Publications of Place that refer to Skinner (1957). Verbal  behavior.

Lecture 13: Mentalist explanations - epistemology and ontology (30/1/1974). Section 3
Abstract:
The nature of the evidence for mentalist explanations. The ontological commitments of mentalist explanations
[References]  
Download: Amsterdam Lecture 13.pdf

Lecture 28: The logical and functional aspects of language with special reference to moral discourse (12/6/1974). Section 8
Abstract:
The pragmatic or functional aspect of language. Skinner on language behaviour. Ethical utterances. Blaming as an aggressive act and an aversive event. The acceptance and avoidance of blame. Domestic and political quarrels.
[References]  
Download: Amsterdam Lecture 28.pdf

Place, U. T. (1973-12-12). Lecture 10: Action & movement. (12/12/1973). Section 3
Abstract:
Common sense psychology and the explanation of behaviour. The concept of action
[References]  
Download: Amsterdam Lecture 10.pdf

Place, U. T. (1977b). Filosofie, psychologie en filosofische psychologie. In K. Soudijn, & H. Bergman (Eds.), Ontwikkelingen in de psychologie (pp. 23-38). Boom/Intermediair.
Note:
Translated in Dutch and edited by Karel Soudijn.
[References]  
Download: 1977b Philosophy, Psychology and Philosophical Psychology.pdf

Place, U. T. (1978a). Psychological paradigms and behaviour modification. De Psycholoog, 13, 611-621.
Abstract:
The application of Kuhn's concept of "incommensurable paradigms" to the science of psychology is discussed. Two such paradigms, the behaviorist or behavior analytic paradigm and the cognitive/mentalist paradigm, are distinguished. It is suggested that the choice of paradigm will depend on the method of behavior modification to be employed. If behavior is to be modified by stimulus control and contingency management, a version of the behaviorist paradigm will be selected. If behavior is to be modified by changing the individual's self-directed verbal behavior, the mentalist/cognitive paradigm is to be preferred.
Note:
An earlier version of this paper was presented to a conference of the European Association for Behavioural Therapy at the Central Hotel, London Heathrow Airport in July 1974 and was in 1978 published in De Psycholoog, in English The Psychologist, a journal of the Dutch Society of Psychology. The present revision is from 1986.
[References]  [1 referring publications by Place]  
Download: 1978a 1986 Psychological Paradigms and Behavior Modification - revised version.pdf

Place, U. T. (1981a). Skinner's Verbal Behavior I - why we need it. Behaviorism, 9, 1-24. www.jstor.org/stable/27758970
Abstract:
To explain behaviour in terms of intension­al or mentalistic concepts is to explain the behaviour in question on the assump­tion of a consistent and rational connection between what the agent does and what he says or what is said to him and that therefore any general account of verbal or linguistic behaviour which employs such concepts is necessarily circular, since it explains the acquisition of linguistic skills on the assumption that the speaker already possesses such skills. It follows that this circularity can only be avoided by developing a theory of verbal or linguistic behaviour which is stated entirely in a nonintensional or extensional language. At the present time, the most developed conceptual system for description and explanation of the behav­iour of organisms at the molar level in purely extensional terms is that provided by the so-called ‘Radical Behaviorism’ of B. F. Skinner and his followers. Fur­thermore, in his book Verbal Behavior Skinner (1957) has used this conceptual framework to develop a theory of verbal or linguistic behaviour which repre­sents the most ambitious attempt made so far to formulate a theory of linguistic behaviour in nonintensional or extensional terms.
Note:
Revised version is from 1999.
[References]  [Is cited by]  [7 referring publications by Place]  
Download: 1981a 1999 Skinner's Verbal Behavior I - Why We Need It - revised version.pdf

