Erik Myin

Erik Myin is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Antwerp and coauthor of Radicalizing Enactivism: Basic Minds without Content (MIT Press).

  • Evolving Enactivism

    Evolving Enactivism

    Basic Minds Meet Content

    Daniel D. Hutto and Erik Myin

    An extended argument that cognitive phenomena—perceiving, imagining, remembering—can be best explained in terms of an interface between contentless and content-involving forms of cognition.

    Evolving Enactivism argues that cognitive phenomena—perceiving, imagining, remembering—can be best explained in terms of an interface between contentless and content-involving forms of cognition. Building on their earlier book Radicalizing Enactivism, which proposes that there can be forms of cognition without content, Daniel Hutto and Erik Myin demonstrate the unique explanatory advantages of recognizing that only some forms of cognition have content while others—the most elementary ones—do not. They offer an account of the mind in duplex terms, proposing a complex vision of mentality in which these basic contentless forms of cognition interact with content-involving ones.

    Hutto and Myin argue that the most basic forms of cognition do not, contrary to a currently popular account of cognition, involve picking up and processing information that is then used, reused, stored, and represented in the brain. Rather, basic cognition is contentless—fundamentally interactive, dynamic, and relational. In advancing the case for a radically enactive account of cognition, Hutto and Myin propose crucial adjustments to our concept of cognition and offer theoretical support for their revolutionary rethinking, emphasizing its capacity to explain basic minds in naturalistic terms. They demonstrate the explanatory power of the duplex vision of cognition, showing how it offers powerful means for understanding quintessential cognitive phenomena without introducing scientifically intractable mysteries into the mix.

    • Hardcover $35.00
  • Radicalizing Enactivism

    Radicalizing Enactivism

    Basic Minds without Content

    Daniel D. Hutto and Erik Myin

    A book that promotes the thesis that basic forms of mentality—intentionally directed cognition and perceptual experience—are best understood as embodied yet contentless.

    Most of what humans do and experience is best understood in terms of dynamically unfolding interactions with the environment. Many philosophers and cognitive scientists now acknowledge the critical importance of situated, environment-involving embodied engagements as a means of understanding basic minds—including basic forms of human mentality. Yet many of these same theorists hold fast to the view that basic minds are necessarily or essentially contentful—that they represent conditions the world might be in. In this book, Daniel Hutto and Erik Myin promote the cause of a radically enactive, embodied approach to cognition that holds that some kinds of minds—basic minds—are neither best explained by processes involving the manipulation of contents nor inherently contentful. Hutto and Myin oppose the widely endorsed thesis that cognition always and everywhere involves content. They defend the counter-thesis that there can be intentionality and phenomenal experience without content, and demonstrate the advantages of their approach for thinking about scaffolded minds and consciousness.

    • Hardcover $45.00
    • Paperback $30.00

Contributor

  • Disturbed Consciousness

    Disturbed Consciousness

    New Essays on Psychopathology and Theories of Consciousness

    Rocco J. Gennaro

    Essays defend, discuss, and critique specific theories of consciousness with respect to various psychopathologies.

    In Disturbed Consciousness, philosophers and other scholars examine various psychopathologies in light of specific philosophical theories of consciousness. The contributing authors—some of them discussing or defending their own theoretical work—consider not only how a theory of consciousness can account for a specific psychopathological condition but also how the characteristics of a psychopathology might challenge such a theory. Thus one essay defends the higher-order thought (HOT) theory of consciousness against the charge that it cannot account for somatoparaphrenia (a delusion in which one denies ownership of a limb). Another essay argues that various attempts to explain away such anomalies within subjective theories of consciousness fail.

    Other essays consider such topics as the application of a model of unified consciousness to cases of brain bisection and dissociative identity disorder; prefrontal and parietal underconnectivity in autism and other psychopathologies; self-deception and the self-model theory of subjectivity; schizophrenia and the vehicle theory of consciousness; and a shift in emphasis away from an internal (or brainbound) approach to psychopathology to an interactive one. Each essay offers a distinctive perspective from the intersection of philosophy, consciousness research, and psychiatry.

    Contributors Alexandre Billon, Andrew Brook, Paula Droege, Rocco J. Gennaro, Philip Gerrans, William Hirstein, Jakob Hohwy, Uriah Kriegel, Timothy Lane, Thomas Metzinger, Erik Myin, Inez Myin-Germeys, Myrto Mylopoulos, Gerard O'Brien, Jon Opie, J. Kevin O'Regan, Iuliia Pliushch, Robert Van Gulick

    • Hardcover $50.00