In this paper, we defend a novel, multidimensional account of representational unification, which we distinguish from integration. The dimensions of unity are simplicity, generality and scope, non-monstrosity, and systematization. In our account, unification is a graded property. The account is used to investigate the issue of how research traditions contribute to representational unification, focusing on embodied cognition in cognitive science. Embodied cognition contributes to unification even if it fails to offer a grand unification of cognitive science. The study of this (...) failure shows that unification, contrary to what defenders of mechanistic explanation claim, is an important mechanistic virtue of research traditions. (shrink)
The integration of embodied and computational approaches to cognition requires that non-neural body parts be described as parts of a computing system, which realizes cognitive processing. In this paper, based on research about morphological computations and the ecology of vision, I argue that nonneural body parts could be described as parts of a computational system, but they do not realize computation autonomously, only in connection with some kind of—even in the simplest form—central control system. Finally, I integrate the proposal defended (...) in the paper with the contemporary mechanistic approach to wide computation. (shrink)
In the article, I propose that the body phantom is a phenomenal and functional model of one’s own body. This model has two aspects. On the one hand, it functions as a tacit sensory representation of the body that is at the same time related to the motor aspects of body functioning. On the other hand, it also has a phenomenal aspect as it constitutes the content of conscious bodily experience. This sort of tacit, functional and sensory model is related (...) to the spatial parameters of the physical body. In the article, I postulate that this functional model or map is of crucial importance to the felt ownership parameters of the body, which are themselves considered as constituting the phenomenal aspect of the aforementioned model. (shrink)
In this article, I show the role that the philosopher of cognitive science can cur-rently play in cognitive science research. I argue for the important, and not yet considered, role of the philosophy of cognitive science in cognitive science, that is, the importance of cooperation between philosophers of science with cogni-tive scientists in investigating the research methods and theoretical assump-tions of cognitive science. At the beginning of the paper I point out, how the philosopher of science, here, the philosopher of (...) cognitive science, can participate in interdisciplinary research. I am opting of the cooperation in investigating the so-called reflective problems. Then, I discuss four examples of issues important for the cognitive science, in which the competences possessed by the philosopher are useful. At the ending I point out wider landscape of possible cooperation of philosophers with cognitive scientists. (shrink)
The body is a highly complex, coordinated system engaged in coping with many environmental problems. It can be considered as some sort of opportunity or obstacle, with which internal processing must deal. Internal processing must take into account the possibilities and limitations of the particular body. In other words, even if the body is not involved in the realization of some cognitive explicit task, it is not a neutral factor of our understanding of why a system solves a task in (...) one way or another. Therefore, when conducting research on embodiment and the body’s cognitive system we should not neglect internal, cognitive processing. I appeal to Goldman’s research on embodied cognition to sketch the broader framework for internal processing in embodied cognition. I believe that even if we don’t accept Goldman’s approach as the viable proposal for embodied cognition in general, it’s a quite natural starting point for our analysis. Goldman (2012; 2014, and with de Vignemont 2009) argue for the essential role of the bodily formats or bodily codes (respectively: B-formats and B-codes) in embodied cognition. B-codes are here described as the processing of regions or sub-regions of the central nervous system. They are primarily employed for body control or monitoring, and reused for cognitive tasks. Beyond doubt, this conception provides an excellent starting point for analyzing the internal (mostly neural) processing in cases of embodied cognition. At the end of this paper, I will argue that the embodiment of cognition needs a conceptual twist. Following Keijzer’s (2015) interest in the evolution of the nervous system, and the minimal forms of cognition, I argue that in investigating embodied cognition, we should investigate the role played by cognitive processing for specific kinds of organisms, meaning organisms with a body of a particular morphology (size, shape, kinds, and distribution of sensors and effectors). Doing that, I refer to some conceptual and empirical considerations. I will also try to show that research on embodied cognition is still not sufficiently anchored in evolutionary and comparative studies on cognition, nor on the nervous system and body morphology. Bigger reliance on these kinds of studies, will make it make possible to gain a deeper understanding of internal processing in embodied cognition. (shrink)
This paper is a loose commentary on Marcinów’s book (2017). The commentary is focused on the objects of psychopathological investigations and the role of psychology / psychiatry tension in the process of singling out, tracking, and describing them. As a consequence, there are limitations of collaborative and integrative efforts between psychologists and psychiatrists where questions of psychopathology are concerned.
