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Basic-Acceptance Teleosemantics, Esteban Withrington 2019 The Graduate Center, City University of New York

Basic-Acceptance Teleosemantics, Esteban Withrington

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

I propose an approach to naturalize semantics that combines the use-theory of meaning with teleosemantics. More specifically, I combine Horwich’s claim that the meanings of words are engendered by the acceptance of basic sentences that govern their deployment with the teleosemantic model, developed by Millikan, Papineau and Neander, according to which the meanings of symbols are related to functions determined by the history of their use and of the underlying biological mechanisms responsible for it.

Horwich’s account is general enough to offer plausible explanations of the meanings of all kinds of words and provides a plausible explanation of ...


Argument For The Absurd, John Dotterweich 2019 Kansas State University Libraries

Argument For The Absurd, John Dotterweich

Kansas State University Undergraduate Research Conference

Feed, The Society of the Spectacle, and The Myth of Sisyphus help answer the question: how do you live authentically in an inauthentic world? As modernity and trends occupy us in different ways, we must decide how to use our time fruitfully. Keeping up with latest trends, news, and social media not only is exhausting but disjointing from meaningful experience. Total rejection of technology and norms can lead to isolation from those who do keep up with them. In other words, alienating your self from others leads to a lack of socialization, something that makes us happy members of society ...


Dog Breed Classification Using Convolutional Neural Networks: Interpreted Through A Lockean Perspective, Xavier S. Higa 2019 Lake Forest College

Dog Breed Classification Using Convolutional Neural Networks: Interpreted Through A Lockean Perspective, Xavier S. Higa

Senior Theses

The problem of fine-grained classification is one in which traditionally humans have fared better than computers. Only recently, with the advent of complex Machine Learning techniques, we have seen systems that can compete with or beat humans at this problem. In this work, we trained two Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs) on the Stanford Dogs dataset and made them recognize dog breeds. We also analyzed the response maps of the CNNs with the aim of determining which breed-specific features the networks had learned in order to classify the images. Upon obtaining these features, we attempted to gain an insight into them ...


Painting Intimacy: Art-Based Research Of Intimacy, Michal Lev 2019 Lesley University

Painting Intimacy: Art-Based Research Of Intimacy, Michal Lev

Expressive Therapies Dissertations

This art-based research explores whether — and, if so, how — the process of painting, together with witnessing and reflection on the process and imagery, further an understanding of intimacy. The research also examines the conditions that favor intimacy, the obstacles to intimacy, and the particular features of artistic media, processes and reflection, through the editing of video footage, that can further the intimate experience. The participants in the study were five adults (including the researcher) between the ages of thirty and eighty who were familiar with the creation of visual art. Among them were three women and two men who vary ...


Adhd And The Deficit Of Knowing: What?, Katie N. Schenk 2019 Kansas State University

Adhd And The Deficit Of Knowing: What?, Katie N. Schenk

Crossing Borders: A Multidisciplinary Journal of Undergraduate Scholarship

This research-based essay explores the author’s experience with ADHD, as the essay’s formatting and usage of space evolves into a visual representation of the ADHD mind and questions the human capacity to identify, label, and differentiate inaccessible experiences. The common, often misinformed understanding of ADHD is disputed through in depth analyses of various brain functions. In particular, the atypical development of the executive functions housed in the ADHD person’s frontal lobe are explored through both contemporary research and personal experience, which are variously compared and contrasted to the supposed neurotypical experience. Consideration of ADHD’s lifelong stigma ...


A Defense Of Pure Connectionism, Alex B. Kiefer 2019 The Graduate Center, City University of New York

A Defense Of Pure Connectionism, Alex B. Kiefer

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

Connectionism is an approach to neural-networks-based cognitive modeling that encompasses the recent deep learning movement in artificial intelligence. It came of age in the 1980s, with its roots in cybernetics and earlier attempts to model the brain as a system of simple parallel processors. Connectionist models center on statistical inference within neural networks with empirically learnable parameters, which can be represented as graphical models. More recent approaches focus on learning and inference within hierarchical generative models. Contra influential and ongoing critiques, I argue in this dissertation that the connectionist approach to cognitive science possesses in principle (and, as is becoming ...


