Some of McCarthy's colleagues in neighboring departments, however, were more interested in how intelligence is implemented in humans (and other animals) first. Noam Chomsky and others worked on what became cognitive science, a field aimed at uncovering the mental representations and rules that underlie our perceptual and cognitive abilities. Chomsky and his colleagues had to overthrow the then-dominant paradigm of behaviorism, championed by Harvard psychologist B.F. Skinner, where animal behavior was reduced to a simple set of associations between an action and its subsequent reward or punishment. The undoing of Skinner's grip on psychology is commonly marked by Chomsky's 1959 critical review of Skinner's book Verbal Behavior, a book in which Skinner attempted to explain linguistic ability using behaviorist principles. Skinner's approach stressed the historical associations between a stimulus and the animal's response -- an approach easily framed as a kind of empirical statistical analysis, predicting the future as a function of the past.
In a special UpFront interview, renowned US academic and public intellectual Noam Chomsky sits down with Mehdi Hasan to discuss the implications of a Donald Trump presidency, on both domestic and global issues. "He certainly is off the spectrum. There's never been anything like him," says Chomsky, an award-winning author, who is witnessing the 16th president over the course of his lifetime. "He has no background at all in any political activities. Never held office, been interested in office.
The recent stock market bump and the positive economic outlook may be short-lived, according to renowned political philosopher Noam Chomsky. Last week, the MIT professor claimed the rally could be nearing its end and that he expects another economic crash due to President Donald Trump's cabinet choices. Chomsky questioned Trump's long-held claim that he's against the Washington establishment and specifically pointed to the president's cabinet, which included former Goldman Sachs executive and new Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, according to an interview posted by AlterNet. "Anti-establishment is kind of a joke," Chomsky concluded. "Take a look at Trump and take a look at who's appointed for the cabinet."
Chomsky has been known to vigorously defend and debate his views and opinions, in philosophy, linguistics, and politics. He has had notable debates with Jean Piaget, Michel Foucault, William F. Buckley, Jr., Christopher Hitchens, George Lakoff, Richard Perle, Hilary Putnam, Willard Quine, and Alan Dershowitz, to name a few. In response to his speaking style being criticized as boring, Chomsky said that "I'm a boring speaker and I like it that way.... I doubt that people are attracted to whatever the persona is.... People are interested in the issues, and they're interested in the issues because they are important."
Prominent scientist and philosopher Noam Chomsky said Tuesday the world faces great difficulties and possible threats from both nuclear war and climate change under President-elect Donald Trump. Chomsky, 87, stressed young people could reignite the middle class and labor movement while praising former Democratic presidential nominee Bernie Sanders. "The threats and dangers are very real. There are plenty of opportunities. And as we face them, again, particularly the younger people among you, we should never overlook the fact that the threats that we now face are the most severe that have ever arisen in human history," Chomsky told a crowd at Riverside Church in New York City.