The Bodily Basis of Thought

New Ideas in Psychology 18 (1):23-40 (2000)
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Classical cognitivist and connectionist models posit a Cartesian disembodiment of mind assuming that brain events can adequately explain thought and related notions such as intellect. Instead, we argue for the bodily basis of thought and its continuity beyond the sensorimotor stage. Indeed, there are no eternally fixed representations of the external world in the "motor system," rather, it is under the guidance of both internal and external factors with important linkages to frontal, parietal, cerebellar, basal ganglionic, and cingulate gyrus areas that subserve cognitive and motivational activities. Indeed, the motor system, including related structures, is a self-organizing dynamical system contextualized among musculoskeletal, environmental (e.g., gravity), and social forces. We do not simply inhabit our bodies; we literally use them to think with.

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