A concept is a mental symbol, used to denote a class of things in the world. Concepts are mental representations that allows us to draw appropriate inferences about the type of entities we encounter in our everyday lives. Concepts do not encompass all mental representations, but are merely a subset of them. Concepts are the glue that bind entities in the world, and are distinct from 'conceptions', which are the beliefs that we hold about these entities. The use of concepts is necessary to cognitive processes such as categorization, memory, decision making, learning and inference.
Concepts are also sometimes construed as abstract entities. This debate concerns the ontological status of concepts - what they are really like. However, there is no reason to think concepts cannot be mental representations and we will continue with the above description, which is the most widely used in discussions in philosophy and psychology.
There is debate as to the relationship between concepts and natural language. However, it is necessary at least to begin by understanding that the concept "dog" is philosophically distinct from the things in the world grouped by this concept - or the reference class or extension. Concepts that can be equated to a single word are called "lexical concepts".
Study of concepts and conceptual structure falls into the disciplines of philosophy, psychology and cognitive science.
Read more about Concept: Etymology
Other articles related to "concept, concepts":
... called the frictional or structural unemployment rate) is a concept of economic activity developed in particular by Milton Friedman and Edmund Phelps in the 1960s, both ... In both cases, the development of the concept is cited as a main motivation behind the prize ... Reductions in the natural rate of unemployment must, according to the concept, be achieved through structural policies directed towards an economy's supply side ...
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... The valorisation or valorization of capital is a theoretical concept created by Karl Marx in his critique of political economy ... Similarly, Marx's specific concept refers both to the process whereby a capital value is conferred or bestowed on something, and to the increase in the value of a capital asset ... because it is recognized that it denotes a highly specific economic concept, i.e ...
... The term "concept" is traced back to 1554–60 (Latin conceptum - "something conceived"), but what is today termed "the classical theory of concepts" is the theory of Aristotle on ... The meaning of "concept" is explored in mainstream information science, cognitive science, metaphysics, and philosophy of mind ... information science contexts, especially, the term 'concept' is often used in unclear or inconsistent ways ...
... It has been argued that the concept of heterosexism is similar to the concept of racism in that both ideas promote privilege for dominant groups within a given ... For example, borrowing from the racial concept of white privilege, the concept of heterosexual privilege has been applied to benefits of (presumed) heterosexuality within society that ...
Famous quotes containing the word concept:
“Revolution as an ideal concept always preserves the essential content of the original thought: sudden and lasting betterment.”
—Johan Huizinga (18721945)
“Every new concept first comes to the mind in a judgment.”
—Charles Sanders Peirce (18391914)
“Teaching Black Studies, I find that students are quick to label a black person who has grown up in a predominantly white setting and attended similar schools as not black enough. ...Our concept of black experience has been too narrow and constricting.”
—bell hooks (b. c. 1955)