Contents just are in the head

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of the paper is to show that semantic externalism - the thesis that contents are not determined by "individualistic" features of mental states - is mistaken. Externalist thinking, it is argued, rests on two mistaken assumptions: the assumption that if there is an externalist way of describing a situation the situation exemplifies externalism, and the assumption that cases in which a difference in the environment of an intentional state entails a difference in the state's intentional object are cases in which environmental factors determine the state's content. Exposing these mistakes leads to see that the conditions that are required for the truth of externalism are inconsistent.

Original languageEnglish
Article number269900
Pages (from-to)321-344
Number of pages24
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2001


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