Investigating the Constitution of the Shared World
Recent accounts of cognition attempt to overcome the limitations of traditional cognitive science by reconceiving cognition as enactive and the cognizer as an embodied being who is embedded in biological, psychological, and cultural contexts. Cultural forms of sense-making constitute the shared world, which in turn is the origin and place of cognition. This volume is the first interdisciplinary collection on the cultural context of embodiment, offering perspectives that range from the neurophilosophical to the anthropological.
The book brings together new contributions by some of the most renowned scholars in the field and the latest results from up-and-coming researchers. The contributors explore conceptual foundations, drawing on work by Husserl, Merleau-Ponty, and Sartre, and respond to recent critiques. They consider whether there is something in the self that precedes intersubjectivity and inquire into the relation between culture and consciousness, the nature of shared meaning and social understanding, the social dimension of shame, and the nature of joint affordances. They apply the notion of radical enactive cognition to evolutionary anthropology, and examine the concept of the body in relation to culture in light of studies in such fields as phenomenology, cognitive neuroscience, psychology, and psychopathology. Through such investigations, the book breaks ground for the study of the interplay of embodiment, enaction, and culture.
Mark Bickhard, Ingar Brinck, Anna Ciaunica, Hanne De Jaegher, Nicolas de Warren, Ezequiel Di Paolo, Christoph Durt, John Z. Elias, Joerg Fingerhut, Aikaterini Fotopoulou, Thomas Fuchs, Shaun Gallagher, Vittorio Gallese, Duilio Garofoli, Katrin Heimann, Peter Henningsen, Daniel D. Hutto, Laurence J. Kirmayer, Alba Montes Sánchez, Dermot Moran, Maxwell J. D. Ramstead, Matthew Ratcliffe, Vasudevi Reddy, Zuzanna Rucińska, Alessandro Salice, Glenda Satne, Heribert Sattel, Christian Tewes, Dan Zahavi
Contents of the Book
Christian Tewes, Christoph Durt, and Thomas Fuchs
I Phenomenological and Enactive Accounts of the Constitution of Culture
1 Intercorporeality and Intersubjectivity: A Phenomenological Exploration of Embodiment 25
2 We Are, Therefore I Am—I Am, Therefore We Are: The Third in Sartre’s Social Ontology 47
Nicolas de Warren
4 Neither Individualistic nor Interactionist 87
Ezequiel Di Paolo and Hanne De Jaegher
5 Continuity Skepticism in Doubt: A Radically Enactive Take 107
Daniel D. Hutto and Glenda Satne
II Intersubjectivity, Selfhood, and Persons 129
6 The Primacy of the “We”? 131
Ingar Brinck, Vasudevi Reddy, and Dan Zahavi
7 Selfhood, Schizophrenia, and the Interpersonal Regulation of Experience 149
8 The Touched Self: Psychological and Philosophical Perspectives on Proximal Intersubjectivity and the Self 173
Anna Ciaunica and Aikaterini Fotopoulou
9 Thin, Thinner, Thinnest: Defining the Minimal Self 193
10 The Emergence of Persons 201
Mark H. Bickhard
III Cultural Affordances and Social Understanding 215
11 The Significance and Meaning of Others 217
12 Feeling Ashamed of Myself Because of You 229
Alba Montes Sánchez and Alessandro Salice
13 The Extent of Our Abilities: The Presence, Salience, and Sociality of Affordances 245
John Z. Elias
14 The Role of Affordances in Pretend Play 257
15 Ornamental Feathers without Mentalism: A Radical Enactive View on Neanderthal Body Adornment 279
IV Embodiment and Its Cultural Significance 307
16 Neoteny and Social Cognition: A Neuroscientific Perspective on Embodiment 309
17 Collective Body Memories 333
18 Movies and the Mind: On Our Filmic Body 353
Joerg Fingerhut and Katrin Heimann
19 Painful Bodies at Work: Stress and Culture? 379
Peter Henningsen and Heribert Sattel
20 Embodiment and Enactment in Cultural Psychiatry 397
Laurence J. Kirmayer and Maxwell J. D. Ramstead
This MIT Press volume edited by Durt et al. (2017) is concerned with investigating how people bring about a shared sociocultural world through participatory and broader collective sense-making processes, while at the same time highlighting how the participants in these social processes are themselves transformed by the world they help to bring forth. The key insight that runs through this interdisciplinary collection of 20 chapters is the irreducible nature of this interdependence between individual and collective processes: participation in, and hence the cultural reproduction of, patterned practices of the social world is only realizable via a thorough transformation of individual embodied minds.
[T]his volume presents a provocative array of empirically informed research in the philosophy of embodiment. The chapters vary in their degree of specificity, but all of them together make a compelling case for the critical role that the body plays in making sense of the interpersonal, social, and cultural worlds.
Tom Sparrow in his review in The Review of Metaphysics (paywall) 71 (2):379–382, published December, 2017.
[T]he chapters included in this volume present new insights, refinements of the debates and extremely valuable contributions to our understandings of the cultural dimensions of subjectivity and intersubjectivity both in anomalous experiential contexts and in the everyday context.
Anya Daly in her review in Phenomenological Reviews, published on December 14, 2017
[T]he book provides a clear account of what enactivism amounts to, what it takes for granted, and how far it can be pushed.
Bryce Huebner in his review in NDPR, published on August 9, 2017.
The book edited by Durt, Fuchs and Tewes is then recommended to anyone interested in the current discussions on intersubjectivity and we-intentionality, and in the challenge of uncovering new aspects in the paradigms of embodiment.
Maria Chiara Bruttomesso in her review in Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences (paywall) 16 (5):993–998, published on June 21, 2017.