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Evolving Enactivism: Basic Minds Meet Content

Cambridge, MA, USA: MIT Press (2017)

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  1. Intelligence Involves Intensionality: An Explanatory Issue for Radical Enactivism.Silvano Zipoli Caiani - 2022 - Synthese 200 (2):1-23.
    How can we explain the intelligence of behaviors? Radical enactivists maintain that intelligent behaviors can be explained without involving the attribution of representational contents. In this paper, I challenge this view by providing arguments showing that the intelligence of a behavior is reliant on ways of presenting the relative purpose and the environment in which that behavior is performed. This involves that a behavior is intelligent only if intesional contents are ascribed to the related agent. Importantly, this conclusion also concerns (...)
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  • Radicalizing Numerical Cognition.Karim Zahidi - 2020 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):529-545.
    In recent decades, non-representational approaches to mental phenomena and cognition have been gaining traction in cognitive science and philosophy of mind. In these alternative approach, mental representations either lose their central status or, in its most radical form, are banned completely. While there is growing agreement that non-representational accounts may succeed in explaining some cognitive capacities, there is widespread skepticism about the possibility of giving non-representational accounts of cognitive capacities such as memory, imagination or abstract thought. In this paper, I (...)
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  • On Representation Hungry Cognition.Farid Zahnoun - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):267-284.
    Despite the gaining popularity of non-representationalist approaches to cognition, it is still a widespread assumption in contemporary cognitive science that the explanatory reach of representation-eschewing approaches is substantially limited. Nowadays, many working in the field accept that we do not need to invoke internal representations for the explanation of online forms of cognition. However, when it comes to explaining higher, offline forms of cognition, it is widely believed that we must fall back on internal-representation-invoking theories. In this paper, I want (...)
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  • Toward an Embodied, Embedded Predictive Processing Account.Elmarie Venter - 2021 - Frontiers in Psychology 12.
    In this paper, I argue for an embodied, embedded approach to predictive processing and thus align the framework with situated cognition. The recent popularity of theories conceiving of the brain as a predictive organ has given rise to two broad camps in the literature that I call free energy enactivism and cognitivist predictive processing. The two approaches vary in scope and methodology. The scope of cognitivist predictive processing is narrow and restricts cognition to brain processes and structures; it does not (...)
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  • The Embedded View, its Critics, and a Radically Non-Representational Solution.Thomas van Es - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):195-211.
    Whether perception involves the manipulation of representations is currently heavily debated. The embedded view advanced by Nico Orlandi seeks a middle passage between representationalism and radical enactivism. In this paper I argue for a non-representational take on EV. I argue that this is the best way to resolve the objections EV has received from both representationalists and non-representationalists. I analyze this debate, and distinguish four sorts of objections: the objection of the wrongfully cut middleman, the argument against explanatory exclusionism, the (...)
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  • Situated imagination.Ludger van Dijk & Erik Rietveld - forthcoming - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences:1-23.
    Imagination is often considered the pinnacle of representational cognition. Looking at the concrete details of imagining in context, this paper aims to contribute to the emerging literature that is challenging this representational view by offering a relational and radically situated alternative. On the basis of observing architects in the process of making an architectural art installation, we show how to consider imagination not as de-contextualized achievement by an individual but as an opening up to larger-scale “affordances,” i.e. the unfolding possibilities (...)
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  • Reasons for pragmatism: affording epistemic contact in a shared environment.Ludger van Dijk & Erik Myin - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 18 (5):973-997.
    Theorizing about perception is often motivated by a belief that without a way of ensuring that our perceptual experience correctly reflects the external world we cannot be sure that we perceive the world at all. Historically, coming up with a way of securing such epistemic contact has been a foundational issue in psychology. Recent ecological and enactive approaches challenge the requirement for perception to attain epistemic contact. This article aims to explicate this pragmatic starting point and the new direction of (...)
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  • Rules as Resources: An Ecological-Enactive Perspective on Linguistic Normativity.Jasper C. van den Herik - 2021 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 20 (1):93-116.
    In this paper, I develop an ecological-enactive perspective on the role rules play in linguistic behaviour. I formulate and motivate the hypothesis that metalinguistic reflexivity – our ability to talk about talking – is constitutive of linguistic normativity. On first sight, this hypothesis might seem to fall prey to a regress objection. By discussing the work of Searle, I show that this regress objection originates in the idea that learning language involves learning to follow rules from the very start. I (...)