One of the most common questions in today’s cognitive studies is the one regarding embodied cognition. The answer to this question draws our attention to many factors, including bodily actions, which also work to embody cognition. With this in mind, enactivism is included in discussions of embodiment.
One of the leading and central figures in research on delusions, Max Coltheart, presents and summarises his heretofore work in a short text. Miyazono and Bortolotti present an interesting argument aimed at the charges against the doxastic concept of delusions. Adams, Brown and Friston showcase a predictive-Bayesian concept of delusions. Young criticizes the current changes in the two-factor account of delusions and argues that the role of experience should not be dismissed within it. Kapusta presents an interesting, phenomenological approach to (...) delusions, rooted in the classic works of Karl Jaspers. In the last article, Carruthers takes a look at delusions from a different perspective. He uses them in order to show the weakness of the sense of agency concept as proposed by Wegner. The issue also contains an interview with Jakob Hohwy. In Hohwy’s still-recent book, we can find an interesting, predictive approach to delusions. Hohwy points towards the unobvious connections between delusions and illusions. (shrink)
According to Peter Halligan, […] it is important to consider that the experience of our body is largely the product of a continuously updated „phantom” generated by the brain.. Next, he adds: I will argue that the prevalent common sense assumption of phantom experience as pathological is wrongheaded and largely based on a long-standing and pernicious folk assumption that the physical body is necessary for experience of a body.. These two remarks can serve as a backdrop for a discussion of (...) the problem of bodily self-consciousness presented in the article. If experiencing a phantom of an amputated limb is indeed not pathological, and if normal bodily experience is de facto based on the body phantom constructed by the brain, then our conception of this very phantom should prove relevant when trying to explain bodily self-consciousness. (shrink)
[Does my body embody cognition?] The works published in this section address the question of embodied cognition in an inspiring manner. In her article written ten years ago, Natika Newton deals with the notion of the relation between mental representation and embodiment. Frederique de Vignemont in his text written five years prior begins a strictly philosophical debate regarding the sense of ownership of one’s own body. Claire Petitmengin’s article is a kind of counterpoint to the previous texts. She attempts to (...) explain and demonstrate the profound dimension of experience which she characterizes as affective, transmodal and gestural. (shrink)
[The subject and his world in statu nascendi.] Similarly to other works created in the context of enactivism, the works presented in this section refer to the permanently emerging subject as well as, simultaneously, the world of this subject. In the article entitled “The Mind-Body-Body Problem” an animal becomes the basic element of the mind-body-body relation, while in “Living ways of sense-making” the author makes a callback to the research he performed together with Varela in the context of phenomenology and (...) biology. (shrink)
The focus of this special issue of Theory & Psychology is on explanatory mechanisms in psychology, especially on problems of particular prominence for psychological science such as theoretical integration and unification. Proponents of the framework of mechanistic explanation claim, in short, that satisfactory explanations in psychology and related fields are causal. They stress the importance of explaining phenomena by describing mechanisms that are responsible for them, in particular by elucidating how the organization of component parts and operations in mechanisms gives (...) rise to phenomena in certain conditions. We hope for cross-pollination between philosophical approaches to explanation and experimental psychology, which could offer methodological guidance, in particular where mechanism discovery and theoretical integration are at issue. Contributions in this issue pertain to theoretical integration and unification of psychology as well as the growing importance of causal mechanistic explanations in psychological science. (shrink)