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Foundational Issues in Human Brain Mapping$
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Stephen Jose Hanson and Martin Bunzl

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780262014021

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262014021.001.0001

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Neuroimaging and Inferential Distance: The Perils of Pictures

Neuroimaging and Inferential Distance: The Perils of Pictures

(p.195) 16 Neuroimaging and Inferential Distance: The Perils of Pictures
Foundational Issues in Human Brain Mapping

Adina L. Roskies

The MIT Press

This chapter focuses on neuroimaging and inferential distance. It discusses the role played by various neuroimaging techniques in understanding brain activity, with special emphasis on functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and provides information on the interpretation of neuroimages and its epistemic status. The chapter examines the relation between conclusions of cognitive neuroimaging studies and the data on which they are based, and provides a detailed discussion on the mismatch between actual inferential distance and the apparent inferential distance between neuroimages. It also discusses the role of photography in neuroimaging studies, with its three prominent features: Mimesis, counterfactual dependence, and theory-independence.

Keywords:   inferential distance, actual inferential distance, apparent inferential distance, mimesis, counterfactual dependence, theory-independence

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