JoLMA The Journal for the Philosophy of Language, Mind and the Arts

Rivista | JoLMA
Fascicolo | 4 | 2 | 2023
Articolo | Extending the Concept of Cognition and Meta‑Theoretical Anthropomorphism

Extending the Concept of Cognition and Meta‑Theoretical Anthropomorphism

Abstract

How to deal with the controversies surrounding applying the concept of COGNITION to non-humans? I suggest a bottom-up approach that makes room for the pluralistic perspectives of non-human cognition researchers without disregarding philosophers’ worries about overextending the concept. My proposal is that COGNITION should be a holistic story, in which no part can be understood without the context of the whole. If such a project is to succeed, however, we need to deal with anthropomorphism – not of the well-known, superficial kind, but understood as a deeply embedded framework determining how we understand cognitive life in general. After explaining what this kind of meta-theoretical anthropomorphism is, I argue that investigating non-human cognition is the best way to make explicit many of our hidden assumptions and re-examine them. In the second section of the paper, I present how this approach can be effective in reconsidering Brandom’s proposal of how to define levels of concept use for the purposes of empirical research on non-humans.


Open access | Peer reviewed

Presentato: 02 Ottobre 2023 | Accettato: 04 Dicembre 2023 | Pubblicato 07 Febbraio 2024 | Lingua: en

Keywords Anthropomorphism Extending cognition Concepts Animal cognition Plant cognition


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