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Abstract: In the cognitive sciences, representations play a central role in explaining behaviour. Characteristically, representing correctly explains successful behaviour and misrepresentation explains failure. The standards of success and failure at play here are often tacit. What are they based on? Teleosemantics offers one answer: success is a matter of performing an evolutionary function. This paper uses case studies from cognitive neuroscience to argue that a system can have functions, at which representational explanations are directed, that do not depend on…Find out more »
Abstract: The relationship between kin and group selection is a vexed issue in evolutionary theory, and matters are not helped by a tendency to conflate questions of methodology with questions of causal reality. Drawing inspiration from W. D. Hamilton, I suggest we conceptualise the distinction between kin and group selection in terms of differences of degree in the structural features of populations. I then argue that we can usefully draw a parallel distinction in the case of cultural evolution. Cultural…Find out more »
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