Joint Intentionality

Journal of Social Ontology 2 (1):75-85 (2016)

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Abstract
According to the shared intentionality hypothesis proposed by Michael Tomasello, two cognitive upgrades – joint and collective intentionality, respectively – make human thinking unique. Joint intentionality, in particular, is a mindset supposed to account for our early, species-specific capacity to participate in collaborative activities involving two agents. In order to elucidate such activities and their proximate cognitive-motivational mechanism, Tomasello draws on philosophical accounts of shared intentionality. I argue that his deference to such cognitively demanding accounts of shared intentional activities is problematic if his theoretical ambition is in part to show that and how early capacities for joint action contribute to the development of higher cognitive capacities.
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