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  • Minimizing prediction errors in predictive processing: from inconsistency to non-representationalism.Thomas van Es - 2020 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 19 (5):997-1017.
    Predictive processing is an increasingly popular approach to cognition, perception and action. It says that the brain is essentially a hierarchical prediction machine. It is typically construed in a representationalist and inferentialist fashion so that the brain makes contentful inferences on the basis of representational models. In this paper, I argue that the predictive processing framework is inconsistent with this epistemic position. In particular, I argue that the combination of hierarchical modeling, contentful inferentialism and representationalism entail an internal inconsistency. Specifically, (...)
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  • Autism as Gradual Sensorimotor Difference: From Enactivism to Ethical Inclusion.Thomas van Es & Jo Bervoets - 2022 - Topoi 41 (2):395-407.
    Autism research is increasingly moving to a view centred around sensorimotor atypicalities instead of traditional, ethically problematical, views predicated on social-cognitive deficits. We explore how an enactivist approach to autism illuminates how social differences, stereotypically associated with autism, arise from such sensorimotor atypicalities. Indeed, in a state space description, this can be taken as a skewing of sensorimotor variables that influences social interaction and so also enculturation and habituation. We argue that this construal leads to autism being treated on a (...)
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  • Understanding Human–Technology Relations Within Technologization and Appification of Musicality.Kai Tuuri & Oskari Koskela - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11.
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  • Causation and Cognition: An Epistemic Approach.Samuel D. Taylor - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):9133-9160.
    Kaplan and Craver :601–627, 2011) and Piccinini and Craver :283–311, 2011) argue that only mechanistic explanations of cognition are genuine causal explanations, because only evidence of mechanisms reveals the causal structure of cognition. I first argue that this claim is grounded in a commitment to the mechanistic account of causality, which cannot be endorsed by a defender of causal-nonmechanistic explanations. Then, I defend the epistemic theory of causality, which holds that causal explanations are not genuine to the extent that they (...)
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  • Davidson, Reasons, and Causes: A Plea for a Little Bit More Empathy.Karsten R. Stueber - 2019 - Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy 7 (2):59-75.
    In this essay, I will suggest ways of improving on Davidson’s conception of the explanatory autonomy of folk psychological explanations. For that purpose, I will appeal to insights from the recent theory of mind debate emphasizing the centrality of various forms of empathy for our understanding of another person’s mindedness. While I will argue that we need to abandon Davidson’s position of anomalous monism, I will also show that my account is fully compatible with Davidson’s non-reductive and interpretationist account of (...)
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  • Untangling the Knot of Intentionality: Between Directedness, Reference, and Content.Pierre Steiner - 2019 - Studia Semiotyczne 33 (1):83-104.
    The notion of “intentionality” is much invoked in various foundational theories of meaning, being very often equated with “meaning”, “content” and “reference”. In this paper, I propose and develop a basic distinction between two concepts and, more fundamentally, properties of intentionality: intentionality-T and intentionality-C. Representationalism is then defined as the position according to which intentionality-T can be reduced to intentionality-C, in the form of representational states. Nonrepresentationalism is rejecting this reduction, and argues that intentionality-T is more fundamental than intentionality-C. Non-representationalism (...)
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  • Radical Views on Cognition and the Dynamics of Scientific Change.Pierre Steiner - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):547-569.
    Radical views on cognition are generally defined by a cluster of features including non-representationalism and vehicle-externalism. In this paper, I concentrate on the way radical views on cognition define themselves as revolutionary theories in cognitive science. These theories often use the Kuhnian concepts of “paradigm” and “paradigm shift” for describing their ambitions and the current situation in cognitive science. I examine whether the use of Kuhn’s theory of science is appropriate here. There might be good reasons to think that cognitive (...)
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  • From Notebooks to Institutions: The Case for Symbiotic Cognition.Marc Slors - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11.
  • Modelling Ourselves: What the Free Energy Principle Reveals About Our Implicit Notions of Representation.Matt Sims & Giovanni Pezzulo - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):7801-7833.
    Predictive processing theories are increasingly popular in philosophy of mind; such process theories often gain support from the Free Energy Principle —a normative principle for adaptive self-organized systems. Yet there is a current and much discussed debate about conflicting philosophical interpretations of FEP, e.g., representational versus non-representational. Here we argue that these different interpretations depend on implicit assumptions about what qualifies as representational. We deploy the Free Energy Principle instrumentally to distinguish four main notions of representation, which focus on organizational, (...)
