Categories

Categories are fundamental divisions of some subject-matter; categorization is the classification of information, objects, properties or relations into categories. Categories have corresponding concepts or may even be said to be concepts, depending on the extent to which one takes categories to be mind-dependent (i.e. having no existence apart from minds). Apart from the ontology of categories, category membership was traditionally thought to be determined by a set of necessary and sufficient conditions, however it is now evident that category membership is in some cases a matter of degree. Members of some categories (e.g. the category ' game' ) display overlapping features. Rather than a set of necessary and sufficient conditions, a prototype, or set of properties judged to be most commonly exhibited by members of the category, provides the standard for category membership. Members are determined by their degree of resemblance to the prototype.

Back to index.