Quantum Uncertainty Reduction (Qur) Theory Of Attended Access And Phenomenal Consciousness, Anatoly V. Nichvoloda 2019 The Graduate Center, City University of New York

Quantum Uncertainty Reduction (Qur) Theory Of Attended Access And Phenomenal Consciousness, Anatoly V. Nichvoloda

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

In this dissertation I defend a theory of perceptual consciousness titled “Quantum Uncertainty Reduction” (QUR[1]) Theory of Attended Access and Phenomenal Consciousness.” Consciousness is widely perceived as a phenomenon that poses a special explanatory problem for science. The problem arises in the apparent rift between an immediate first-person acquaintance with consciousness and our lack of ability to provide an objective/scientific third-person characterization of consciousness.

I begin by reviewing philosophical ideas of Ned Block, David Chalmers and Jesse Prinz whose characterizations of consciousness provide a conceptual framework that the proposed theory aims to satisfy. Block and Chalmers argue that ...


Are Knowledge Ascriptions Sensitive To Social Context?, Alexander Jackson 2019 Boise State University

Are Knowledge Ascriptions Sensitive To Social Context?, Alexander Jackson

Alexander Jackson

Plausibly, the stakes in a practical task at hand can affect how people ascribe knowledge. I propose a new psychological account of the effect. My hypothesis is motivated by empirical research on how people’s judgements are sensitive to their social context. Specifically, people’s evaluations are sensitive to their ‘psychological distance’ from the scenarios they are considering. Experimental philosophy has found that what’s at stake for a fictional character in a fictional scenario has little effect on how participants ascribe knowledge to them. My hypothesis predicts this finding. (This illustrates a general problem for X-phi: one should not ...


Reply To Carlos Montemayor & Abrol Fairweather, Jonardon GANERI 2019 San Jose State University

Reply To Carlos Montemayor & Abrol Fairweather, Jonardon Ganeri

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Review Of Attention, Not Self By Jonardon Ganeri, Carlos MONTEMAYOR, Abrol FAIRWEATHER 2019 San Francisco State University

Review Of Attention, Not Self By Jonardon Ganeri, Carlos Montemayor, Abrol Fairweather

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Inference, Perception, And Recognition: Kaśmīr Śaivism And The Problem Of Other Minds, Joshua STOLL 2019 University of Hawaii West Oahu

Inference, Perception, And Recognition: Kaśmīr Śaivism And The Problem Of Other Minds, Joshua Stoll

Comparative Philosophy

This paper will explore competing intuitions behind the problem of other minds. On the one hand, consciousness is strictly a self-manifest, first-person phenomenon: subjectivity is in each case one’s own. On the other hand, it is obvious, on the basis of their behavioral activity, that others are conscious agents despite this coming across through objective determinations. The tension between these intuitions is what grounds the problem of other minds. Attempts to navigate this problem generally neglect one of these intuitions and so are inadequate accounts of intersubjectivity. As such, and given the paradox involved in accepting each intuition, I ...


Inferring And Explaining, Jeffery L. Johnson 2019 Portland State University

Inferring And Explaining, Jeffery L. Johnson

PDXOpen: Open Access Textbooks

Inferring and Explaining is a book in practical epistemology. It examines the notion of evidence and assumes that good evidence is the essence of rational thinking. Evidence is the cornerstone of the natural, social, and behavioral sciences. But it is equally central to almost all academic pursuits and, perhaps most importantly, to the basic need to live an intelligent and reflective life.

The book further assumes that a particular model of evidence— Inference to the Best Explanation—not only captures the essence of (good) evidence but suggests a very practical, and pedagogically useful, procedure for evidence evaluation. The book is ...


