On the Distinction between Semantic and Conceptual Representation



I address the problem of the distinction between semantic and conceptual representations from general considerations about how to distinguish a representational kind. I consider three different ways of telling representational kinds apart – in terms of structure, processing and content – and I examine if semantic representations may constitute a distinct kind with respect to each of them. I argue that the best options for semantic representation to be regarded as a distinct representational kind with respect to each of the three criteria conflict with each other, since it appears respectively as an atomic representation, as a sort of procedural rule or as a structured complex.