Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Cambridge Journals Online - CUP Full-Text Page
Behavioral and Brain Sciences (2009), 32:221-223 Cambridge University Press
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2009

Open Peer Commentary

There is more to thinking than propositions

Derek C. Penna1, Patricia W. Chenga1, Keith J. Holyoaka1, John E. Hummela3 and Daniel J. Povinellia2

a2 Cognitive Evolution Group, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, New Iberia, LA 70560
a3 Department of Psychology, University of Illinois, Champaign, IL 61820
Article author query
penn dc [PubMed]  [Google Scholar]
cheng pw [PubMed]  [Google Scholar]
holyoak kj [PubMed]  [Google Scholar]
hummel je [PubMed]  [Google Scholar]
povinelli dj [PubMed]  [Google Scholar]


We are big fans of propositions. But we are not big fans of the “propositional approach” proposed by Mitchell et al. The authors ignore the critical role played by implicit, non-inferential processes in biological cognition, overestimate the work that propositions alone can do, and gloss over substantial differences in how different kinds of animals and different kinds of cognitive processes approximate propositional representations.

The propositional nature of human associative learning Chris J. Mitchell, Jan De Houwer and Peter F. Lovibond School of Psychology, University of New South Wales, Kensington 2052, Australia; Department of Psychology, Ghent University, Henri Dunantlaan 2, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium">; School of Psychology, University of New South Wales, Kensington 2052, Australia">