from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The view that the mind is born with certain ideas or knowledge, as opposed to the idea of the "blank slate" or tabula rasa.


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

innate +‎ -ism


  • On the other hand, Descartes's exaltation of deduction and Leibniz's adoption of the mathematical method have their origin in that doctrine of innatism which is the opposite of empiricism.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 9: Laprade-Mass Liturgy

  • I'm not sure my argument on innatism is as wrong as you think - 'right' and 'wrong' only have any meaning when they refer to actions.

    On Thursday, the Legg report will be published along with...

  • In a veritable bookshelf of recently published volumes, he has argued for what might be called a soft innatism: a theory of mind that holds that certain concepts or ways of thinking are hardwired into our brains at birth.

    Speedlinking 9/12/07

  • This is the most fully developed theory of knowledge by any of the Cambridge Platonists, and the most extensive treatment of innatism by any seventeenth-century philosopher.

    The Cambridge Platonists

  • Few theorists of cognitive development today find either the extreme empiricism of Locke or the strong innatism of Plato or Descartes completely acceptable.

    The Philosophy of Childhood

  • Furthermore, as Gewirth explains the distinction between powers and dispositions, neither term is quite appropriate for Chomsky's own innatism.

    The Sleeping Chess Player

  • Chomsky's innatism is an empirical hypothesis that will have to be verified or refuted on empirical evidence; its truth or falsity does not derive from its Leibnizian ancestry.

    The Sleeping Chess Player

  • Quine holds that Chomsky's innatism is compatible with behaviorist and empiricist learning theories.

    The Sleeping Chess Player

  • This assimilation of empiricism and behaviorism to Leibniz's innatism is, however, based on a misunderstanding of the latter's statement.

    The Sleeping Chess Player

  • But the Leibnizian background, correctly understood, gives much stronger support to Chomsky's innatism.

    The Sleeping Chess Player


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