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  • Is Free-Energy Minimisation the Mark of the Cognitive?Matt Sims & Julian Kiverstein - 2021 - Biology and Philosophy 36 (2):1-27.
    A mark of the cognitive should allow us to specify theoretical principles for demarcating cognitive from non-cognitive causes of behaviour in organisms. Specific criteria are required to settle the question of when in the evolution of life cognition first emerged. An answer to this question should however avoid two pitfalls. It should avoid overintellectualising the minds of other organisms, ascribing to them cognitive capacities for which they have no need given the lives they lead within the niches they inhabit. But (...)
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  • Befuddling the mind: radical Enactivism (Hutto-Myin style) and the metaphysics of experience.Itay Shani - 2021 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 20 (1):39-56.
    This paper is a critique of the radical enactivism of Daniel Hutto, Erik Myin, and their collaborators, insofar as their approach pertains to the hard problem of consciousness. I argue that their valiant attempt to discard the hard problem is ultimately unsuccessful. More specifically, I argue that the hard problem of consciousness is best construed as a transcendental challenge and that no phenomeno-physical identity theory, and no “logic of identity”, successfully eliminate this challenge. Finally, I argue that the theoretical stance (...)
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  • Similarity-Based Cognition: Radical Enactivism Meets Cognitive Neuroscience.Miguel Segundo-Ortin & Daniel D. Hutto - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):1-19.
    Similarity-based cognition is commonplace. It occurs whenever an agent or system exploits the similarities that hold between two or more items—e.g., events, processes, objects, and so on—in order to perform some cognitive task. This kind of cognition is of special interest to cognitive neuroscientists. This paper explicates how similarity-based cognition can be understood through the lens of radical enactivism and why doing so has advantages over its representationalist rival, which posits the existence of structural representations or S-representations. Specifically, it is (...)
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  • Similarity-Based Cognition: Radical Enactivism Meets Cognitive Neuroscience.Miguel Segundo-Ortin & Daniel D. Hutto - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):5-23.
    Similarity-based cognition is commonplace. It occurs whenever an agent or system exploits the similarities that hold between two or more items—e.g., events, processes, objects, and so on—in order to perform some cognitive task. This kind of cognition is of special interest to cognitive neuroscientists. This paper explicates how similarity-based cognition can be understood through the lens of radical enactivism and why doing so has advantages over its representationalist rival, which posits the existence of structural representations or S-representations. Specifically, it is (...)
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  • Ecological Psychology is Radical Enough: A Reply to Radical Enactivists.Miguel Segundo-Ortin, Manuel Heras-Escribano & Vicente Raja - 2019 - Philosophical Psychology 32 (7):1001-1023.
    Ecological psychology is one of the most influential theories of perception in the embodied, anti-representational, and situated cognitive sciences. However, radical enactivists claim that Gibsonians tend to describe ecological information and its ‘pick up’ in ways that make ecological psychology close to representational theories of perception and cognition. Motivated by worries about the tenability of classical views of informational content and its processing, these authors claim that ecological psychology needs to be “RECtified” so as to explicitly resist representational readings. In (...)
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  • Are Plants Cognitive? A Reply to Adams.Miguel Segundo-Ortin & Paco Calvo - 2019 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 73:64-71.
    According to F. Adams [this journal, vol. 68, 2018] cognition cannot be realized in plants or bacteria. In his view, plants and bacteria respond to the here-and-now in a hardwired, inflexible manner, and are therefore incapable of cognitive activity. This article takes issue with the pursuit of plant cognition from the perspective of an empirically informed philosophy of plant neurobiology. As we argue, empirical evidence shows, contra Adams, that plant behavior is in many ways analogous to animal behavior. This renders (...)
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  • Agency From a Radical Embodied Standpoint: An Ecological-Enactive Proposal.Miguel Segundo-Ortin - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11 (1319).
    Explaining agency is a significant challenge for those who are interested in the sciences of the mind, and non-representationalists are no exception to this. Even though both ecological psychologists and enactivists agree that agency is to be explained by focusing on the relation between the organism and the environment, they have approached it by focusing on different aspects of the organism-environment relation. In this paper, I offer a suggestion for a radical embodied account of agency that combines ecological psychology with (...)
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  • A book review of Chauncey Maher, Plant minds: A philosophical defense, New York, Routledge, 2017. [REVIEW]Miguel Segundo-Ortin - 2020 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 19 (3):605-610.