Place, U. T. (1981b). Skinner's Verbal Behavior II - what is wrong with it. Behaviorism, 9, 131-152. www.jstor.org/stable/27758982
Abstract:
Skinner's Verbal Behavior as it stands suffers from four major defects. (1) Skinner fails to do justice to the distinction between words which are the repeated and repeatable units of verbal behaviour, but which have a function only in so far as they contribute to the function of the sentences in which they occur, and the sentences themselves which are the functional units of verbal behaviour, but which are seldom repeated word for word either in the mouth of the speaker or in the hearing of the listener. (2) The account given by Skinner of the listener's response to the verbal operant and of the concept of "the discriminative stimulus" which he deploys in this connection is seriously inadequate. (3) Skinner's concept of "the tact" involves a confusion between tacts as words and tacts as sentences. Tacts as words, i.e. names and general terms, designate recurrent features of the common stimulus environment of speaker and listener, both general and particular and contrast with autoclitic words whose function is purely intra-sentential. Tacts as sentences on the other hand are functionally complete verbal operants corresponding to the grammatical concept of an assertion, which act for the benefit of the listener and contrast with mands, sentence utterances corresponding to the imperatives and interrogatives of grammar and logic, which typically act for the benefit of the speaker. (4) Skinner's account fails to do justice to the all-important logical distinction between those tact sentence utterances or assertions which are true and on which the listener can consequently rely and those which are false and therefore unreliable as a source of information from the standpoint of the listener.
[References]  [Is cited by]  [6 referring publications by Place]  
Download: 1981b Skinner’s Verbal Behavior II – what is wrong with it.pdf

Place, U. T. (1982). Skinner's Verbal Behavior III - how to improve Parts I and II. Behaviorism, 10, 117-136. www.jstor.org/stable/27759002
[References]  [2 referring publications by Place]  
Download: 1982 Skinner's Verbal Behavior III - How to Improve Parts I and II

Place, U. T. (1983b). Behavioural contingency semantics [Conference presentation abstract]. In P. Simons (Ed.), Abstracts of the 7th International Congress of Logic, Methodology and Philosophy of Science, Vol. 2, Sections 5 and 12 (pp. 342-345). J. Huttegger OHG.
Note:
Presentation given at the 7th International Congress of Logic, Methodology and Philosophy of Science held in Salzburg, July 11th-16th 1983. In the downloads two documents are made available. One is an extended abstract, in actual fact a 4 pages summary as published in the proceedings of the conference and second is the text of the presentation. In the abstract Place tried to show how a later strand in Skinner's thinking represented by his 1969 book Contingencies Reinforcement, particularly the operant analysis of problem solving can be developed in such a way as to make good all the important deficiencies in the account given by Skinner in Verbal Behavior and what are mercilessly exposed by Chomsky in his 1959 Review. In the presentation Place discusses the reasons why a behavioural account of language acquisition and language use is to be preferred to the alternative theories belonging to the tradition that stems from Chomsky.
[References]  
Download: 1983b Behavioural Contingency Semantics. The Abstract.pdf  1983b Behavioural Contingency Semantics. The Presentation.pdf

Place, U. T. (1983d). Skinner's Verbal Behavior IV - how to improve Part IV, Skinner's account of syntax. Behaviorism, 11, 163-186. www.jstor.org/stable/27759026
[References]  [7 referring publications by Place]  
Download: 1983d Skinner's Verbal Behavior IV - How to Improve Part IV - Skinner's Account of Syntax.pdf

Place, U. T. (1985a). A response to Sundberg and Michael. VB News, 3, 38-45. [Reprinted in The Analysis of Verbal Behavior, 3, 41-47]
[References]  [Is reply to]  [4 referring publications by Place]  
Download: 1985a A Response to Sundberg and Michael.pdf

Place, U. T. (1985d). Three senses of the word "tact". Behaviorism, 13, 63-74. www.jstor.org/stable/27759058
[References]  [Is cited by]  [7 referring publications by Place]  [Is replied by]  
Download: 1985d Three Senses of the Word 'Tact'.pdf  1985d Supplement to Three Senses of the Word 'Tact'.pdf complete table with all occurrences of the word 'tact' in Skinner's Verbal Behavior

Place, U. T. (1985e). Three senses of the word "tact" - a reply to Professor Skinner. Behaviorism, 13, 155-156.
[References]  [Is reply to]  
Download: 1985e Three Senses of the Word 'Tact' - A Reply to Professor Skinner.pdf

Place, U. T. (1986a). Ethics as a system of behavior modification. In L. J. Parrott, & P. N. Chase (Eds.), Psychological Aspects of Language: The West Virginia Lectures (Chapter 6, pp.157-178). Charles C. Thomas.
[References]  [Is cited by]  [Is replied by]  
Download: 1986a Ethics as Behavior Modification - revised version.pdf revised and two footnotes added after publication of the book

