It is with great sadness that we report the passing of Jerry Fodor.  The world’s leading philosopher of mind, Jerry was at the forefront of the cognitive revolution, and a founder of the Rutgers Cognitive Science Center (RuCCS).  Please click here for more info about the conference RuCCS is organizing in honor of his memory on May 16 and 17, 2019.

Obituaries & Other Publications


Remembrances of Jerry can be sent to this email address: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Work address:

Department of Philosophy
Rutgers University
Davison Hall, Douglass Campus
New Brunswick, NJ 08903

Work phone: (203) 932-8878
Fax: (212) 315-2801
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Columbia College, 1952-56 
Princeton University, 1956-60 
Oxford University, 1960-61


A.B. Columbia University, 1956 (summa cum laude) 
Ph.D. (Philosophy) Princeton University, 1960

Awards and Honors: 

New York State Regents' Fellow 
Woodrow Wilson Fellow (Princeton University) 
Chancellor Greene Fellow (Princeton University) 
Fulbright Fellow (Oxford University) 
Fellow, Center for Advanced Study in The Behavioral Sciences 
Guggenheim Fellow

Honorary Societies: 

Phi Beta Kappa 
American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Professional career: 

Instructor, Dept. of Humanities, MIT,1959-60. 
Asst. Professor, Dept. of Humanities, MIT, 1961-1963. 
Associate Professor, Depts. of Philosophy & Psychology, MIT 1963-69 
Professor, Depts. of Philosophy and Psychology, MIT 1969-1986. 
Distinguished Professor, CUNY Graduate Center, 1986-1988. 
Adjunct Professor, CUNY Graduate Center, 1988-1994. 
State of New Jersey Professor of Philosophy, Rutgers University, 1988-

Visiting teaching positions at: 

University of Illinois 
Yale University 
SUNY Binghamton 
University of California, Berkeley 
University of Toronto



  • (1998) CONCEPTS; WHERE COGNITIVE SCIENCE WENT WRONG. The 1996 John Locke Lectures, Oxford University Press. 
  • (1994) THE ELM AND THE EXPERT, MENTALESE AND ITS SEMANTICS; The 1993 Jean Nicod Lectures. MIT Press. 
  • (1993) (ed. with E. Lepore) HOLISM: A CONSUMER UPDATE. Grazer Philosophische Studien, Vol 46. Rodopi, Amsterdam. 
  • (1992) with E. Lepore, HOLISM: A SHOPPER'S GUIDE,Blackwell. 
  • (1975) THE LANGUAGE OF THOUGHT, Thomas Y. Crowell Co. (Paperback, Harvard University Press.) 
  • (1974) with T. Bever and M. Garrett, THE PSYCHOLOGY OF LANGUAGE, McGraw Hill. 
  • (1968) PSYCHOLOGICAL EXPLANATION, Random House. 
  • (1964) with Jerrold Katz (eds.) THE STRUCTURE OF LANGUAGE, Prentice Hall.


