Annual Lecture Series (in-person)
Lunchtime Talks (in-person)
- This event has passed.
LTT: Devin Gouvea
October 11 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm EDT
Title: Essentially Dynamic Concepts
Abstract: Important biological concepts often display unruly behavior: there is consensus that they designate something important, but not how that ‘something’ should be defined, identified, or theorized—and the set of options changes over time. My talk will present an ongoing effort to make sense of this general phenomenon. First I sketch a flexible model of conceptual change, inspired by the work of W. B. Gallie on ethico-political and aesthetic concepts. Though Gallie explicitly exempted scientific concepts from his analysis, it turns out to be remarkably germane to their dynamics. Next I focus on the most important and distinctive component of my model: an “exemplary achievement” that takes the form of research relying on the concept. This achievement inspires but does not fix subsequent usage. I give some examples from the history of ‘homology’ and highlight the virtues of this notion for a theory of conceptual change. Time permitting, I will close by exploring the suggestive resonance between Gallie’s ‘exemplary achievement’ and one flavor of Kuhn’s ‘paradigm.
This talk will also be available live streamed on You Tube at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrRp47ZMXD7NXO3a9Gyh2sg.
- October 11
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm EDT
- Event Category:
- Lunch Time Talks 2022-2023
- 1117 Cathedral of Learning
4200 Fifth Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15260 United States