PPIG: Philosophy, Psychology, and Informatics Group

Speaker: Till Vierkant (University of Edinburgh)

Title: Is deliberating something we do?

Abstract: In this paper I will argue that deliberating can only be something we do if either the doctrine of extended cognition is correct or if deliberating is not cognitive itself but merely catalytic or if the agency in deliberating is not the agency of intentional action. The first two disjuncts are justified because of an argument by Yair Levy that shows that there is no functionally relevant difference between intentional epistemic actions inside the head and environment involving epistemic actions. I argue that his argument succeeds and that because of that either epistemic intentional environment involving actions are literally a form of cognition and extended cognition is true or they are not and then epistemic intentional actions in deliberation are no more truly cognitive than their environment involving counterparts. The last disjunct escapes Levy’s argument because it claims that there is a distinct non-intentional form of agency but it also has some rather counter intuitive consequences not least that it is not very clear what makes this form of agency agentive.

Further information

We are a group of researchers from diverse backgrounds in the above-mentioned groups (and beyond) who aim to gain an interdisciplinary yet deep understanding of the threads that bind the human mind and the world. In particular, this seminar series focuses on the nature of cognition, metacognition and social cognition. We’ll be tackling questions such as, what does it mean to think? What does it mean to think about thinking? And, what does it mean to think about one’s own thinking versus thinking about the thinking of other people? Please come along!

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Contact details

Tillmann Vierkant

Feb 02 2022 -

PPIG: Philosophy, Psychology, and Informatics Group

2022-02-02: Is deliberating something we do?

Room 2.12, Appleton Tower, 11 Crichton Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9LE