Extended cognition and the space of social interaction

Consciousness and Cognition 20 (3):643-657 (2011)
Abstract
The extended mind thesis (EM) asserts that some cognitive processes are (partially) composed of actions consisting of the manipulation and exploitation of environmental structures. Might some processes at the root of social cognition have a similarly extended structure? In this paper, I argue that social cognition is fundamentally an interactive form of space management—the negotiation and management of ‘‘we-space”—and that some of the expressive actions involved in the negotiation and management of we-space (gesture, touch, facial and whole-body expressions) drive basic processes of interpersonal understanding and thus do genuine social-cognitive work. Social interaction is a kind of extended social cognition, driven and at least partially constituted by environmental (non-neural) scaffolding. Challenging the Theory of Mind paradigm, I draw upon research from gesture studies, developmental psychology, and work on Moebius Syndrome to support this thesis.
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References found in this work BETA
Peter Carruthers (1996). Simulation and Self-Knowledge: A Defence of the Theory-Theory. In Peter Carruthers & Peter K. Smith (eds.), Theories of Theories of Mind. Cambridge University Press. 22--38.
Jonathan Cole (1999). On'Being Faceless'. In Jonathan Shear & Shaun Gallagher (eds.), Models of the Self. Imprint Academic. 301.

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Citations of this work BETA
Joel Krueger (2012). Seeing Mind in Action. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 11 (2):149-173.
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