Innate Knowledge

  • Created by: Sarah
  • Created on: 12-05-12 18:53

Innate Knowledge

The following arguments evaluate the existence of innate knowledge, a type/branch of a priori knowledge, put forward by rationalists. 

1. Plato's form of beauty is innate as we cannot experience objective beauty, it is needed to link the different types of beauty that we experience e.g. a beautiful painting is very different to a beautiful face but the form of beauty links them.

-But, we all have a different concept of beauty, it is subjective rather than objective as plato suggests and is a reflection of cultural upbringing (culturally relative) rather than innately place in our minds, e.g. in western cultures, being tanned is seen as beautiful.

-Beyond these superficial ideas of beauty, we do have a universal and thus innate, concept of beauty e.g. symmetry is regarded in all cultures as beautiful.

2. Chomsky's language acquisition device claims that deep grammatical structure must be known innately as children are still able to develop language and speak grammatically despite the uncorrected errors they experience e.g. "A spider look there in the corner" rather than "there is a spider in the…


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