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  • Prospects of Enactivist Approaches to Intentionality and Cognition.Tobias Schlicht & Tobias Starzak - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):89-113.
    We discuss various implications of some radical anti-representationalist views of cognition and what they have to offer with regard to the naturalization of intentionality and the explanation of cognitive phenomena. Our focus is on recent arguments from proponents of enactive views of cognition to the effect that basic cognition is intentional but not representational and that cognition is co-extensive with life. We focus on lower rather than higher forms of cognition, namely the question regarding the intentional and representational nature of (...)
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  • Does Separating Intentionality From Mental Representation Imply Radical Enactivism?Tobias Schlicht - 2018 - Frontiers in Psychology 9.
  • Understanding Others by Doing Things Together: An Enactive Account.Glenda Satne - 2020 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):507-528.
    Enactivists claim that social cognition is constituted by interactive processes and even more radically that there is ‘no observation without interaction’. Nevertheless, the notion of interaction at the core of the account has not yet being characterized in a way that makes good the claim that interactions actually constitute social understanding rather than merely facilitating or causally contributing to it. This paper seeks to complement the enactivist approach by offering an account of basic joint action that involves and brings with (...)
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  • Unsuccessful Remembering: A Challenge for the Relational View of Memory.André Sant’Anna - 2020 - Erkenntnis 87 (4):1539-1562.
    This paper explores the relationship between a prominent version of the relational view of memory and recent work on forms of unsuccessful remembering or memory errors. I argue that unsuccessful remembering poses an important challenge for the relational view. Unsuccessful remembering can be divided into two kinds: misremembering and confabulating. I discuss each of these cases in light of a recent relational account, according to which remembering is characterized by an experiential relation to past events, and I argue that experiential (...)
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  • Attitudes and the (Dis)Continuity Between Memory and Imagination.André Sant'Anna - 2021 - Estudios de Filosofía (Universidad de Antioquia) 64:73-93.
    The current dispute between causalists and simulationists in philosophy of memory has led to opposing attempts to characterize the relationship between memory and imagination. In a recent overview of this debate, Perrin and Michaelian have suggested that the dispute over the continuity between memory and imagination boils down to the question of whether a causal connection to a past event is necessary for remembering. By developing an argument based on an analogy to perception, I argue that this dispute should instead (...)
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  • In Defense of Picturing; Sellars’s Philosophy of Mind and Cognitive Neuroscience.Carl B. Sachs - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 18 (4):669-689.
    I argue that Sellars’s distinction between signifying and picturing should be taken seriously by philosophers of mind, language, and cognition. I begin with interpretations of key Sellarsian texts in order to show that picturing is best understood as a theory of non-linguistic cognitive representations through which animals navigate their environments. This is distinct from the kind of discursive cognition that Sellars called ‘signifying’ and which is best understood in terms of socio-linguistic inferences. I argue that picturing is required because reflection (...)
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  • Reconceiving Rationality: Situating Rationality Into Radically Enactive Cognition.Giovanni Rolla - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):571-590.
    Rational beliefs and actions are typically evaluated against certain benchmarks, e.g., those of classical logic or probability theory. Rationality therefore is traditionally taken to involve some sort of reasoning, which in turn implies contentful cognition. Radically Enactive views of Cognition, on the other hand, claim that not all cognition is contentful. In order to show that rationality does not need to lie outside of REC’s scope of radicalizing cognition, I develop a Radically Enactive notion of Rationality, according to which rationality (...)
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  • Ecological-Enactive Scientific Cognition: Modeling and Material Engagement.Giovanni Rolla & Felipe Novaes - 2020 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 1:1-19.
    Ecological-enactive approaches to cognition aim to explain cognition in terms of the dynamic coupling between agent and environment. Accordingly, cognition of one’s immediate environment (which is sometimes labeled “basic” cognition) depends on enaction and the picking up of affordances. However, ecological-enactive views supposedly fail to account for what is sometimes called “higher” cognition, i.e., cognition about potentially absent targets, which therefore can only be explained by postulating representational content. This challenge levelled against ecological-enactive approaches highlights a putative explanatory gap between (...)
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  • Ecological-enactive scientific cognition: modeling and material engagement.Giovanni Rolla & Felipe Novaes - 2022 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 21 (3):625-643.
