A conceptual and empirical framework for the social distribution of cognition: The case of memory

See on Scoop.itScience and Sanity

“One motivation for adopting a perspective in which cognition is embedded, distributed, or extended begins with reflection on the fact that neural systems do not operate in causal isolation from their environments. Moreover, the nature and level of causal integration across the divide between individual and environment suggests that cognitive systems themselves often involve the coupling of neural, bodily, and external systems in complex webs of continuous reciprocal causation. Through evolution and ontogenetic development we have gained capacities skilfully to hook up with or incorporate external physical and cultural resources that over time have themselves become apt for incorporation into more encompassing, extended cognitive systems. In this way, we form temporarily integrated larger cognitive units that incorporate distinct but complementary inner and outer components, often making “the world smart so that we can be dumb in peace” (Clark, 1997, p. 180). Embodied human minds extend into a vast and uneven world of things—artefacts, technologies, and institutions—which they have collectively constructed and maintained through cultural and individual history.”

See on manwithoutqualities.com

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