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Somogy Varga
Aarhus University
  1. Background Emotions, Proximity and Distributed Emotion Regulation.Somogy Varga & Joel Krueger - 2013 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 4 (2):271-292.
    In this paper, we draw on developmental findings to provide a nuanced understanding of background emotions, particularly those in depression. We demonstrate how they reflect our basic proximity (feeling of interpersonal connectedness) to others and defend both a phenomenological and a functional claim. First, we substantiate a conjecture by Fonagy & Target (International Journal of Psychoanalysis 88(4):917–937, 2007) that an important phenomenological aspect of depression is the experiential recreation of the infantile loss of proximity to significant others. Second, we argue (...)
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  2. On the roles of false belief and recalcitrant fear in anorexia nervosa.Somogy Varga & Asbjørn Steglich-Petersen - 2023 - Mind and Language (5):1296-1313.
    The DSM‐5 highlights two essential psychological features of anorexia nervosa (AN): recalcitrant fear of gaining weight and body image disturbance. Prominent accounts grant false beliefs about body weight and shape a central role in the explanation of AN behavior. In this article, we propose a stronger emphasis on recalcitrant fear. We show that such fear can explain AN behavior without the intermediary of a false belief, and thus without the associated explanatory burdens and conceptual difficulties. We illustrate how shifting the (...)
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  3. Scaffolded Minds: Integration and Disintegration.Somogy Varga - 2019 - Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
    Scaffolded Minds offers a novel account of cognitive scaffolding and its significance for understanding mental disorders. The book is part of the growing philosophical engagement with empirically informed philosophy of mind, which studies the interfaces between philosophy and cognitive science. It draws on two recent shifts within empirically informed philosophy of mind: the first, toward an intensified study of the embodied mind; and the second, toward a study of the disordered mind that acknowledges the convergence of the explanatory concerns of (...)
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  4. The Aim of Medicine. Sanocentricity and the Autonomy Thesis.Somogy Varga - 2023 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly (4):720-745.
    Recent criticisms of medicine converge on fundamental questions about the aim of medicine. The main task of this paper is to propose an account of the aim of medicine. Discussing and rejecting the initially plausible proposal according to which medicine is pathocentric, the paper presents and defends the Autonomy Thesis, which holds that medicine is not pathocentric, but sanocentric, aiming to promote health with the final aim to enhance autonomy. The paper closes by considering the objection that the Autonomy Thesis (...)
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  5. Body Checking in Anorexia Nervosa: from Inquiry to Habit.Asbjørn Steglich-Petersen & Somogy Varga - forthcoming - Review of Philosophy and Psychology:1-18.
    Body checking, characterized by the repeated visual or physical inspection of particular parts of one’s own body (e.g. thighs, waist, or upper arms) is one of the most prominent behaviors associated with eating disorders, particularly Anorexia Nervosa (AN). In this paper, we explore the explanatory potential of the Recalcitrant Fear Model of AN (RFM) in relation to body checking. We argue that RFM, when combined with certain plausible auxiliary hypotheses about the cognitive and epistemic roles of emotions, is able to (...)
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  6. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and Recalcitrant Emotion: Relocating the Seat of Irrationality.Asbjørn Steglich-Petersen & Somogy Varga - forthcoming - Philosophical Psychology:1-26.
    It is widely agreed that obsessive-compulsive disorder involves irrationality. But where in the complex of states and processes that constitutes OCD should this irrationality be located? A pervasive assumption in both the psychiatric and philosophical literature is that the seat of irrationality is located in the obsessive thoughts characteristic of OCD. Building on a puzzle about insight into OCD (Taylor 2022), we challenge this pervasive assumption, and argue instead that the irrationality of OCD is located in the emotions that are (...)
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  7. Curiosity and Zetetic Style in ADHD.Asbjørn Steglich-Petersen & Somogy Varga - forthcoming - Philosophical Psychology.
    While research on Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) has traditionally focused on cognitive and behavioral deficits, there is increasing interest in exploring possible resources associated with the disorder. In this paper, we argue that the attention-patterns associated with ADHD can be understood as expressing an alternative style of inquiry, or “zetetic” style, characterized mainly by a lower barrier for becoming curious and engaging in inquiry, and a weaker disposition to regulate curiosity in response to the cognitive and practical costs associated (...)
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  8. Respiratory rhythms of the predictive mind.Micah Allen, Somogy Varga & Detlef H. Heck - 2022 - Psychological Review (4):1066-1080.
