Composite Colour Categories and the Evolution of Systems of Colour Naming

  • Don Dedrick
Part of the Synthese Library book series (SYLI, volume 274)


So far I have stayed away from Berlin and Kay’s evolutionary claims. This is in part because the regularities and generalizations that have been discussed are independent of the evolutionary views and in part because Berlin and Kay’s own evolutionary claims are problematic. A number of writers (including Berlin and Kay) have emended the evolutionary ordering and the emended versions are much weaker than the original. But the strength or weakness of the evolutionary order is not the only issue. As we shall see, the claim that specific named colour categories are universal is suspect because of the nature of the emendations.


Colour Vision Colour Word Colour Naming Basic Colour Chapter Versus 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Don Dedrick
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of VictoriaCanada

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