The “systematicity argument” has been used to argue for a classical cognitive architecture (Fodor in The Language of Thought. Harvester Press, London, 1975, Why there still has to be a language of thought? In Psychosemantics, appendix. MIT Press, Cambridge, pp 135–154, 1987; Fodor and Pylyshyn in Cognition 28:3–71, 1988; Aizawa in The systematicity arguments. Kluwer Academic Press, Dordrecht, 2003). From the premises that cognition is systematic and that the best/only explanation of systematicity is compositional structure, it concludes that cognition is (...) to be explained in terms of symbols (in a language of thought) and formal rules. The debate, with connectionism, has mostly centered on the second premise-whether an explanation of systematicity requires compositional structure, which neural networks do not to exhibit (for example, Hadley and Hayward, in Minds and Machines, 7:1–37). In this paper, I will take issue with the first premise. Several arguments will be deployed that show that cognition is not systematic in general; that, in fact, systematicity seems to be related to language. I will argue that it is just verbal minds that are systematic, and they are so because of the structuring role of language in cognition. A dual-process theory of cognition will be defended as the best explanation of the facts. (shrink)
The declared goal of this paper is to fill this gap: “... cognitive systems research needs questions or challenges that define progress. The challenges are not (yet more) predictions of the future, but a guideline to what are the aims and what would constitute progress.” – the quotation being from the project description of EUCogII, the project for the European Network for Cognitive Systems within which this formulation of the ‘challenges’ was originally developed (http://www.eucognition.org). So, we stick out our neck (...) and formulate the challenges for artificial cognitive systems. These challenges are articulated in terms of a definition of what a cognitive system is: a system that learns from experience and uses its acquired knowledge (both declarative and practical) in a flexible manner to achieve its own goals. (shrink)
En este trabajo invito a considerar la existencia de la perspectiva de segunda persona de la atribución mental, como una perspectiva diferenciada de las de primera y tercera persona. Su ámbito específico sería el de las atribuciones espontáneas y recíprocas en situaciones de interacción cara a cara, por lo que supondría su naturaleza expresiva. Al tratarse de la perspectiva ontogenéticamente primaria, ofrece una vía para superar las dificultades complementarias de los enfoques teóricos y empáticos dominantes.
A general shortcoming of the localist, decompositional, approach to neuroscientific explanation that the target article exemplifies, is that it is incomplete unless supplemented with an account of how the hypothesized subsystems integrate in the normal case. Besides, a number of studies that show that object recognition is proprioception dependent and that cutaneous information affects motor performance make the existence of the proposed subsystems doubtful.
We discuss the discovery of technologies involving knotted netting, such as textiles, basketry, and cordage, in the Upper Paleolithic. This evidence, in our view, suggests a new way of connecting toolmaking and syntactic structure in human evolution, because these technologies already exhibit an which we take to constitute the key transition to human cognition.
In attempting to integrate the authors' proposed model with results from analogous human event-related potential (ERP) research, we found difficulties with: (1) its apparent disregard for supraordinate representations at posterior multimodal association cortices, (2) its failure to address contextual task effects, and (3) its strict architectural dichotomy between memory storage and control functions.
