yaaqov

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yaaqov wrote (edited )

As far as I can tell, the entirety of your second paragraph, while raising really important points, needn't actually be a problem within discussion threads; people who, for example, don't have anything to add, or don't have the energy to contribute further, still can and do say things like "support", right in the types of threads that you seem to think preclude this possibility.

Indeed, five of the twelve comments in the original discussion thread that spawned this question were only a voice of support or objection, with no further amendments, eg "Support this", "yep yep", or "no". That looks a whole lot like voting from people who did not want to, need to, or were not able to otherwise contribute to the discussion.

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yaaqov wrote (edited )

Well, wouldn't the type of evidence that leads us to believe that humans have linguistic capacity be of the same type that leads us to believe that a non-human has linguistic capacity? It seems that Searle holds his language room to a different standard than he would a human speaker.

In fact, doesn't his view require a type of mind/body dualism in of itself? Doesn't Searle believe that philosophical zombies (which I understand to be something that extensionally acts exactly like a human but does not have consciousness) could logically exist? Isn't that itself dualistic?

I don't intend these questions to be rhetorical. I'm a total beginner in this territory.

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yaaqov wrote

What evidence is there that we perceive and comprehend language?

Taking another tack, syntactic rules (not exactly "pre-set", but acquired) are precisely what make up any speaker's syntactic competence . Of course a room can know a language, even if its parts don't! No individual subpart of my brain knows English, but I do.

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yaaqov wrote (edited )

Ooh well that makes sense that we'd differ here; I've never been convinced by the Chinese room argument. It's my position that the room (taken as a whole, including the operator inside the room, but not the operator individually) does (or can, at least) know language.

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yaaqov wrote

Thanks for the explanation. The apple pie scenario, especially, seems to make sense, at least in my current thinking. I'll say this, though—isn't it the case that every society has always had doctors/practitioners of medicine? More generally, it seems to be the case that the motivation for becoming an expert in any particular field can be tied to some combination of the societal need for those experts, and personal interest. Under this view, people become doctors primarily so that their communities stay healthy, to put it in other words.

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yaaqov wrote

I think many of us are okay with having a doctor treated better by the community than a janitor.

Can you expand on this? On the face of it, I can't agree with this assertion at all, and I wouldn't have expected most people here to be able to, either.

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yaaqov wrote (edited )

The society I live in puts an enormous, and unevenly spread, amount of pressure on people—those read as women especially—to conform to beauty standards. As long as that's true, I'm not really interested in placing a value judgement—positive (e.g., 'exercising personal freedom') or negative (e.g., 'sending a bad message about beauty')—on the actions or reactions of the people most vulnerable to the violence that patriarchy musters for nonconformity.