Is empathy is mental simulation? Remarks on the representative approach based on the concept of mirror neurons

Diametros:108-129 (2011)

Authors
Paweł Gładziejewski
Polish Academy of Sciences
Abstract
Paweł Gładziejewski, Is empathy is mental simulation? Remarks on the representative approach based on the concept of mirror neurons., Diametros 27 This paper draws on the theoretical achievements of analytic philosophy of mind and the empirical results of psychology and cognitive neuroscience in order to understand the nature of empathy and the sub-personal mechanisms upon which it is based. The paper distinguishes two types of empathy, which are often not sufficiently clearly distinguished in the literature, empathy as a kind of social perception and empathy as compassion. The argument attempts show to that neither of these can be identified with a mental simulation process understood as a sub-personal process. Nevertheless mental simulation may play a limited explanatory role with respect to these two types of empathy
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