Intelligence As Mental Manipulation In Humans And Nonhuman Animals, Moran Bar-Hen-Schweiger, Avishai Henik 2019 Ben-Gurion University of the Negev

Intelligence As Mental Manipulation In Humans And Nonhuman Animals, Moran Bar-Hen-Schweiger, Avishai Henik

Animal Sentience

Chapman & Huffman review and evaluate various aspects of the notion of human superiority. In this commentary we focus on intelligence and suggest a biologically based view of intelligence applicable to humans and non-human species alike. “Mental manipulation” (e.g., mental transformations, rotations, perspective-taking), an extension of object manipulation, provides a continuous, biologically based concept for studying intelligent behavior in humans and other species and challenges the notion of human superiority.


Phenotypic Similarity And Moral Consideration, S. Brian Hood, Sophia Giddens 2019 University of West Florida

Phenotypic Similarity And Moral Consideration, S. Brian Hood, Sophia Giddens

Animal Sentience

Identifying specific traits to justify according differential moral status to humans and non-human animals may be more challenging than Chapman & Huffman suggest. The reasons for this also go against their recommendation that we ought to attend to how humans and non-humans are similar. The problem lies in identifying the moral relevance of biological characteristics. There are, however, other reasons for treating non-human animals as worthy of moral consideration, such as the Precautionary Principle.


Our Brains Make Us Out To Be Unique In Ways We Are Not, Matthew J. Criscione, Julian Paul Keenan 2019 Montclair State University

Our Brains Make Us Out To Be Unique In Ways We Are Not, Matthew J. Criscione, Julian Paul Keenan

Animal Sentience

Humans have long viewed themselves in a favorable light. This bias is consistent with a general pattern of self-enhancement. Neural systems in the medial prefrontal cortex underlie this way of thinking, which, even when false, may be beneficial for survival. It is hence not surprising that we often disregard contrary evidence in believing ourselves superior.


Is Human Uniqueness Fake News?, Sean Hermanson 2019 Florida Int'l University

Is Human Uniqueness Fake News?, Sean Hermanson

Animal Sentience

The world and its troubles don't need unfounded denials of human uniqueness.


“I Am Not An Animal”, Lori Marino 2019 Animal Studies Repository

“I Am Not An Animal”, Lori Marino

Animal Sentience

The answer to Chapman & Huffman’s question — “Why do we want to think humans are different?” — lies in the work of Ernest Becker and the social psychology literature known as Terror Management Theory, according to which our deep anxiety about animality and death can drive our need to feel superior to the other animals.


Mobilizing Heads And Hearts For Wildlife Conservation, Valérie A. M. Schoof, Simon L'Allier 2019 York University

Mobilizing Heads And Hearts For Wildlife Conservation, Valérie A. M. Schoof, Simon L'Allier

Animal Sentience

Highlighting the shared evolutionary relationships between humans and animals — and recognizing that all species, including humans, are unique in their own way — may facilitate caring for and conserving animals by tapping into a human emotion: empathy.


Developmental Aspects Of Capacities, Karen Bartsch 2019 University of Wyoming

Developmental Aspects Of Capacities, Karen Bartsch

Animal Sentience

Chapman & Huffman suggest that judgments of human superiority underlie our cruelty to animals. It might be useful to examine how such judgments operate within the human community. Children arguably have a potential for developing “superior” capacities but are outperformed on many tasks by animals. There is a continuum of development in children’s capacities. Perhaps there are interspecies evolutionary continua too. This highlights the complexity of reasoning about humans, animals, and moral inclusion.


Sentience Is The Foundation Of Animal Rights, Michael L. Woodruff 2019 East Tennessee State University

Sentience Is The Foundation Of Animal Rights, Michael L. Woodruff

Animal Sentience

Chapman & Huffman argue that the cognitive differences between humans and nonhuman animals do not make humans superior to animals. I suggest that humans have domain-general cognitive abilities that make them superior in causing uniquely complex changes in the world not caused by any other species. The ability to conceive of and articulate a claim of rights is an example. However, possession of superior cognitive ability does not entitle humans to superior moral status. It is sentience, not cognitive complexity, that is the basis for the assignment of rights and the protections under the law that accompany them.


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