“Dance” has been associated with many psychophysiological and medical health effects. However, varying definitions of what constitute “dance” have led to a rather heterogenous body of evidence about such potential effects, leaving the picture piecemeal at best. It remains unclear what exact parameters may be driving positive effects. We believe that this heterogeneity of evidence is partly due to a lack of a clear definition of dance for such empirical purposes. A differentiation is needed between the effects on the individual (...) when the activity of “dancing” is enjoyed as a dancer within different dance domains, and what is commonly known as hobby, recreational or social dance), and the effects on the individual within these different domains, as a dancer of the different dance styles. Another separate category of dance engagement is, not as a dancer, but as a spectator of all of the above. “Watching dance” as part of an audience has its own set of psychophysiological and neurocognitive effects on the individual, and depends on the context where dance is witnessed. With the help of dance professionals, we first outline some different dance domains and dance styles, and outline aspects that differentiate them, and that may, therefore, cause differential empirical findings when compared regardless. Then, we outline commonalities between all dance styles. We identify six basic components that are part of any dance practice, as part of a continuum, and review and discuss available research for each of them concerning the possible health and wellbeing effects of each of these components, and how they may relate to the psychophysiological and health effects that are reported for “dancing”: rhythm and music, sociality, technique and fitness, connection and connectedness, flow and mindfulness, aesthetic emotions and imagination. Future research efforts might take into account the important differences between types of dance activities, as well as the six components, for a more targeted assessment of how “dancing” affects the human body. (shrink)
En Sentir, desear, creer: Una aproximación filosófica a los conceptos psicológicos, Diana Pérez se plantea una empresa ambiciosa, análoga a la de Ryle en The Concept of Mind: dar cuenta de manera integral de la ontología, la epistemología, la semántica y, en parte, la psicología de los conceptos de los diversos estados y procesos psicológicos. La aportación principal consiste en una perspectiva genealógica, basada en el modo en que se atribuyen tales conceptos, desde una posición realista. Para ello, se desarrolla (...) como contribución más original la idea de una perspectiva de segunda persona, la perspectiva de la interacción intersubjetiva, como el modo en que uno se introduce en el ámbito de lo mental. En conjunto, una aportación muy relevante. In Sentir, desear, creer: Una aproximación filosófica a los conceptos psicológicos, Diana Pérez sets for herself an ambitious task, analogous to Ryle's in The Concept of Mind: that of offering a unified account of the ontology, epistemology, semantics and, partly, psychology of mental concepts. Its main contribution lies in a genealogical perspective, grounded in the development of mental concept attribution, from a realist standpoint. To this extent, its most original contribution is the idea of a second-person perspective, that of intersubjective interaction, as the way through which one gets involved in the mental realm. In sum, a highly relevant contribution. (shrink)
After stressing the shortcomings of Darwinian accounts of self-consciousness and knowledge - i.e. in terms of their survival value - Anthony O'Hear presents Peirce's metaphysical hypotheses on cosmic evolution as an alternative approach that avoids those shortcomings. Although O'Hear does not straightforwardly defend Peirce's views, his argument suggests that only some teleological account of self-consciousness and knowledge is reasonable. The argument, though correct, is not enough to establish the metaphysical point O'Hear defends. Before developing his metaphysical ideas, Peirce's rejection of (...) natural selection as an explanation for every phenomenon brought him to consider the more appropriate question of how natural selection could give rise to a different kind of evolution. This involved outlining an evolutionary account of the origin of self-consciousness and of the mechanisms of belief fixation. The point is not one about Peirce, of course, but about the relationship between, on the one hand, biological and, on the other, psychological and cultural phenomena. (shrink)
En esta introducción al número monográfico, se presentan las líneas centrales del pensamiento de Peter Carruthers, su particular versión del cognitivismo funcionalista, que parte de una curiosa inversión de un lugar común: los animales piensan pero no sienten. Esta inversión deriva del papel central que Carruthers atribuye al lenguaje en la propia arquitectura mental, a pesar de partir de una versión de la modularidad masiva: como base para la conciencia y el pensamiento de nivel superior, flexible y creativo. Finalmente, también (...) se sitúan las diversas contribuciones al volumen dentro de estos ejes centrales. In this introduction to the special issue, the central ideas in Peter Carruther's thought are presented: his particular version of functionalist cognitivism, which inverts the common place that animals feel but not think, to claim that they do think but do not feel. The key to this inversion is the central role Carruthers assigns to language in the architecture of the mind, in spite of his defense of a version of the massive modularity hypothesis: as a ground for qualitative consciousness and for flexible thought. Finally, the different contributions to the special issue are placed in terms of such central axes. (shrink)
