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Representation Reconsidered

Cognitive representation is the single most important explanatory notion in the sciences of the mind and has served as the cornerstone for the so-called 'cognitive revolution'. This book, originally published in 2007, critically examines the ways in which philosophers and cognitive scientists appeal to representations in their theories, and argues that there is considerable confusion about the nature of representational states. This has led to an excessive over-application of the notion - especially in many of the fresher theories in computational neuroscience. Representation Reconsidered shows how psychological research is actually moving in a non-representational direction, revealing a radical, though largely unnoticed, shift in our basic understanding of how the mind works.
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Table of Contents

List of figures; Preface; 1. Demands on a representational theory; 2. Representation in classical computational theories: the standard interpretation and its problems; 3. Two notions of representation in the classical computational framework; 4. The receptor notion and its problems; 5. Tacit representation and its problems; 6. Where is the representational paradigm headed?; References; Index.


Review of the hardback: 'A must read for those interested in the role of representation in cognitive science, and a nice review of the literature along the way that will be appreciated by both students and scholars.' Robert Cummins, University of Illinois '... a superb insightful analysis of the notion of mental representation in cognitive science. The book presents an original argument for a bold conclusion: partial eliminativism about mental representation in scientific psychology ... I would warmly recommend Ramsey's book to anyone working on representation.' Mark Sprevak, The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science '[This] book makes a well-informed, carefully argued and convincing case for its core argument. Everyone who is seriously interested in the philosophy of cognitive science and the status of psychological theorizing should read it.' Daniel D. Hutto, Philosophical Psychology

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