Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

No Functions for Rocks: Garson's Generalized Selected Effects Theory and the Liberality Problem


Schulte, Peter (2021). No Functions for Rocks: Garson's Generalized Selected Effects Theory and the Liberality Problem. Analysis, 81(2):369-378.

Abstract

In What Biological Functions Are and Why They Matter, Justin Garson offers a novel theory of biological functions, the generalized selected effects (GSE) theory.1 He presents the theory in a clear and comprehensive way, defends it against various objections and applies it to different areas of philosophy, including the philosophy of psychiatry, the debate about mechanisms and the debate about teleosemantic theories of mental content.2

Like other proponents of the aetiological approach to functions, Garson maintains that a trait’s biological functions are grounded in its selectional history. However, his GSE theory differs from standard versions of the aetiological approach – so-called selected effects (SE) theories – in a crucial respect: while SE theories assume that all biological functions must ultimately be grounded in phylogenetic processes of natural selection or other (closely analogous) processes of differential reproduction (Millikan 1984: 15–82, Neander 1991, Godfrey-Smith 1994...

Abstract

In What Biological Functions Are and Why They Matter, Justin Garson offers a novel theory of biological functions, the generalized selected effects (GSE) theory.1 He presents the theory in a clear and comprehensive way, defends it against various objections and applies it to different areas of philosophy, including the philosophy of psychiatry, the debate about mechanisms and the debate about teleosemantic theories of mental content.2

Like other proponents of the aetiological approach to functions, Garson maintains that a trait’s biological functions are grounded in its selectional history. However, his GSE theory differs from standard versions of the aetiological approach – so-called selected effects (SE) theories – in a crucial respect: while SE theories assume that all biological functions must ultimately be grounded in phylogenetic processes of natural selection or other (closely analogous) processes of differential reproduction (Millikan 1984: 15–82, Neander 1991, Godfrey-Smith 1994...

Statistics

Citations

Dimensions.ai Metrics
1 citation in Web of Science®
2 citations in Scopus®
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Downloads

20 downloads since deposited on 17 Feb 2022
13 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Philosophy
Dewey Decimal Classification:100 Philosophy
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Philosophy
Language:English
Date:3 August 2021
Deposited On:17 Feb 2022 08:48
Last Modified:26 Feb 2024 02:49
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:0003-2638
Additional Information:This is a pre-copy-editing, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in Analysis following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated version Peter Schulte, No Functions for Rocks: Garson’s Generalized Selected Effects Theory and the Liberality Problem, Analysis, Volume 81, Issue 2, April 2021, Pages 369–378 is available online at: https://doi.org/10.1093/analys/anab015
OA Status:Green
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1093/analys/anab015