University of Hertfordshire

From the same journal

'Predicative minds: The social ontogeny of propositional thinking'. Radu J. Bogdan. MIT Press. 2009.

Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article review

  • D. Hutto
View graph of relations
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1141-1145
Journal publication date2010
Publication statusPublished - 2010


To predicate is to attribute one represented item of another—for example, to say of a book that it is exciting. Only human minds are predicative minds. But we are not natural-born predicators; we become so by a process of socialization into linguistic practices. That is the central hypothesis of this book. The book is divided into three parts. The first sets the stage, introducing a problem with all existing accounts of predication. Here Bogdan distinguishes acts of mere co-instantiation, in which two simultaneously represented items are held in mind together, from predication proper. He complains that traditional treatments—including those that might be provided by Fregeans, Fodorians, and Davidsonians—necessarily fall short of what is required for explaining the special sort of unity that predication requires. In a nutshell, this is because such accounts only deal with the formal and semantic features of mental representations, whereas—if Bogdan is correct—what is required is attention to the psychopragmatic features of predicative thinking as well.


"The definitive publisher-authenticated version of Hutto, D. (2010) ‘Review of 'Predicative minds : the social ontogeny of propositional thinking, by Bogdan, R.J.’ Mind 119 (476) pp.1141 - 1145 is available online at:" [Full text of this review is not available in the UHRA]

ID: 188046