Journal Article

Structural Flaws: Massive Modularity and the Argument from Design

Armin W. Schulz

in The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science

Published on behalf of British Society for the Philosophy of Science

Volume 59, issue 4, pages 733-743
Published in print December 2008 | ISSN: 0007-0882
Published online December 2008 | e-ISSN: 1464-3537 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjps/axn036
Structural Flaws: Massive Modularity and the Argument from Design

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The ‘argument from design’ plays a pivotal role in Carruthers’ recent defence of the massive modularity thesis. However, as this paper seeks to show, there are major flaws in its structure. If construed deductively, it is unsound: modular mental architecture is not necessarily the best architecture, and even if it were, this alone would not show that this architecture evolved. If construed inductively, it is not much more convincing, as it then appears to be too weak to support the kind of modularity Carruthers is concerned with. The upshot of this is that whatever reason we might have for believing that the mind is massively modular, it is not based on the argument from design.

Introduction

Carruthers’ Argument from Design

Modularity and Optimality: Problems for the Deductive Argument from Design

Degrees of Modularity: Problems for the Inductive Argument from Design

Conclusion

Journal Article.  4303 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Philosophy of Science ; Science and Mathematics

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