Realization, Reduction And Psychological Autonomy

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Abstract

It is often thought that the computational paradigm provides a supporting case for the theoretical autonomy of the science of mind. However, I argue that computation is in fact incompatible with this alleged aspect of intentional explanation, and hence the foundational assumptions of orthodox cognitive science are mutually unstable. The most plausible way to relieve these foundational tensions is to relinquish the idea that the psychological level enjoys some special form of theoretical sovereignty. So, in contrast to well known antireductionist views based on multiple realizability, I argue that the primary goal of a computational approach to the mind should be to facilitate a translation of the psychological to the neurophysiological.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)383-405
Number of pages23
JournalSynthese
Volume126
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2001

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