Newsletter 72/ 03.12.2014
HGGS Workshop: "New hybrid theories of social cognition"
When? 8 December 2014
Where? Neue Uni HS 12
New hybrid theories of social cognition
Until recently, debates about social cognition have been dominated by approaches framed around the notions of mindreading under the general heading of ‘theory of mind’. Since the 1980s theory (TT) and simulation theory (ST) have been the dominant theories addressing social cognition. In some cases there have been attempts to form hybrid theories that rely on both the TT appeal to inferences based on folk psychology and the ST appeal to either explicit or implicit simulation routines. Over the past several years there has been renewed debate about the notion of direct perception in the context of social cognition (call this direct social perception or DSP). As part of this debate several theorists have argued that DSP is not a true alternative, but is consistent with TT and/or ST. I’ll use the phrase the ‘new hybrids’ to refer to those theories that propose some version of DSP as compatible with TT or ST. Some of the new hybrid approaches attempt to combined TT or ST with a more embodied interaction theory (IT). In some cases, however, the new hybrids try to integrate DSP with TT or ST independently of IT. Just because of these variations, it may be useful to map out the theoretical possibilities. In this presentation I propose to do more than that. I also examine the various arguments in favor of a new hybridization. I’ll argue that most of them remain too narrowly focused, and that the best model for a new hybrid is a pluralist one that recognizes many contributories to a full account of social cognition.
Prof. Dr. Shaun Gallagher
Humboldt Foundation Anneliese Maier Research Fellow 2012 – 17
Lillian and Morrie Moss Chair of Excellence in Philosophy
University of Memphis
Dr. Ben Morgan
Chair of the Sub-Faculty of German
Dean, and Fellow and Tutor in German
University of Oxford
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