  • (Forthcoming) Against Darwinism [pdf
    (Forthcoming) with E. Lepore, "Morphemes Matter"; RuCCS Tech Report 
    (Forthcoming) Doing Without What’s Within; Fiona Cowie’s Critique of Nativism. [html
    (Forthcoming)"Why we are so good at catching cheaters," COGNITION. 
    (Forthcoming)"Replies to critics" (response to discussion reviews of CONCEPTS) in MIND AND LANGUAGE 
    (Forthcoming) with E. Lepore, "Why Compositionality Won't Go Away: Reflections on Horwich's 'Deflationary' Theory" Rutgers Technical Report Series, 46, 1999. [pdf
    (Forthcoming) with E. Lepore, "Horwich on Compositionality," RATIO. 
  • (1999) with E. Lepore, "Impossible words?" LINGUISTIC INQUIRY, 30,3, 445-453. 
  • (1999) with E. Lepore, "All at Sea in Semantic Space; Paul Churchland on meaning similarity," JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY XCVI, no. 8, August. 381-403; Rutgers Technical Report Series 46, 1999 [pdf
  • (1998)"Review of E.O. Wilson CONSILIENCE," LONDON REVIEW OF BOOKS, 29 October. 
  • ---"Review of Pinker, S. HOW THE MIND WORKS and Plotkin, H. EVOLUTION IN MIND," (1998) LONDON REVIEW OF BOOKS, Jan. 22. 
  • (1998) with E. Lepore, "The Emptiness of The Lexicon, Critical Reflections on J. Pustejovsky's THE GENERATIVE LEXICON, in LINGUISTIC INQUIRY." LINGUISTIC INQUIRY, 29, 2, 269-288; RuCCS Tech Report
  • (1998) "Special Sciences; Still Autonomous after All These Years," in PHILOSOPHICAL PERSPECTIVES, 11, MIND, CAUSATION, AND WORLD, 149-163. 
  • (1996) with E. Lepore, "What Can't Be Evaluated Can't Be Evaluated, and It Can't Be Supervalued Either." JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY XCIII, pp. 516-536; RuCCS Tech Report
  • (1996) "Connectionism and the problem of systematicity (continued): why Smolensky's solution still doesn't work." COGNITION, 62, 109-119. 
  • (1996) "Deconstructing Dennett's Darwin," in MIND AND LANGUAGE, Vol.11, No.3, pp. 246-262. 
  • (1996) Review of R. Dawkins CLIMBING MOUNT IMPROBABLE, LONDON REVIEW OF BOOKS, Vol.18, No.8, 18 April. 
  • (1996) with E. Lepore, "The Red Herring and The Pet Fish", COGNITION, vol. 58, no.2 pp 253-270; RuCCS Tech Report 
  • (1996) with E. Lepore, "Churchland on State Space Semantics", in The Churchlands and their Critics, ed. Robert McCauley, Basil Blackwell, Oxford, 1996, 145-158. 
  • (1995) Review of Paul Churchland, THE ENGINE OF REASON, THE SEAT OF THE SOUL, TLS, August 25, pp 5-6. 
  • (1995) "Review of John Mcdowell MIND AND LANGUAGE, THE LONDON REVIEW OF BOOKS, 17, 8, April 20. 
  • (1994) with E. Lepore, "What is the connection principle?" J. PHILOSOPHY AND PHENOMENOLOGICAL RESEARCH, Vol LIV, no. 4 
  • (1994) "Concepts, A Potboiler" in COGNITION, Vol 50, 1. 
  • (1994) with E. Lepore, "Reply to Boghossian and Perry," PHILOSOPHICAL STUDIES. 73, 139-147. 
  • (1993) with E. Lepore, "Is Radical Interpretation Possible?," in The Philosophy of Donald Davidson, edited R. Stalker, Kluwer Press, 1993:1-23 [pdf
  • (1993) "Deja vu all over again; how Danto's aesthetics recapitulates the philosophy of mind," in ARTHUR DANTO AND HIS CRITICS, Mark Rollins (ed.), Blackwell. 
  • (1993) with E. Lepore, "Reply to critics," J. PHILOSOPHY AND PHENOMENOLOGICAL RESEARCH, LIII, 3, 673-682. 
  • (1993) "Unpacking A Dog, Review of Christopher Peacocke's, A Study of Concepts," LONDON REVIEW OF BOOKS, Vol. 15, #19, 7 October, pp. 14-15. 
  • (1993) with E. Lepore, "Reply to Block and Boghossian," MIND AND LANGUAGE, Vol. 8 No. 1, pp. 41-48. 
  • (1992) "A theory of the child's theory of mind," COGNITION, Vol 44 No. 3, 283-296. 
  • (1992) "Can there be a science of mind?" TLS, No. 4657 July 3 1992. 
  • (1991) (with E. Lepore) "Why meaning (probably) isn't conceptual role," LANGUAGE AND MIND, Vol. 6., No.4, 328-343. 
  • (1991) "The dogma that didn't bark; a fragment of a naturalized epistemology," MIND, Vol 100, April 1991, pp. 201-220. 
  • (1991) "Replies" in B. Loewer and G. Rey (eds), MEANING IN MIND, FODOR AND HIS CRITICS. 
  • (1991) "You Can Fool Some of The People All of The Time, Everything Else Being Equal; Hedged Laws and Psychological Explanations," MIND, Vol. 100, January 1991. 
