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The Extended Mind$
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Richard Menary

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780262014038

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262014038.001.0001

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Coupling, Constitution, and the Cognitive Kind: A Reply to Adams and Aizawa

Coupling, Constitution, and the Cognitive Kind: A Reply to Adams and Aizawa

(p.81) 5 Coupling, Constitution, and the Cognitive Kind: A Reply to Adams and Aizawa
The Extended Mind

Andy Clark

The MIT Press

This chapter focuses on the effort of Adams and Aizawa to refute the arguments presented by Clark and Chalmers regarding the extended mind. Using the famous example of the pencil, Adams and Aizawa show that the extended mind theory falls victim to the “coupling-constitution fallacy,” one often evident in the pervading literature for the extended mind. This fallacy, attributed to Van Gelder and Port (1995), Clark and Chalmers (1998), Haugeland (1998), Dennett (2000), Clark (2001), Gibbs (2001), and Wilson (2004), jumps to the conclusion that the causal coupling of some object or process to some cognitive agent makes it part of the cognitive agent or its cognitive processing ability. Adams and Aizawa assert that extended mind theorists commit this fallacy because they fail to recognize and appreciate “what makes something a cognitive agent.”

Keywords:   extended mind theory, Adams, Aizawa, Clark, Chalmers, example of the pencil, coupling-constitution fallacy, causal coupling, cognitive agent, cognitive processing

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