAY 2007
- Article first published online: 4 MAY 2007
Abstract: In his 1993 Nicod Lectures, Jerry Fodor proposed a solution to a certain version of the problem of‘inscrutability of reference’, which problem poses a challenge to a certain naturalistic, computational approach to cognition which Fodor has favoured. The problem is that purely informational accounts of an agent's mental contents cannot discriminate meanings finely enough. Fodor proposes a strategy of solution which appeals to the inferential dispositions of agents to discriminate contents more finely. After a brief exposition of the problem and Fodor's bid for solution, I employ three counterexamples to argue that Fodor's proposal cannot succeed.