    Ecological-enactive approaches to cognition aim to explain cognition in terms of the dynamic coupling between agent and environment. Accordingly, cognition of one’s immediate environment depends on enaction and the picking up of affordances. However, ecological-enactive views supposedly fail to account for what is sometimes called “higher” cognition, i.e., cognition about potentially absent targets, which therefore can only be explained by postulating representational content. This challenge levelled against ecological-enactive approaches highlights a putative explanatory gap between basic and higher cognition. In this (...)
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  • Do babies represent? On a failed argument for representationalism.Giovanni Rolla - 2022 - Synthese 200 (4):1-20.
    In order to meet the explanatory challenge levelled against non-representationalist views on cognition, radical enactivists claim that cognition about potentially absent targets involves the socioculturally scaffolded capacity to manipulate public symbols. At a developmental scale, this suggests that higher cognition gradually emerges as humans begin to master language use, which takes place around the third year of life. If, however, it is possible to show that pre-linguistic infants represent their surroundings, then the radical enactivists’ explanation for the emergence of higher (...)
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  • Constraint-evading surrogacy: the missing piece in Radical Embodied Cognition’s non-representationalist account of intentionality?Andrew Robinson & Christopher Southgate - 2022 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 21 (4):813-834.
    Radical Embodied Cognition is an anti-representationalist approach to the nature of basic cognition proposed by Daniel Hutto and Erik Myin. While endorsing REC’s arguments against a role for contentful representations in basic cognition we suggest that REC’s ‘teleosemiotic’ approach to intentional targeting results in a ‘grey area’ in which it is not clear what kind of causal-explanatory concept is involved. We propose the concept of constraint-evading surrogacy as a conceptual basis for REC’s account of intentional targeting. The argument is developed (...)
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  • Ecological Psychology and Enactivism: Perceptually-Guided Action Vs. Sensation-Based Enaction1.Catherine Read & Agnes Szokolszky - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11.
    Ecological Psychology and Enactivism both challenge representationist cognitive science, but the two approaches have only begun to engage in dialogue. Further conceptual clarification is required in which differences are as important as common ground. This paper enters the dialogue by focusing on important differences. After a brief account of the parallel histories of Ecological Psychology and Enactivism, we cover incompatibility between them regarding their theories of sensation and perception. First, we show how and why in ecological theory perception is, crucially, (...)
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  • Wittgenstein’s Remarks on Technology and Mental Mechanisms.Thomas Raleigh - 2018 - Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology 22 (3):447-471.
    This article provides a survey of Wittgenstein’s remarks in which he discusses various kinds of technology. I argue that throughout his career, his use of technological examples displays a thematic unity: technologies are invoked in order to illustrate a certain mechanical conception of the mind. I trace how his use of such examples evolved as his views on the mind and on meaning changed. I also discuss an important and somewhat radical anti-mechanistic strain in his later thought and suggest that (...)
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  • Tolerant Enactivist Cognitive Science.Thomas Raleigh - 2018 - Philosophical Explorations 21 (2):226-244.
    Enactivist (Embodied, Embedded, etc.) approaches in cognitive science and philosophy of mind are sometimes, though not always, conjoined with an anti-representational commitment. A weaker anti-representational claim is that ascribing representational content to internal/sub-personal processes is not compulsory when giving psychological explanations. A stronger anti-representational claim is that the very idea of ascribing representational content to internal/sub-personal processes is a theoretical confusion. This paper criticises some of the arguments made by Hutto & Myin (2013, 2017) for the stronger anti-representational claim and (...)
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  • Rethinking Turing’s Test and the Philosophical Implications.Diane Proudfoot - 2020 - Minds and Machines 30 (4):487-512.
    In the 70 years since Alan Turing’s ‘Computing Machinery and Intelligence’ appeared in Mind, there have been two widely-accepted interpretations of the Turing test: the canonical behaviourist interpretation and the rival inductive or epistemic interpretation. These readings are based on Turing’s Mind paper; few seem aware that Turing described two other versions of the imitation game. I have argued that both readings are inconsistent with Turing’s 1948 and 1952 statements about intelligence, and fail to explain the design of his game. (...)
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  • Enactivism and Ecological Psychology: The Role of Bodily Experience in Agency.Yanna B. Popova & Joanna Rączaszek-Leonardi - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11.
  • Action Control, Forward Models and Expected Rewards: Representations in Reinforcement Learning.Jami Pekkanen, Jesse Kuokkanen, Otto Lappi & Anna-Mari Rusanen - 2021 - Synthese 199 (5-6):14017-14033.