  • (1991) "A Modal Argument for Narrow Content," JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY, LXXXVIII, No. 1 January 1991, pp. 1-22. 
  • (1990) "Information and representation," in P. Hanson (ed.) INFORMATION, LANGUAGE AND COGNITION, Vancouver Studies in Cognitive Science, Vol 1, University of British Columbia Press. 
  • (1990) "Substitution arguments and the individuation of beliefs" in Boolos, G. (ed.) MEANING AND METHOD, ESSAYS IN HONOR OF HILARY PUTNAM Blackwells, Oxford. 
  • (1990) "Reply to Dretske's `Does Meaning Matter?'" in Villanueva, E. (ed.) INFORMATION, SEMANTICS & EPISTEMOLOGY, Blackwell, Oxford. 
  • (1990) "Psychosemantics, or where do truth conditions come from" in W. Lycan (ed.) MIND AND COGNITION, Blackwell. 
  • (1990) with Brian McLaughlin, "Connectionism and the problem of systematicity; why Smolensky's solution doesn't work," COGNITION, 35, 183-204. 
  • (1989) "Review Essay: REMNANTS OF MEANING by Stephen Schiffer" J. PHILOSOPHY AND PHENOMENOLOGICAL RESEARCH, Vol L, No.2, pp. 409-423. 
  • (1989) "Making mind matter more," PHILOSOPHICAL TOPICS, Vol. LXVII, #1, pp. 59-79. 
  • (1989) "Why should the mind be modular?" in George, A. (ed.) REFLECTIONS ON CHOMSKY, Basil Blackwell, Ltd. Oxford. 
  • (1988) "A reply to Churchland's `Perceptual plasticity and theoretical neutrality'," PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE, 55, 188-198. 
  • (1988) with Z. Pylyshyn "Connectionism and cognitive architecture", COGNITION, Vol. 28, Nos. 1-2, pp.3-71. 
  • (1987) "Frames, Fridgeons, Sleeping Dogs and The Music of The Spheres" in Pylyshyn, Z. (ed.); The Robot's Dilemma; The Frame Problem in Artificial Intelligence, Ablex, Norwood, NJ. 
  • (1987) "Mental representation: An introduction" in Rescher, N. (ed.) SCIENTIFIC INQUIRY IN PHILOSOPHICAL PERSPECTIVE University Press of America, N.Y. 
  • (1987) "A situated grandmother?" MIND AND LANGUAGE, Vol. 2, No.1, 64-81. 
  • (1986) "Why paramecia don't have mental representations" in MIDWEST STUDIES IN PHILOSOPHY VOL. X, (P. French, T. Uehling, Jr. and H. Wettstein, eds.), University of Minnesota Press. 
  • (1986) "Information and association" NOTRE DAME JOURNAL OF FORMAL LOGIC, 27, 3, 307-323. 
  • (1985) "Banish disContent" in LANGUAGE MIND AND LOGIC (J. Butterfield, ed.) Cambridge University Press. 
  • (1985) "Fodor's guide to mental representation" MIND, Spring, 66-97. 
  • (1985) "Precise of 'Modularity of Mind'" THE BEHAVIORAL AND BRAIN SCIENCES, 8, 1-42. 
  • (1984) "Observation reconsidered" PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE, 51, 23-43. 
  • (1984) "Semantics, Wisconsin style" SYNTHESE, 59, 231-250. 
  • (1982) "Cognitive science and the twin-earth problem", NOTRE DAME JOURNAL OF FORMAL LOGIC, 23, 98-119. 
  • with Z. Pylyshyn (1981) "How direct is visual perception? Some reflection on Gibson's 'ecological approach'" COGNITION, 9, 139-196. 
  • (1981) "The mind-body problem" SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, January. 
  • with M. Garrett, E. Walker, and C. Parkes (1980) "Against definitions" COGNITION, 8, 263-367. 
  • (1980) "Methodological Solipsism considered as a research strategy in cognitive science" BEHAVIORAL AND BRAIN SCIENCES, 3, 63-109. 
  • (1980) "In reply to Philip Johnson-Laird" COGNITION, 7, 93-95. 
  • with J.D. Fodor (1980) "Functional structure, quantifiers and meaning postulates" LINGUISTIC INQUIRY, 11, 4. 
  • with A. Cutler (1979) "Semantic focus and sentence comprehension" COGNITION, 7, 49-59. 
  • (1978) "Propositional attitudes" THE MONIST, 61, 4, 501-523. 
  • (1978) "Three cheers for propositional attitudes" in SENTENCE PROCESSING (E. Cooper and E. Walker, eds) L. Erlbaum. 
  • (1978) "Tom Swift and his procedural grandmother" COGNITION, 6, 229-247. 
  • (1978) "Computation and reduction" in MINN. STUDIES IN THE PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE, VOL. 9, (W. Savage, ed.). 
  • (1977) "Mind" in ENCYCLOPEDIA EINAUDI, Torino, Italy. 
  • (1977) "The philosophy of psychology" in COLLIERS ENCYCLOPEDIA. 
