Believing that the enterprise of constructing "artificial intelligence" transcends the bounds of any one discipline, the editors of Mechanical Bodies, Computational Minds have brought together researchers in AI and scholars in the humanities to reexamine the fundamental assumptions of both areas. The AI community, for example, could benefit from explorations of human intelligence and creativity by philosophers, psychologists, anthropologists, literary critics, and others, while analysis of AI's theoretical struggles and technical advances could yield insights into such traditional humanist concerns as the nature of rationality and the mind-body dichotomy.
The contributions include a continuation of the famous Hubert Dreyfus-Daniel Dennett debate over Kasparov's defeat by IBM's Big Blue; Philip Agre's tracing of difficulties in AI research to the inherited tensions of Cartesian dualism; Evelyn Fox Keller's examination of the development of computer technology in relation to biology; Douglas Hofstadter's argument that thinking is more than the theorem-solving activities of AI; and Alison Adam's discussion of the implicitly male universal subject used in AI.
About the Editors
Stefano Franchi is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Auckland.
Güven Güzeldere is Assistant Professor of Philosophy
and Assistant Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Duke University. He is coeditor (with Ned Block and Owen Flanagan)
of The Nature of Consciousness: Philosophical and Scientific Debates (MIT Press, 1998) and a founding associate editor of
Psyche: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Consciousness.