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"Physicalism in the Social Sciences, Methods, Mechanisms, Agency" blog

Neuroscience Developments and the Mind

 

Here is a recent article from the New Yorker that reviews some recent books on the topic of Neuroscience in behavioral explanations.
 
http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/books/2013/09/09/130909crbo_books_gopnik?currentPage=1
 
There is a reductionist persuasion that seeks to reduce all explanations of cultural developments and personal intentions to neural activity or 'brain states', whereas culture and symbolic novelty operate as an explanatory factor in the 'social construction' camp.  These two opposites constitute the extremes of the nature vs. culture debate that we have inherited from academic history.  What is the role of precise, rigorous findings in scientific experiments when discussing and understanding something as ambiguous as the mind?  This space between naturalistic scientific research and explanations of social significance is where we would like to situate the discussion for 'Physicalism in the Social Sciences, Methods, Mechanisms, Agency'.

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