Lessons and new directions for extended cognition from social and personality psychology

Philosophical Psychology 30 (4):458-480 (2017)
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This paper aims to expand the range of empirical work relevant to the extended cognition debates. First, I trace the historical development of the person-situation debate in social and personality psychology and the extended cognition debate in the philosophy of mind. Next, I highlight some instructive similarities between the two and consider possible objections to my comparison. I then argue that the resolution of the person-situation debate in terms of interactionism lends support for an analogously interactionist conception of extended cognition. I argue that this interactionism might necessitate a shift away from the dominant agent-artifact paradigm toward an agent–agent paradigm. If this is right, then social and personality psychology—the discipline(s) that developed from the person-situation debate—opens a whole new range of empirical considerations for extended cognition theorists which align with Clark & Chalmers original vision of agents themselves as spread into the world.

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