Psychology and Neuroscience: The Distinctness Question

Erkenntnis 87 (4):1753-1772 (2022)
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In a recent paper, Gualtiero Piccinini and Carl Craver have argued that psychology is not distinct from neuroscience. Many have argued that Piccinini and Craver’s argument is unsuccessful. However, none of these authors have questioned the appropriateness of Piccinini and Craver’s argument for their key premise—that functional analyses are mechanism sketches. My first and main goal in this paper is to show that Piccinini and Craver offer normative considerations in support of what is a descriptive premise and to provide some guidelines on how to argue for this premise. My second goal is to show that the distinctness question should be of great significance for philosophy of cognitive science.

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