Place, U. T. (1987a). Skinner re-skinned. In S. Modgil, & C. Modgil (Eds.), B. F. Skinner, Consensus and Controversy (Part XI, Skinner and the 'Virtus dormitiva' argument, pp. 235-243). Falmer Press.
Abstract:
In 'Skinner Skinned' Dennett (1978, chapter 4) discusses two arguments, the virtus dormitiva and intentionality arguments, which he sees as the only solid ground underlying the various arguments which Skinner gives for repudiating the use of mentalistic explanations in a scientific psychology; and of these he endorses only the intentionality argument. I argue (a) that what Skinner finds objectionable in mentalistic idioms is their dispositional character, (b) that both the virtus dormitiva and intentionality argument are arguments against the use of dispositional property ascriptions in scientific explanation, and (c) that, since dispositional property ascriptions are essential to any causal explanation, Dennett has failed to provide any good reason for endorsing Skinner's repudiation of mentalism. It is suggested that mentalism is objectionable only insofar it involves the use of idioms which presuppose what Skinner (1969) calls 'rule-governed' behaviour to explain behaviour that is 'contingency-shaped'.
[References]  [Is cited by]  [1 referring publications by Place]  [Is replied by]  
Download: 1987a Skinner Re-skinned.pdf

Place, U. T. (1987b). Skinner re-placed. In S. Modgil, & C. Modgil (Eds.), B. F. Skinner, Consensus and Controversy (Part XI, Skinner and the 'Virtus dormitiva' argument, pp. 249-251). Falmer Press.
[References]  [Is reply to]  
Download: 1987b Skinner Re-placed.pdf

Place, U. T. (1988e). The problem of mental content from the standpoint of linguistic empiricism [Presentation prepared for the Course on Functionalism and Content, Inter-university Post-graduate Centre, Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia (since 1991 Croatia), 7-15 September 1988] Inter-university Post-graduate Centre.
[References]  
Download: 1988e The Problem of Mental Content from the Standpoint of Linguistic Empiricism .pdf

Place, U. T. (1988f). Consciousness as an information processing system. [Paper presented to the Inaugural Symposium of the Mind-Body Group, Second Annual Conference of the History and Philosophy of Psychology Section of the British Psychological Society, University of Leeds, April 1988].
[References]  [1 referring publications by Place]  
Download: 1988f Consciousness as an Information Processing System.pdf

Place, U. T. (1991k). From syntax to reality: the picture theory of meaning [Discussion paper presented to a small conference on 'Footprints of the Brain in the Syntax of Natural Language' at the Neurosciences Institute, New York, February 1991].
[References]  [1 referring publications by Place]  
Download: 1991k From Syntax to Reality - the Picture Theory of Meaning.pdf revised version from 1999

Place, U. T. (1992c). Eliminative connectionism and its implications for a return to an empiricist/behaviorist linguistics. Behavior and Philosophy, 20, 21-35. www.jstor.org/stable/27759268
Abstract:
For the past three decades linguistic theory has been based on the assumption that sentences are interpreted and constructed by the brain by means of computational processes analogous to those of a serial-digital computer. The recent interest in devices based on the neural network or parallel distributed processor (PDP) principle raises the possibility ("eliminative connectionism") that such devices may ultimately replace the S-D computer as the model for the interpretation and generation of language by the brain. An analysis of the differences between the two models suggests that that the effect of such a development would be to steer linguistic theory towards a return to the empiricism and behaviorism which prevailed before it was driven by Chomsky towards nativism and mentalism. Linguists, however, will not be persuaded to return to such a theory unless and until it can deal with the phenomenon of novel sentence construction as effectively as its nativist/mentalist rival.
[References]  [4 referring publications by Place]  
Download: 1992c Eliminative Connectionsm -Its Implications for a Return to an Empiricist-Behaviorist Linguistics.pdf