  • with J.D. Fodor and M. Garrett (1975) "The psychological unreality of semantic representations" LINGUISTIC INQUIRY 6, 515-531. 
  • with M. Garrett and S. Brill (1975) "Pi ka pu: the perception of speech sounds by prelinguistic infants" PERCEPTION AND PSYCHOPHYSICS, 18, 74-78. 
  • (1974) "Special sciences" SYNTHESE, 28, 97-115. 
  • with N. Block (1972)"What psychological states are not" PHILOSOPHICAL REVIEW, 81 159-181. 
  • (1972) "Some reflections on L.S. Vygotsky's THOUGHT AND LANGUAGE," COGNITION, 1, 83-95. 
  • (1971) "Current approaches to syntax recognition" in THE PERCEPTION OF LANGUAGE (D. Horton and J. Jenkins, eds.) Chales E. Merrill Co. 
  • "Troubles about actions" SYNTHESE, 21, 298-319. 
  • (1970) "Three reasons for not deriving 'kill' from `cause to die' LINGUISTIC INQUIRY, 1, 429-438. 
  • (1969) "Meaning and convention in THE BLUE BOOK" in THE BUSINESS OF REASON (J. Macintosh and S. Coval, eds) Routledge and Kegan Paul. 
  • (1968) "The appeal to tacit knowledge in psychological explanation" JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY, 65, 627-640. 
  • with T. Bever and M. Garrett (1968) "A formal limitation of associationism" in VERBAL BEHAVIOR AND GENERAL BEHAVIOR THEORY (T. Dixon and D. Horton, eds.) Prentice Hall. 
  • with M. Garrett (1968) "Psychological theories and linguistic constructs" in VERBAL BEHAVIOR AND GENERAL BEHAVIOR THEORY (T. Dixon and T. Horton, eds.) Prentice Hall. 
  • with J. Jenkins and S. Saporta (1967) "Psycholinguistics and communication theory" in HUMAN COMMUNICATION THEORY (F. Dance, ed.) Holt, Rinehart and Winston. 
  • (1967) "How to learn to talk, some simple ways" in THE GENESIS OF LANGUAGE, (C. Reed, ed.) Appleton Century Crofts. 
  • with M. Garrett (1967) "Some syntactic determinants of sentential complexity," J. PERCEPTION AND PSYCHOPHYSICS, 2, 289-296. 
  • with M. Garrett and T. Bever (1966) "The active use of grammar in speech perception" J. PERCEPTION AND PSYCHOPHYSICS, 1, 30-32. 
  • with M. Garrett (1966) "Some reflections on competence and performance" in PSYCHOLINGUISTIC PAPERS (J. Lyons and R. Wales, eds.) Edinburgh University Press. 
  • (1966) "More about mediators: a reply to Berlyne and Osgood" JOURNAL OF VERBAL LEARNING AND VERBAL BEHAVIOR, 5, 412-415. 
  • (1966) "Could there be a theory of perception?" JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY, #63. 
  • (1965) "Some remarks on the philosophy of language" in ASPECTS OF CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN PHILOSOPHY (F. Donnell, ed.) Wurzburg, Physica-verlag. 
  • (1965) with C. Chihara "Operationalism and ordinary language" AMERICAN PHILOSOPHICAL QUARTERLY, 2, 281-295. 
  • (1965) with T. Bever and W. Weksel "Is linguistics empirical?" PSYCHOLOGICAL REVIEW, 72, 493-500. 
  • (1965) with T. Bever and W. Weksel "On the acquisition of syntax: a critique of contextual generalization" PSYCHOLOGICAL REVIEW, 72, 493-500. 
  • (1965) with T.G. Bever (1965) "The psychological reality of linguistic segments" JOURNAL OF VERBAL LEARNING AND VERBAL BEHAVIOR, 4, 414-420. 
  • (1965) "Could maning be an rm?" JOURNAL OF VERBAL LEARNING AND VERBAL BEHAVIOR, 4, 414-4. 
  • (1965) "Explanation in psychology" in PHILOSOPHY IN AMERICA (Max Black, ed.), Muirhead Library of Philosophy. 
  • with Jerrold Katz (1964) "A reply to Dixon's `A trend in semantics'" LINGUISTICS, 1, 19-29. 
  • (1964) "On knowing what we would say" PHILOSOPHICAL REVIEW, 73, 198-212. 
  • and R. Freed (1963) "Some types of ambiguous tokens" ANALYSIS, #24. 
  • (1963) with Jerrold Katz "The availability of what we say" PHILOSOPHICAL REVIEW, 73, 51-71. 
  • and Jerrold Katz (1963) "The structure of a semantic theory" LANGUAGE, 170-210. 
  • and Jerrold Katz (1962) "What's wrong with the philosophy of language?" INQUIRY, #39, 197-237. 
  • and R. Freed (1961) "Pains, puns, persons and pronouns" ANALYSIS #22. 
  • (1961) "Of words and uses" INQUIRY, #4. 
  • (1961) "Projection and paraphrase in semantics" ANALYSIS, 21. 
  • (1960) "What do you mean?" JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY, #57.



Click here for publications with Ernest Lepore.