    The fundamental cognitive problem for active organisms is to decide what to do next in a changing environment. In this article, we analyze motor and action control in computational models that utilize reinforcement learning algorithms. In reinforcement learning, action control is governed by an action selection policy that maximizes the expected future reward in light of a predictive world model. In this paper we argue that RL provides a way to explicate the so-called action-oriented views of cognitive systems in representational (...)
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  • Misplacing Memories? An Enactive Approach to the Virtual Memory Palace.Anco Peeters & Miguel Segundo-Ortin - 2019 - Consciousness and Cognition 76:102834.
    In this paper, we evaluate the pragmatic turn towards embodied, enactive thinking in cognitive science, in the context of recent empirical research on the memory palace technique. The memory palace is a powerful method for remembering yet it faces two problems. First, cognitive scientists are currently unable to clarify its efficacy. Second, the technique faces significant practical challenges to its users. Virtual reality devices are sometimes presented as a way to solve these practical challenges, but currently fall short of delivering (...)
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  • Temporality and Metaplasticity. Facing Extension and Incorporation Through Material Engagement Theory.Francesco Parisi - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 18 (1):205-221.
    In our everyday life, we have the genuine feeling that when something we use works very well, we forget that we are doing something that is mediated by something else. It happens when we read through our glasses, or when we drive home, or when we play guitar. In all those cases, it can be said that the device becomes an extension of our body, or that we have incorporated it. In this paper I want to discuss the extension/incorporation dichotomy (...)
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  • Autopoietic Enactivism, Phenomenology, and the Problem of Naturalism: A Neutral Monist Proposal.Andrea Pace Giannotta - 2021 - Husserl Studies 37 (3):209-228.
    In this paper, I compare the original version of the enactive view—autopoietic enactivism—with Husserl’s phenomenology, regarding the issue of the relationship between consciousness and nature. I refer to this issue as the “problem of naturalism.” I show how the idea of the co-determination of subject and object of cognition, which is at the heart of autopoietic enactivism, is close to the phenomenological form of correlationism. However, I argue that there is a tension between an epistemological reading of the subject-object correlation (...)
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  • Reincarnating the Identity Theory.Erik Myin & Farid Zahnoun - 2018 - Frontiers in Psychology 9 (3):1--9.
  • The Is and Oughts of Remembering.Erik Myin & Ludger van Dijk - 2022 - Topoi 41 (2):275-285.
    One can be reproached for not remembering. Remembering and forgetting shows who and what one values. Indeed, memory is constitutively normative. Theoretical approaches to memory should be sensitive to this normative character. We will argue that traditional views that consider memory as the storing and retrieval of mental content, fail to consider the practices we need for telling the truth about our past. We introduce the Radically Enactive view of Cognition, or REC, as well-placed to recognize the central role of (...)
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  • A Twofold Tale of One Mind: Revisiting REC’s Multi-Storey Story.Erik Myin & Jasper C. Van den Herik - 2020 - Synthese 198 (12):12175-12193.
    The Radical Enactive/embodied view of Cognition, or REC, claims that all cognition is a matter of skilled performance. Yet REC also makes a distinction between basic and content-involving cognition, arguing that the development of basic to content-involving cognition involves a kink. It might seem that this distinction leads to problematic gaps in REC’s story. We address two such alleged gaps in this paper. First, we identify and reply to the concern that REC leads to an “interface problem”, according to which (...)
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  • On the Importance of Correctly Locating Content: Why and How REC Can Afford Affordance Perception.Erik Myin - 2020 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 1):25-39.
    REC, or the radical enactive/embodied view of cognition makes a crucial distinction between basic and content-involving cognition. This paper clarifies REC’s views on basic and content-involving cognition, and their relation by replying to a recent criticism claiming that REC is refuted by evidence on affordance perception. It shows how a correct understanding of how basic and contentless cognition relate allows to see how REC can accommodate this evidence, and thus can afford affordance perception.
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  • From Deed to Word: Gapless and Kink-Free Enactivism.Danièle Moyal-Sharrock - forthcoming - Synthese:1-21.
    In their most recent book, Evolving Enactivism: Basic Minds Meet Content, Dan Hutto and Eric Myin claim to give a complete and gapless naturalistic account of cognition, but it comes with a kink. The kink being that content-involving cognition has special properties found nowhere else in nature, making it the case that minds capable of contentful thought differ in kind, in this key respect, from more basic minds. Contra Hutto and Myin, I argue that content-involving practices are themselves simply a (...)
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