It is possible to understand EM as asserting a necessary truth about the composition of mental processes: that, necessarily, some mental processes are partly constituted by processes of environmental manipulation, etc. It is possible, but inadvisable. The underlying rationale for EM is provided by a liberal form of functionalism. And the entire thrust of liberal functionalism is to leave open the possibility of different ways of realizing the same (type of) mental process. By understanding EM as asserting a necessary truth, therefore, the proponent of EM is at risk of undermining his or her own primary motivation. (p. 54).But, I don't think there is a consensus that "The underlying rationale for EM is provided by a liberal form of functionalism" Liberal functionalism does not seem to be Haugeland's rationale for EC. Nor does it seems to be Chemero's rationale for EC (his rationale being some combination of dynamical systems theory and Gibsonian ecological psychology).
Thursday, April 29, 2010
Rowlands on the Rationale for EC
In "Enactivism and the Extended Mind", Rowlands writes,