    Respiratory rhythms sustain biological life, governing the homeostatic exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide. Until recently, however, the influence of breathing on the brain has largely been overlooked. Yet new evidence demonstrates that the act of breathing exerts a substantive, rhythmic influence on perception, emotion, and cognition, largely through the direct modulation of neural oscillations. Here, we synthesize these findings to motivate a new predictive coding model of respiratory brain coupling, in which breathing rhythmically modulates both local and global neural (...)
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  9. Perceptual Experience and Cognitive Penetrability.Somogy Varga - 2017 - European Journal of Philosophy 25 (2):376-397.
    This paper starts by distinguishing three views about the phenomenal character of perceptual experience. ‘Low-level theorists’ argue that perceptual experience is reducible to the experience of low-level properties, ‘high-level theorists’ argue that we have perceptual experiences of high-level properties, while ‘disunified view theorists’ argue that perceptual seemings can present high-level properties. The paper explores how cognitive states can penetrate perceptual experience and provides an interpretation of cognitive penetration that offers some support for the high-level view.
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  10.  63
    Health, Disease, and the Medicalization of Low Sexual Desire: A Vignette-Based Experimental Study.Somogy Varga, Andrew J. Latham & Jacob Stegenga - forthcoming - Ergo.
    Debates about the genuine disease status of controversial diseases rely on intuitions about a range of factors. Adopting tools from experimental philosophy, this paper explores some of the factors that influence judgments about whether low sexual desire should be considered a disease and whether it should be medically treated. Drawing in part on some assumptions underpinning a divide in the literature between viewing low sexual desire as a genuine disease and seeing it as improperly medicalized, we investigate whether health and (...)
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  11.  63
    The criticism of medicine at the end of its “golden age”.Somogy Varga - 2022 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 43 (5):401-419.
    Medicine is increasingly subject to various forms of criticism. This paper focuses on dominant forms of criticism and offers a better account of their normative character. It is argued that together, these forms of criticism are comprehensive, raising questions about both medical science and medical practice. Furthermore, it is shown that these forms of criticism mainly rely on standards of evaluation that are assumed to be internal to medicine and converge on a broader question about the aim of medicine. Further (...)
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  12.  37
    Could Dehumanization Be Perceptual?Somogy Varga - 2021 - In Kronfeldner, M.E. (2020) Routledge Handbook of Dehumanization.
    A large part of the contemporary literature on dehumanization is committed to three ideas: (a) dehumanization involves some degree of denial of humanness, (b) such denial is to be comprehended in mental terms, and (c) whatever exact mechanisms underlie the denial of humanness, they belong in the realm of post-perceptual processing. This chapter examines (c) and argues that the awareness of minds might belong to perceptual processing. This paves the way for the possibility that dehumanization might, at least in part, (...)
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  13. Non-dynamism and temporal disturbances.Sam Baron, Andrew J. Latham & Somogy Varga - 2023 - Synthese 202 (2).
    Philosophical accounts denying that temporal passage is an objective feature of reality face an explanatory challenge with respect to why it appears to us as though time passes. Recently, two solutions have surfaced. Cognitive illusionism claims that people experience the passage of time due to their belief that time passes. Cognitive error theory claims that we do not experience the passage of time, but hold the belief that we do, which we have acquired through making an inference from the prior (...)
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  14. Freedom, moral responsibility, and the failure of universal defeat.Andrew J. Latham, Somogy Varga & Hannah Tierney - 2023 - Philosophical Issues 33 (1):252-269.
    Proponents of manipulation arguments against compatibilism hold that manipulation scope (how many agents are manipulated) and manipulation type (whether the manipulator intends that an agent perform a particular action) do not impact judgments about free will and moral responsibility. Many opponents of manipulation arguments agree that manipulation scope has no impact but hold that manipulation type does. Recent work by Latham and Tierney (2022, 2023) found that people's judgments were sensitive to manipulation scope: people judged that an agent was less (...)
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  15. Editorial Introduction: Socializing the Extended Mind.Michele Merritt, Somogy Varga & Mog Stapleton - 2013 - Cognitive Systems Research 25:1-3.
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  16.  45
    The continuity of inquiry and normative philosophy of science.Somogy Varga - 2021 - Metaphilosophy 52 (5):655-667.
    This paper aims to contribute to debates about the nature of philosophical inquiry and its relation to science. The starting point is the Discontinuity View (DV), which holds that philosophy is discontinuous with science. Upon critically engaging two lines of argument in favor of DV, the paper presents and defends the Continuity View (CV), according to which philosophy and science are continuous forms of inquiry. The critical engagement sheds light on continuities between philosophical and scientific inquiry while underlining special normative (...)
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