April 17, 2017 at 1:07 pm (Presentations)
Tags: cognitive archaeology, origins of art, symbolic mind
I was invited to give a talk at UNAM’s Instituto de Investigaciones Filosoficas this Wednesday as part of the Rationality, Reasoning, and Cognition seminar series. The title of my contribution is “How did humans overcome the cognitive gap? On the origins of the symbolic mind”. Details in the flyer below:
March 28, 2017 at 4:32 pm (Events, Presentations)
Tags: anthropology, cognitive science, embodied cognition, embodied memory
The Marsilius-Kolleg is organizing a conference series on the topic of comprehensive anthropology.
Next month the series will start with an International Conference on the Formation of Embodied Memory, which will take place at the University of Heidelberg, April 6-8. I was invited to give a talk:
Dynamics of Embodied Memory: Temporality, Spatiality, and Sociality
This talk presents a dynamical systems analysis of the temporal processes that contribute to the constitution of embodied memory. Three kinds of extra-neural processes will be considered: 1) physiological dynamics, 2) movement dynamics, and 2) social interaction dynamics. Their potential to serve as forms of memory will be illustrated on the basis of three simple agent-based models. These examples help to demonstrate the problems faced by a purely brain-based account of the self and its capacities. They also support the adoption of a broader notion of forgetting, which takes into account the cognitive effects of undergoing changes in one’s relationship to the spatial and social environment, for example displacement from one’s home and separation from one’s acquaintances.
March 14, 2017 at 12:36 pm (Presentations)
Tags: agent-based models, autonomy, autopoiesis, indeterminism, phenomenon of life
I was invited to lead the discussion in a session of the Seminar of Science and Society at the Centre for the Sciences of Complexity. I will focus on the relationship between autonomy and uncertainty. Details can be found in the flyer below:
November 27, 2016 at 4:34 pm (Events, Presentations)
Today we will have a workshop on “The Origins and Nature of Contentful Minds: Continuity, Transformation, Integration?” in the University of Wollongong’s Research Hub, Building 19 – Room 2072. The program can be downloaded here.
My contribution is entitled: “Does the evolved apprentice model remain in the zone of latent solutions?”
Then from Wednesday to Friday there will be the 2016 UOW Philosophy Training Conference, where I will give an invited talk with the title “Hallucinations: Inner fictions, outer realities, or something in between?”
September 26, 2016 at 10:44 am (Events, Presentations)
Tags: complexity, interdisciplinarity
The prestigious Colegio Nacional of Mexico is holding a two-day event on complexity and interdisciplinarity “Entendiendo la complejidad: La multidisciplina en las ciencias“, September 27-28.
The event is open to the public and will be broadcast live.
I was invited to give a talk about my research as a member of the Centro de Ciencias de la Complejidad.
The title of my talk is “La organización política de Teotihuacan como sistema complejo”, and is scheduled to start tomorrow at 18:15.
The full program can be found here.
August 18, 2016 at 10:52 am (Presentations)
Tags: cognitive science, individuality, origins of life, theory of mind
I have been invited to give a talk at the EON Workshop on History and Philosophy of Origins Research, which will be held August 24-26 at the Earth-Life Science Institute in Tokyo.
The title and abstract of my contribution are as follows:
The concept of the individual in cognitive science and origins of life
The field of cognitive science was inaugurated on the basis of the computational theory of mind. The metaphor of the digital computer had several implications: it restricted the field to understanding all of cognition in terms of the manipulation of symbols; it focused research on passive information processing; and it limited the scope of inquiry to processes taking place within the physical boundaries of the system. This concept of an individual, as a system engaged in passive internal symbol manipulation, seems to be implicitly shared by theories of the origins of life that are focused on encapsulated processing of informational molecules. Yet in cognitive science this concept of the individual has been undergoing a series of deep revisions, such that it is now replaced by its exact opposite: an individual is seen as primarily a system that is embodied, extended, and as actively engaged in direct relations with the physical and social environment. I analyze what origins of life research could learn from this shift in the history of cognitive science.
March 21, 2016 at 11:34 am (Presentations, Visits)
Tags: altered states of consciousness, enaction, language, sensorimotor approach
I have been invited as a keynote speaker to the First International Conference on Language and Enaction, which will take place June 1-3 in Clermont-Ferrand, France.
The title and abstract of my talk are as follows:
From lower to higher, from self to other: Approaching the phenomenon of language from the bottom up
The enactive approach to cognitive science is currently faced by the challenge of overcoming the cognitive gap between its theories of the basic organismic mind and specifically human capacities centered on symbolic cognition. At the same time there appears to be a tension between its self-related concepts, such as autopoiesis and adaptivity, and its other-related concepts, such as participatory sense-making and languaging. I argue that these tensions can be resolved in a complementary fashion by clarifying that enactive theory does not adhere to an internalist epistemology, which can be most clearly seen in terms of its rejection of methodological individualism. Once our thinking is freed from that isolating framework it becomes evident that the enactive approach has the potential to become a fruitful paradigm for linguistics. I finish by considering its implications for language evolution, in particular regarding claims of innateness based on the assumption of the poverty of the stimulus as well as gesture-first theories.
To kick off this trip to Europe I will also give two seminars:
On May 30 I will talk about “Ritualized mind alteration and the origins of the symbolic mind: Recent insights from cognitive science” at the Collegium Helveticum in Zurich.
And on May 31 I will give a talk with the title “Can we extend the sensorimotor approach to social perception?” at Kevin O’Regan’s FEEL project lab in Paris.