Place, U. T. (1992j). Towards a reconciliation between the associationist and radical behaviorist traditions in the experimental analysis of behavior. [Unpublished paper. Presented under the title 'The three term contingency as a link between the associationist and radical behaviorist traditions in the experimental analysis of behavior' as Invited Address to the First International Congress on Behaviorism and the Sciences of Behavior, Guadalajara, Mexico, 6th October 1992].
Abstract:
It is an implication of the Law of Non-Contradiction that two incompatible descriptions of the same class of phenomena cannot both be true. This suggests that the future for radical behaviorism must lie in achieving a reconciliation with other disciplines and approaches studying the same or closely related phenomena. The approach known as "associative learning theory" shares a common data basis with radical behaviorism in the area of the experimental analysis of animal behavior. It is separated from radical behaviorism by a different view of the nature of what is learned. According to the radical behaviorist, under certain antecedent conditions (discriminative stimulus + establishing condition) an organism learns to emit a response. According to associative learning theory what is learned is an association between a pair of consecutive stimulus events. When presented with the first member of the pair, the organism learns to "predict" or "expect" the second member of the pair. Until recently, the principal application of this principle was Rescorla and Wagner's (1972) analysis of  Pavlovian (respondent) conditioning. More recently, Adams and Dickinson's (1981) reinforcer-devaluation experiment has led associationists to pay more attention to instrumental (operant) learning. It has also opened up an interesting divergence of views between Dickinson (1988; Heyes and Dickinson, 1991; Dickinson & Balleine, forthcoming) who takes it as evidence of a discontinuity between respondent conditioning, which he interprets in terms of the establishment of mechanical associations, and operant learning which he interprets in terms of the ‘beliefs’ and ‘desires’ of philosophical action theory, and Rescorla (1991) who uses it as evidence for an interpretation of operant learning based on the same principles of stimulus-stimulus association invoked by Rescorla and Wagner to account for respondent conditioning. Standing in the way of a reconciliation between radical behaviorism and associative learning theory are the misgivings of the former about the use made by the latter of ‘mentalistic’ concepts, such as ‘expect,’ ‘anticipate,’ and ‘predict.’ These misgivings may be allayed if attention is paid to the results of applying to such concepts the technique, known as ‘conceptual analysis,’ developed by Wittgenstein (1953; 1958) and the philosophers of the Oxford ‘ordinary language’ school. A recent application of this technique to the linguistic phenomenon known variously as ‘intentionality’ or ‘intensionality’ shows that it consists of two distinct varieties of ‘referential anomaly’ which ‘infect’ the grammatical objects of certain verbs. In one case, the grammatical object is used to indicate a range of possible events any one of which, if it were to occur, would constitute a manifestation or satisfaction of a disposition. In the other case, the grammatical object functions as a quotation of what the agent either has said or might be expected to say or have said. Referential anomaly of the dispositional kind is both unavoidable and benign, but the use of quotations to characterize behavioral dispositions is acceptable for scientific purposes only in those cases where the behavior in question is in fact subject to linguistic control. Since the grammatical object of the verbs ‘know,’ ‘believe’ and ‘think,’ as they occur in belief/desire explanations, takes the form of an embedded indicative sentence in oratio obliqua or indirect reported speech, Dickinson's explanation of instrumental/operant learning in animals involves the scientifically unacceptable metaphor of linguistic initiation and control. Rescorla's theory, on the other hand, requires nothing more than that the organism learn to ‘expect’ or ‘anticipate’ an event (the outcome), given the combination of an antecedent discriminative stimulus and the stimulus constituted by the incipient emission of the response which it evokes. In this case the anomaly of reference in the noun phrase which occurs as the grammatical object of the verb reflects its use as a device for indicating a range of possible outcomes any one of which, if it occurred, would fulfill and confirm the expectation which it specifies.
Note:
UTP made changes to the text of the presentation in 1995 and in 1999.
[References]  
Download: 1992j 1999 Towards a Reconciliation between the Ascociationist and Redical Behaviorist Traditions in the Experimental Analysis of Behavior.pdf