Es sabido desde Kuhn que la consolidación académica de los campos del conocimiento va acompañada de dos tipos de creaciones escritas: las obras paradigmáticas y los manuales. Si las primeras sirven para justificar la creación de una nueva área, los segundos pretenden más bien delimitar su especificidad, su "terreno de juego", sus métodos y estilos, su ortodoxia. Quizá sea la mejor prueba de la vitalidad y el desarrollo del campo de la Filosofía del Lenguaje la publicación en un relativamente breve (...) lapso de tiempo de diversos manuales, a los que hay que añadir la obra que vamos a reseñar ahora. Como si constituyeran la mejor prueba de un sentimiento de insatisfacción con respecto a los materiales disponibles hasta el momento, dado el auge de la disciplina en la última década. Sin embargo, también hay que ser consciente de que la industria editorial difícilmente publica ensayos filosóficos; la única manera de publicar un libro de filosofía es camuflarlo como manual o bien dirigirlo a un público general. (shrink)
We argue that Anderson's (MRH) needs further development in several directions. First, a thoroughgoing criticism of the several alternatives is required. Second, the course between the Scylla of full holism and the Charybdis of structural-functional modularism must be plotted more distinctly. Third, methodologies better suited to reveal brain circuits must be brought in. Finally, the constraints that naturalistic settings provide should be considered.
We show that externalization is a feature not only of moral judgment, but also of value judgment in general. It follows that the evolution of externalization was not specific to moral judgment. Second, we argue that value judgments cannot be decoupled from the level of motivations and preferences, which, in the moral case, rely on intersubjective bonds and claims.
Emotional contagion is a phenomenon that has attracted much interest in recent times. However, the main approach on offer, the mimicry theory, fails to properly account for its many facets. In particular, we focus on two shortcomings: the elicitation of emotional contagion is not context-independent, and there can be cases of emotional contagion without motor mimicry. We contend that a general theory of emotion elicitation is better suited to account for these features, because of its multi-level appraisal component. From this (...) standpoint, emotional contagion is viewed as a particular kind of emotional response that involves the same components and processes of emotional responses in general. (shrink)
In this paper, we take Darwall’s analytical project of the second-person standpoint as the starting point for a naturalistic project about our moral psychology. In his project, Darwall contends that our moral notions constitutively imply the perspective of second-personal interaction, i.e. the interaction of two mutually recognized agents who make and acknowledge claims on one another. This allows him to explain the distinctive purported authority of morality. Yet a naturalized interpretation of it has potential as an account of our moral (...) psychology. We propose a naturalistic interpretation of Darwall’s work to address some of the main issues about our moral psychology. First, we explain why moral norms motivate us; namely, because of these second-personal relations. We provide a naturalized version of this solution. Second, we articulate how intersubjective interactions take place effectively; grounding duties to particular other subjects, and being related to distinctive moral emotions. Third, we address the question of the limits of the moral community, proposing that it comprises all agents capable of second-personal interactions. Finally, we explain the emergence of community norms through intersubjective interaction. Since all group members can adopt alternatively the second-personal stance to each other, demands are sanctioned and recognized in a triangulation process which explains the emergence of group norms. (shrink)
In this paper we discuss Prinz’s Kantian arguments in “Is Empathy Necessary for Morality?”. They purport to show that empathy is not necessary for morality because it is not part of the capacities required for moral competence and it can bias moral judgment. First, we show that even conceding Prinz his notions of empathy and moral competence, empathy still plays a role in moral competence. Second, we argue that moral competence is not limited to moral judgment. Third, we reject Prinz’s (...) notion of empathy because it is too restrictive, in requiring emotional matching. We conclude that once morality and empathy are properly understood, empathy’s role in morality is vindicated. Morality is not reduced to a form of rational judgment, but it necessarily presupposes pro-social preferences and motivation and sensitivity to inter-subjective demands. (shrink)