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Psychology and Psychotechnics

Externalistic Paradigm in Cognitive Science
Ivanov Dmitry Valer'evich

Doctor of Philosophy

Leading Researcher at Institute of Philosophy of the Russian Academy of Sciences

109240, Russia, g. Moscow, ul. Goncharnaya, 12 str. 1, of. 418



The subject of the research is the externalistic paradigm that can be used to understand mental processes. The author of the article analyzes this paradigm from the point of view of its usability in cognitive science. Ivanov focuses on the research of externalism potentials for solving a difficult mental issue, i.e. the problem of the naturalist explanation of the phenomenal aspects of conscious experience. In his research Ivanov also analyzes different variants of externalism and concludes that only externalism of the content as it is offered by Josh McDowell can explain both the nature of the mental contents and phenomenal qualities of the conscious experience from the naturalistic point of view. The research is based on modern analytic philosophy of mind and philosophy of cognitive science which implies the extensive use of the conceptual analysis method and such methodological techniques such as analysis of mental experiments. The novelty of the research is caused by the fact that the author demonstrates that in order to understand the nature of mental processes, it is enough to define two kinds of externalism: externalism regarding mental states and externalism regarding contents. Noteworthy that the main role here is given to externalism regarding concent while externalism regarding mental states plays only supplementary role despite the fact that it has been growing popular in cognitive science as a result of enactivism lately. 

Keywords: representationalism, enactivism, extended mind, the problem of consciousness, qualia, mental content, externalism, philosophy of mind, philosophy of cognitive science, direct realism



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