Conceptual innovation, function first

Simion, M. and Kelp, C. (2019) Conceptual innovation, function first. Noûs, (doi:10.1111/nous.12302) (Early Online Publication)

Simion, M. and Kelp, C. (2019) Conceptual innovation, function first. Noûs, (doi:10.1111/nous.12302) (Early Online Publication)

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Abstract

Can we engineer conceptual change? While a positive answer to this question would be exciting news for philosophy, there has been a growing number of pessimistic voices in the literature. This paper resists this trend. Its central aim is to argue not only that conceptual engineering is possible but also that it is not even distinctively hard. In order to achieve this, we will develop a novel approach to conceptual engineering that has two key components. First, it proposes a reorientation of the conceptual engineering project away from fixing conceptual defects and towards bringing about conceptual innovation. Second, it offers a new account of when conceptual engineering is successful in terms of etiological functions. We then turn to the reasons that have motivated various forms of pessimism about conceptual engineering and show that, on our novel approach, none of them stands up to scrutiny.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Early Online Publication
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Kelp, Dr Christoph and Simionescu, Dr Mona Ioana
Authors: Simion, M., and Kelp, C.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Humanities > Philosophy
Journal Name:Noûs
Publisher:Wiley
ISSN:0029-4624
ISSN (Online):1468-0068
Published Online:05 July 2019
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
First Published:First published in Noûs 2019
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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