Two open questions in the reformist agenda of the philosophy of cognitive science

Aurora Alegiani, Massimo Marraffa, Tiziana Vistarini


Abstract: In this paper we carve out a reformist agenda within the debate on the foundations of cognitive science, incorporating some important ideas from the 4E cognition literature into the computational-representational framework. We are deeply sympathetic to this reformist program since we think that, despite strong criticism of the concept of computation and the related notion of representation, computational models should still be at the core of the study of mind. At the same time, we recognize the need for a liberalization of the computational and representational framework that can address deep dissatisfaction with the anti-biologism and radical internalism of classical cognitive science. However, reform is a difficult task, so in this article we focus on two open questions within the reformist agenda. The first concerns the possibility of combining mechanistic-computational and dynamical explanations. The second concerns related changes in the notion of representation and its use (with special attention to Andy Clark’s radical predictive processing).

Keywords: Continuum of Representational Genera; Enactivism; Predictive Processing; Radical Embodied Cognition Thesis; Representationalism

Due problemi aperti nell’agenda riformista della filosofia della scienza cognitiva

Riassunto: In questo lavoro identifichiamo un’agenda riformista nel dibattito sui fondamenti della scienza cognitiva che incorpora alcune idee centrali provenienti dalla letteratura sulla cognizione 4E all’interno di una cornice computazionalista e rappresentazionalista. Tale agenda considera il quadro computazionalista e rappresentazionalista ancora imprescindibile ai fini dello studio integrato della mente e del cervello, ma ne persegue una liberalizzazione nell’intento di renderlo idoneo ad accogliere alcuni importanti spunti emersi dalla letteratura sulla cognizione delle 4E. Tuttavia, riformare è un compito difficile. In questo articolo ci concentriamo su due problemi aperti nell’agenda riformista. Il primo riguarda la possibilità di mettere assieme le spiegazioni meccaniciste e computazionaliste con quelle dinamiche. Il secondo riguarda i cambiamenti relativi alla nozione di rappresentazione e al suo impiego (con particolare attenzione all’elaborazione predittiva radicale di Andy Clark).

Parole chiave: Continuum dei generi rappresentazionali; Elaborazione predittiva; Enattivismo; Tesi della cognizione incarnata radicale; Rappresentazionalismo

Parole chiave

Continuum of Representational Genera; Enactivism; Predictive Processing; Radical Embodied Cognition Thesis; Representationalism

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