Saturday, September 25, 2010

A New Argument for EC

In a previous post, I cited the following from Wilson's "Meaning Making":
... Adams and Aizawa (2001) on Clark and Chalmers (1998), Grush (2003) on Haugeland (1998), and, most recently, Rupert (2004) largely on Rowlands (1999). For the most part, these critiques have to reconstruct, sometimes quite imaginatively, the arguments that they critique, leaving one with the feeling that externalists must surely have something more up their sleeves than what their critics draw from the hat. (Wilson, 2010, p. 173).
I am perfectly open to a further explication of how the many passages Adams and I have cited regarding the C-C fallacy turn out to involve something that we have overlooked.  We've looked at many variations on the kinds of coupling that have been proposed in the literature and found them wanting.  So, even if one does have the feeling that externalists have something more up their sleeve, it would be good if they would bring it forth.  Let's get beyond that "coupled in the right way" stuff and let's see what they have up their sleeve.

But, rather than explicate the argument that Adams and Aizawa have mistakenly interpreted as the C-C fallacy, Wilson offers a new argument for EC.  Some commentary omitted, the argument is this:

(a) Minds are intentional machines or semantic engines.
(b) Intentional machines or semantic engines detect and create meaning.
(c) Meaning detection and creation involve the sequestering and integration of internal and external cognitive resources. 
(d) Internal cognitive resources are part of the structure of the intentional machine that detects and creates meaning.
(e) External cognitive resources often play the same or similar functional roles in the detection and creation of meaning as do internal cognitive resources, or complement, compensate for, or enhance those roles.
(f) External cognitive resources, like internal cognitive resources, are part of the structure of the intentional machine that detects and creates meaning.
(g) The extended mind thesis is true.

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