Institut Jean Nicod

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PEACOCKE Christopher

Johnsonian Professor of Philosophy, Columbia University




Invité par l’Institut Jean-Nicod pour un cycle de trois conférences au Département d’Etudes Cognitives - Mai 2021





"Philosophical and Empirical Issues in the Perception of Music"

Colloquium de philosophie de Jean Nicod

Vendredi 14 mai 2021 de 11h à 13h

Résumé :

This talk will address the question of what it is for music to possess emotional and other psychological content ; and what it is not. It will discuss the relations of the approach suggested to other recent theories (Robinson, Schlenker). More generally, it will address the relations between constitutive philosophical theories on the one hand and both scientific and historical issues on the other. It will consider the relation of a constitutive account to autism and musical understanding ; to the visual perception by the audience of musical performers ; and to the structure of underlying representations involved in music perception in the mind-brain. Time permitting, it will also discuss the contributions constitutive philosophical accounts can make to the characterization of musical styles.


"Deductive Inference"

Mardi 25 mai 2021, de 11h30 à 12h30

Résumé :

What is it for a thinker to be making a deductive inference ? I propose an account that involves recognition of a distinctive kind of content, and operation on it, that underlies all deductive inference. The account explains the epistemic status of deductive inference. I contrast the account with the proposals of John Broom and Gilbert Ryle. Deductive inference cannot on this account be reduced to conceptual role. Nor can it be explained in terms of natural deduction systems or axiomatic formulations of logical reasoning. Acceptance and use of logical principles can be explained using the apparatus proposed. The account can also be input into an account of the vexed notion of justification.


"Two Kinds of Explanation"

Séminaire "Maps and Diagrams" (Roberto Casati)

Vendredi 28 mai 2021, de 12h à 14h

Résumé :

A series of examples illustrates a distinction between two kinds of explanation in psychology, between those that are content-structured, and those, while nevertheless involving mental representations, are not. The distinction is most salient in cases involving the mental representation of magnitudes, but I argue that it has application to multiple psychological phenomena. Sometimes phenomena that do not really have a content-structured explanation are presented as such – these are masqueraders. In a second part of the paper, in a series of Theses I draw out the consequences of recognition of the distinction, which range from a reconceptualization of issues about the nature of perceptual content to a vindication of a significant notion (contra Pylyshyn) of imagistic representation.



Christopher Peacocke est aussi par invité par l’Assemblée du Collège de France, sur proposition du Professeur François Recanati pour un cycle de conférences au Collège de France, en deux parties :



  • Mercredi 5 mai 2021 "What can be heard in the music : what, why, and how"
  • Mercredi 12 mai 2021 "Musical perception and agency"


  • Mercredi 26 mai 2021 "Factive norms and their significance"
  • Mercredi 2 juin 2021 "Moral realism"

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