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":
... 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 ...
... 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 ... 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 ... The meaning of "concept" is explored in mainstream information science, cognitive science, metaphysics, and philosophy of mind ... In computer and information science contexts, especially, the term 'concept' is often used in unclear or inconsistent ways ...
... Daewoo Musiro Chevrolet Trax Chevrolet Beat Concept Chevrolet Groove Chevrolet Orlando Chevrolet Aveo RS Concept Chevrolet Miray ...
... 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 recipients of the Nobel prize in economics ... 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 ...
Famous quotes containing the word concept:
“It is impossible to dissociate language from science or science from language, because every natural science always involves three things: the sequence of phenomena on which the science is based; the abstract concepts which call these phenomena to mind; and the words in which the concepts are expressed. To call forth a concept, a word is needed; to portray a phenomenon, a concept is needed. All three mirror one and the same reality.”
—Antoine Lavoisier (17431794)
“The nearer a conception comes towards finality, the nearer does the dynamic relation, out of which this concept has arisen, draw to a close. To know is to lose.”
—D.H. (David Herbert)
“The concept of a mental state is primarily the concept of a state of the person apt for bringing about a certain sort of behaviour.”
—David Malet Armstrong (b. 1926)