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Millikan and Her Critics

Millikan and Her Critics

Dan Ryder (Editor) , Justine Kingsbury (Editor) , Kenneth Williford (Editor)

ISBN: 978-0-470-65684-6

Dec 2012, Wiley-Blackwell

320 pages

In Stock



Millikan and Her Critics offers a unique critical discussion of Ruth Millikan's highly regarded, influential, and systematic contributions to philosophy of mind and language, philosophy of biology, epistemology, and metaphysics.  These newly written contributions present discussion from some of the most important philosophers in the field today and include replies from Millikan herself.

  • Comprises 13 new essays that critically examine the highly regarded and influential work of Ruth Millikan
  • Covers a wide range of Millikan's most important work, from philosophy of mind and language to philosophy of biology
  • Features contributions by some of the most important and influential philosophers working today
  • Includes original replies to critics by Millikan
Notes on Contributors vii

Foreword ix
Daniel C. Dennett

A Millikan Bibliography xiii

Introduction 1
Dan Ryder, Justine Kingsbury, and Kenneth Williford

1 Toward an Informational Teleosemantics 21
Karen Neander

Reply to Neander, by Ruth Millikan

2 Signals, Icons, and Beliefs 41
Peter Godfrey-Smith

Reply to Godfrey-Smith, by Ruth Millikan

3 Millikan ’ s Isomorphism Requirement 63
Nicholas Shea

Reply to Shea, by Ruth Millikan

4 Millikan on Honeybee Navigation and Communication 87
Michael Rescorla

Reply to Rescorla, by Ruth Millikan

5 Concepts: Useful for Thinking 107
Louise Antony

Reply to Antony, by Ruth Millikan

6 Properties Over Substance 123
Richard Fumerton

Reply to Fumerton, by Ruth Millikan

7 Millikan ’ s Historical Kinds 135
Mohan Matthen

Reply to Matthen, by Ruth Millikan

8 Millikan, Realism, and Sameness 155
Crawford L. Elder

Reply to Elder, by Ruth Millikan

9 Craning the Ultimate Skyhook: Millikan on the Law of Noncontradiction 176
Charles Nussbaum

Reply to Nussbaum, by Ruth Millikan

10 Are Millikan ’ s Concepts Inside-Out? 198
Jesse Prinz

Reply to Prinz, by Ruth Millikan

11 The Epistemology of Meaning 221
Cynthia Macdonald and Graham Macdonald

Reply to Macdonalds, by Ruth Millikan

12 Weasels and the A Priori 241
David Braddon-Mitchell

Reply to Braddon-Mitchell, by Ruth Millikan

13 All in the Family 259
Willem A. deVries

Reply to deVries, by Ruth Millikan

Afterword 281
Ruth Millikan

References 282

Index 292

“Anyone interested in Ruth Millikan’s work should warmly welcome the publication of this engaging and thought-provoking book . . . Indeed, perhaps the most important common idea shared by all essays is that, after so many years, Millikan’s views are still alive because they are extremely useful tools for thinking and addressing philosophical problems.”  (Mind, 1 April 2015)

""Millikan will be one of our most enduring contemporary philosophers. This book offers an invaluable perspective on critical alternatives to her theories, and in the process not only clarifies her place in many contemporary debates, but also clarifies some of the more challenging aspects of her work.” (Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, 24 October 2013)

""There is a nice balance between sympathetic and skeptical commentators; and the discussion is constructive and illuminating throughout. The editors have provided an excellent introduction, which offers a lucid and elegant summary of Millikan’s views, as well as highlighting the main points of discussion in the book. Moreover, Millikan’s replies are extremely helpful in clarifying some of the stickier points in her earlier writings…Taken together, the essays collected here offer an intensive and illuminating exploration of Millikan’s views. The result is an excellent addition to the literature on metaphysics and on the philosophy of mind and language.” (Biology and Philosophy, 28 January 2014)