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DOI: 10.4324/9780415249126-W013-1
Version: v1,  Published online: 1998
Retrieved July 13, 2024, from

Article Summary

There is wide disagreement about the meaning of ordinary mental terms (such as ‘belief’, ‘desire’, ‘pain’). Sellars suggested that our use of these terms is governed by a widely shared theory, ‘folk psychology’, a suggestion that has gained empirical support in psychological studies of self-attribution and in a growing literature concerning how children acquire (or, in the case of autism, fail to acquire) ordinary mental concepts. Recently, there has been a lively debate about whether people actually ‘theorize’ about the mind, or, instead, engage in some kind of ‘simulation’ of mental processes.

Citing this article:
Stich, Stephen P. and Georges Rey. Folk psychology, 1998, doi:10.4324/9780415249126-W013-1. Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Taylor and Francis,
Copyright © 1998-2024 Routledge.

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