Place, U. T. (1994a). Connectionism and the resurrection of behaviourism. Acta Analytica, 9(12), 65-79.
Abstract:
The demise of behaviourism is traced to the advent of the serial-digital computer as a model for the functioning of the brain. With the advent of a new model in the shape of the parallel distributed processor (PDP) or connectionist network, the resurrection of behaviourism can be predicted. The relation between the two models is explained in terms of Skinner's (1966) distinction between "contingency-shaped" (modelled by the PDP) and "rule-governed" behaviour. Rule-governed behaviour in Skinner's sense is behaviour controlled by a verbal/symbolic "specification" of the relevant contingencies. The S-D computer is a device designed by a PDP (the human brain) to compensate for its own slowness and inefficiency in constructing and manipulating such symbolic specifications.
[References]  
Download: 1994a Connectionism and the Resurrection of Behaviorism.pdf

Place, U. T. (1997d). Rescuing the science of human behavior from the ashes of socialism. Psychological Record, 47, 649-659. doi:10.1007/BF03395251
Abstract:
The discredit into which the socialist ideal has fallen as a consequence of recent political events calls into question, not just the viability of a particular political and economic system but, the very idea that the social order can be improved by applying principles derived from the scientific study of human social behavior. Before the collapse of socialism, the idea of a science of human behavior, construed in biological terms as a branch of the science of the behavior of free-moving living organisms in general, had been undermined by Chomsky's (1959) repudiation of the behaviorist project to construct a science of language (verbal behavior) based on principles derived from the study of animal learning. I contend that only by reinstating the link between linguistics and the study of animal learning can confidence be restored in the possibility of a genuine science of human behavior with application to the problem of constructing a better social order.
[References]  [1 referring publications by Place]  
Download: 1997d Rescuing the Science of Human Behavior from the Ashes of Socialism.pdf

Place, U. T. (1998b). Sentence and sentence structure in the analysis of verbal behavior. The Analysis of Verbal Behavior, 15, 131-133. doi:10.1007/BF03392935
[References]  
Download: 1998b Sentence and Sentence Structure in the Analysis of Verbal Behavior.pdf

Place, U. T. (1998d). Behaviourism as a standpoint in linguistics. Connexions, (4), 26-30. www2.open.ac.uk/arts/journals/connexions/Connexions_4.pdf
[References]  
Download: 1998d Behaviourism as a Standpoint in the Science of Linguistics.pdf

Place, U. T. (1999h). The picture theory of meaning: A rehabilation [Conference presentation; presented to the IUC Conference on Epistemology, Bled, Slovenia, 31st May - June 5th 1999].
Abstract:
I argue the case for a rehabilitation of the "picture theory" of the meaning of sentences expounded by Wittgenstein (1921/1971) in the Tractatus, but abandoned by him in moving from his earlier to his later philosophy. This rehabilitation requires the replacement of 'facts' as the objects which sentences depict by 'situations' (Barwise and Perry 1983) and the recognition that the situation depicted by a sentence is an "intentional object" (Brentano 1871/1995). It also implies a different view of the way his sense (Sinn)/reference (Bedeutung) distinction should be applied to the meaning of sentences from that maintained by Frege (1892/1960) himself. Such a theory opens the door to a thorough-going empiricist theory of the acquisition of both concepts and sentence structure.
[References]  
Download: 1999h The Picture Theory of Meaning - A Rehabilitation.pdf

Place, U. T. (2000c). The role of the hand in the evolution of language. Psycoloquy, 11(7), January 23. www.cogsci.ecs.soton.ac.uk/cgi/psyc/newpsy?11.007
Abstract:
This article has four sections. Section I sets out four principles which should guide any attempt to reconstruct the evolution of an existing biological characteristic. Section II sets out thirteen principles specific to a reconstruction of the evolution of language. Section III sets out eleven pieces of evidence for the view that vocal language must have been preceded by an earlier language of gesture. Based on those principles and evidence, Section IV sets out seven proposed stages in the process whereby language evolved: (1) the use of mimed movement to indicate an action to be performed, (2) the development of referential pointing which, when combined with mimed movement, leads to a language of gesture, (3) the development of vocalisation, initially as a way of imitating the calls of animals, (4) counting on the fingers leading into (5) the development of symbolic as distinct from iconic representation, (6) the introduction of the practice of question and answer, and (7) the emergence of syntax as a way of disambiguating utterances that can otherwise be disambiguated only by gesture.
[References]  [Is cited by]  [1 referring publications by Place]  [Is replied by]  
Download: 2000c The Role of the Hand in the Evolution of Language.pdf