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Representation in Cognitive Science

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ISBN: 9780198812883 Year: Pages: 304 Language: English
Publisher: Oxford University Press Grant: H2020 European Research Council - 681422
Subject: Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-15 13:34:11
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"Our thoughts are meaningful. We think about things in the outside world; how can that be so? This is one of the deepest questions in contemporary philosophy. Ever since the 'cognitive revolution', states with meaning-mental representations-have been the key explanatory construct of the cognitive sciences. But there is still no widely accepted theory of how mental representations get their meaning. Powerful new methods in cognitive neuroscience can now reveal information processing in the brain in unprecedented detail. They show how the brain performs complex calculations on neural representations. 

Drawing on this cutting-edge research, Nicholas Shea uses a series of case studies from the cognitive sciences to develop a naturalistic account of the nature of mental representation. His approach is distinctive in focusing firmly on the 'subpersonal' representations that pervade so much of cognitive science. The diversity and depth of the case studies, illustrated by numerous figures, make this book unlike any previous treatment. It is important reading for philosophers of psychology and philosophers of mind, and of considerable interest to researchers throughout the cognitive sciences."

Wounded Heroes

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ISBN: 9780199672783 Year: Pages: 246 DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199672783.001.0001 Language: English
Publisher: Oxford University Press Grant: OAPEN-UK
Subject: Philosophy --- History --- Languages and Literatures
Added to DOAB on : 2013-10-11 21:10:23
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Vulnerability is not often associated with virtue. Yet to be vulnerable is central to human experience. In this book, McCoy examines ways in which Greek epic, tragedy, and philosophy have important insights to offer about the nature of human vulnerability and how human beings might better come to terms with their own vulnerability. While studies of Greek heroism and virtue often focus on strength of character, prowess in war, or the achievement of honor for oneself or one’s society, McCoy examines another side to Greek thought that extols the recognition and proper acceptance of vulnerability. McCoy begins with the literary works of Homer’s Iliad, Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex, Oedipus at Colonus and Philoctetes before expanding her analysis to philosophical works. There, she analyzes imagery of wounding in Plato’s Gorgias and Symposium as well as Aristotle’s work on the vulnerability inherent in friendship and an innovative interpretation of tragic catharsis in the Poetics. As much a work of philosophy as of classical textual analysis, McCoy’s work aims at a deeper understanding of the virtues of vulnerability for individuals and societies alike.

Everything Flows

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ISBN: 9780198779636 9780198779636 Year: Pages: 416 Language: English
Publisher: Oxford University Press Grant: FP7 Ideas: European Research Council - 324186
Subject: Biology
Added to DOAB on : 2018-07-02 11:01:01
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This collection of essays explores the metaphysical thesis that the living world is not ontologically made up of substantial particles or things, as has often been assumed, but is rather constituted by processes. The biological domain is organized as an interdependent hierarchy of processes, which are stabilized and actively maintained at different timescales. Even entities that intuitively appear to be paradigms of things, such as organisms, are actually better understood as processes. Unlike previous attempts to articulate processual views of biology, which have tended to use Alfred North Whitehead’s panpsychist metaphysics as a foundation, this book takes a naturalistic approach to metaphysics. It submits that the main motivations for replacing an ontology of substances with one of processes are to be looked for in the empirical findings of science. Biology provides compelling reasons for thinking that the living realm is fundamentally dynamic and that the existence of things is always conditional on the existence of processes. The phenomenon of life cries out for theories that prioritize processes over things, and it suggests that the central explanandum of biology is not change but rather stability—or, more precisely, stability attained through constant change. This multicontributor volume brings together philosophers of science and metaphysicians interested in exploring the consequences of a processual philosophy of biology. The contributors draw on an extremely wide range of biological case studies and employ a process perspective to cast new light on a number of traditional philosophical problems such as identity, persistence, and individuality.

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