Muhammad Ali Khalidi

Department of Philosophy

Professor
Chair

Office: Ross Building, S431
Phone: 416-736-2100 Ext: 77575
Emailkhalidi@yorku.ca
Primary websitewww.yorku.ca/khalidi/

My main areas of research are in the philosophy of science (with an emphasis on cognitive science) and the philosophy of mind. I have been particularly focused on such mental phenomena as innateness, domain specificity, and concepts, and what role they play in contemporary cognitive science. I am also interested in scientific classification schemes and in the means of distinguishing artificial categories from real ones in both the natural and social sciences.

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In both areas of research, I have argued against essentialism and reductionism, while attempting to reconcile the scientific worldview with our commonsense understanding of phenomena. In the history of philosophy, I have researched and written on classical Arab-Islamic philosophy and have published an anthology of texts in translation from this neglected tradition. Recent courses at the graduate and undergraduate levels include: Philosophy of Social Science, Metaphysics, Core Theoretical Philosophy, Honours Seminar in Cognitive Science, Philosophy of Language, and Islamic Philosophy.

Area of Specialization

Philosophy

Degrees

Ph.D., Philosophy, Columbia University
M.A., Philosophy , Columbia University
B.S., Physics, American University of Beirut


Research Interests

Philosophy , Cognitive Science, Philosophy of Science, Philosophy of Mind and Language

All Publications

Books

Natural Categories and Human Kinds: Taxonomic Practices in the Natural and Social Sciences, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013.

(Editor and Translator) Medieval Islamic Philosophical Writings, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005

Journal Articles

“Crosscutting Psycho-Neural Taxonomies: The Case of Episodic Memory,” Philosophical Explorations 20 (2017), 191-208

“Mind-Dependent Kinds,” Journal of Social Ontology 2 (2016), 223-246

“Innateness as a Natural Cognitive Kind,” Philosophical Psychology 29 (2016), 319-333.

“Three Kinds of Social Kinds,” Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 90 (2015), 96-112.

“The Pitfalls of Microphysical Realism,” Philosophy of Science 78 (2011), 1156-1164

“Interactive Kinds,” British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 61 (2010), 335-360.

“How Scientific Is Scientific Essentialism?” Journal for General Philosophy of Science 40 (2009), 85-101

“Should We Eliminate the Innate? Reply to Griffiths and Machery,” Philosophical Psychology 22 (2009), 505-519

"Temporal and Counterfactual Possibility," Sorites 20 (2008), 37-42

“Innate Cognitive Capacities,” Mind & Language 22 (2007), 92-115

“Orientalisms in the Interpretation of Islamic Philosophy,” Radical Philosophy 135 (2006), 25-33

“Against Functional Reductionism in Cognitive Science,” International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 19 (2005), 319-333

“Al-Fārābī on the Democratic City,” British Journal for the History of Philosophy 11 (2003), 379-394

“Nature and Nurture in Cognition,” British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 53 (2002), 251-272

“Innateness and Domain Specificity,” Philosophical Studies 105 (2001), 191-210

"Natural Kinds and Crosscutting Categories," Journal of Philosophy 95 (1998), 33-50

"Incommensurability in Cognitive Guise," Philosophical Psychology 11 (1998), 29-43

"Averroes' Method of Re-Interpretation," International Philosophical Quarterly 38 (1998), 175-185

"Two Concepts of Concept," Mind & Language 10 (1995), 402-422

"Carving Nature at the Joints," Philosophy of Science 60 (1993), 100-113

Upcoming Courses

TermCourse NumberSectionTitleType 
Fall 2017 AP/PHIL4800 3.0  Core Theoretical Philosophy I SEMR  


My main areas of research are in the philosophy of science (with an emphasis on cognitive science) and the philosophy of mind. I have been particularly focused on such mental phenomena as innateness, domain specificity, and concepts, and what role they play in contemporary cognitive science. I am also interested in scientific classification schemes and in the means of distinguishing artificial categories from real ones in both the natural and social sciences.


In both areas of research, I have argued against essentialism and reductionism, while attempting to reconcile the scientific worldview with our commonsense understanding of phenomena. In the history of philosophy, I have researched and written on classical Arab-Islamic philosophy and have published an anthology of texts in translation from this neglected tradition. Recent courses at the graduate and undergraduate levels include: Philosophy of Social Science, Metaphysics, Core Theoretical Philosophy, Honours Seminar in Cognitive Science, Philosophy of Language, and Islamic Philosophy.

Area of Specialization

Philosophy

Degrees

Ph.D., Philosophy, Columbia University
M.A., Philosophy , Columbia University
B.S., Physics, American University of Beirut

Research Interests:

Philosophy , Cognitive Science, Philosophy of Science, Philosophy of Mind and Language

All Publications

Books

Natural Categories and Human Kinds: Taxonomic Practices in the Natural and Social Sciences, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013.

(Editor and Translator) Medieval Islamic Philosophical Writings, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005

Journal Articles

“Crosscutting Psycho-Neural Taxonomies: The Case of Episodic Memory,” Philosophical Explorations 20 (2017), 191-208

“Mind-Dependent Kinds,” Journal of Social Ontology 2 (2016), 223-246

“Innateness as a Natural Cognitive Kind,” Philosophical Psychology 29 (2016), 319-333.

“Three Kinds of Social Kinds,” Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 90 (2015), 96-112.

“The Pitfalls of Microphysical Realism,” Philosophy of Science 78 (2011), 1156-1164

“Interactive Kinds,” British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 61 (2010), 335-360.

“How Scientific Is Scientific Essentialism?” Journal for General Philosophy of Science 40 (2009), 85-101

“Should We Eliminate the Innate? Reply to Griffiths and Machery,” Philosophical Psychology 22 (2009), 505-519

"Temporal and Counterfactual Possibility," Sorites 20 (2008), 37-42

“Innate Cognitive Capacities,” Mind & Language 22 (2007), 92-115

“Orientalisms in the Interpretation of Islamic Philosophy,” Radical Philosophy 135 (2006), 25-33

“Against Functional Reductionism in Cognitive Science,” International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 19 (2005), 319-333

“Al-Fārābī on the Democratic City,” British Journal for the History of Philosophy 11 (2003), 379-394

“Nature and Nurture in Cognition,” British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 53 (2002), 251-272

“Innateness and Domain Specificity,” Philosophical Studies 105 (2001), 191-210

"Natural Kinds and Crosscutting Categories," Journal of Philosophy 95 (1998), 33-50

"Incommensurability in Cognitive Guise," Philosophical Psychology 11 (1998), 29-43

"Averroes' Method of Re-Interpretation," International Philosophical Quarterly 38 (1998), 175-185

"Two Concepts of Concept," Mind & Language 10 (1995), 402-422

"Carving Nature at the Joints," Philosophy of Science 60 (1993), 100-113


Teaching:

Upcoming Courses

TermCourse NumberSectionTitleType 
Fall 2017 AP/PHIL4800 3.0  Core Theoretical Philosophy I SEMR