Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Scientists and the folk have the same concepts

Neil Levya1

Florey Neuroscience Institutes, Carlton South 3053, Australia; and Oxford Centre for Neuroethics, Oxford, OX1 1PT, United Kingdom.


If Knobe is right that ordinary judgments are normatively suffused, how do scientists free themselves from these influences? I suggest that because science is distributed and externalized, its claims can be manipulated in ways that allow normative influences to be hived off. This allows scientists to deploy concepts which are not normatively suffused. I suggest that there are good reasons to identify these normatively neutral concepts with the folk concepts.