Tag Archives: B. F. Skinner

Rational Mechanics and the Mind

I want to post one more time before getting back to a few last words on John Dewey and conscious evolution. I have been doing a little research into the development of modern physics because I think there is a useful analogy to be found there and applied to the discussion we have been having […]

Does anything like a mind exist?

I still have a few more posts on Dewey that I want to put up that lead to an exciting model of cultural evolution, but Carl’s comment to my last post inspired me to write something more about the mind. Carl pointed out how metaphorical my description was, presumably he is making the point that […]

William James, B.F. Skinner and the Stream of Consciousness Revisited

In an earlier post I described similarities between the ideas of John Dewey and B.F. Skinner, I now will to do the same with William James. Both James and Skinner dubbed their own philosophies “Radical.” James called his philosophy Radical Empiricism and Skinner called his Radical Behaviorism. And both used the term in part for […]

Is there any Intelligence in the Universe?

I have been reading more about Behaviorism, including the article that Carl sent us by Robert Epstein, so that we could get a little clearer here about exactly what we are looking into.  Maybe I will start with a few definitions of some of the basic learning mechanisms of Behaviorism. Classical Conditioning – Pavlov’s dog:  […]

Freewill, To Believe or Not To Believe

I saw that both Carl and Brian noticed my use of the phrase “caved in” in expressing the fact that I was not convinced about the Behaviorist view. There is so much fantastic insight in all of the comments that have gone up from all of you, but I wanted first to use this phrase […]

The Freewill of a Creative System

I am amazed by all of the insightful comments on my last post. It seems that many of us are comfortable with the idea that perhaps freewill is not a characteristic of an individual, but is somehow implied in the system of the individual and its environment. This is what Carl (our behaviorist commentor) has […]

The Indignity of B.F. Skinner

Warning: This post represents my very first thoughts about the Behaviorism of B.F. Skinner and is probably equally likely to offend both fans and foes alike. Those who follow this blog may realize that my friend and brilliant commentor Carl has got me reading B.F. Skinner. Skinner is the famous (and to some infamous) Harvard […]

John Dewey and B.F. Skinner

I have been thinking more and re-reading Dewey’s paper on the reflex arc and wanted to add a second post with fuller thoughts. At the end of my last post I mentioned that Dewey’s conception of a continuous “circuit” between stimulus and response was similar to the ideas of B.F. Skinner and that seems even more […]

Free Will: A case of mistaken identity?

My last two posts may have seemed like a diversion from the exciting discussion on the existence of human free will, (Take a look at the string of excellent comments by Carl and Ted Howard here.) but for me it was a chance to regroup and think about this challenging topic. What I have been […]