The Modularity Theory

Alvin I. Goldman

in Simulating Minds

Published in print August 2006 | ISBN: 9780195138924
Published online September 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780199786480 | DOI:

Series: Philosophy of Mind Series

 The Modularity Theory

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Modularists claim that folk psychology is mediated by an innate modularized database, the structures of which support inferences concerning representational relations like belief, desire, and pretense. It is doubtful, however, that mindreading really qualifies as modular, specifically, that it satisfies Fodor’s chief criteria of modularity: domain specificity and informational encapsulation. Alan Leslie postulates a core module called the “theory of mind mechanism”, but most of the work in assigning mental states is done by the “selection processor”, which is a non-modular mechanism. Finally, no real evidence is provided that propositional attitudes are ascribed via theoretical inference rather than simulation.

Keywords: domain specificity; Fodor; informational encapsulation; Leslie; modularity; pretense; selection processor; theory of mind mechanism

Chapter.  8205 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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