Visual awareness and visuomotor action

$28.95 plus tax (Refund Policy)

Buy Article:

Abstract:

Recent work in ‘embodied, embedded’ cognitive science links mental contents to large-scale distributed effects: dynamic patterns implicating elements of (what are traditionally seen as) sensing, reasoning and acting. Central to this approach is an idea of biological cognition as profoundly ‘action-oriented’ -- geared not to the creation of rich, passive inner models of the world, but to the cheap and efficient production of real-world action in real-world context. A case in point is Hurley's (1998) account of the profound role of motor output in fixing the contents of conscious visual awareness -- an account that also emphasizes distributed vehicles and long-range dynamical loops. Such stories can seem dramatically opposed to accounts, such as Milner and Goodale (1995), that stress relatively local mechanisms and that posit firm divisions between processes of visual awareness and of visuomotor action. But such accounts, I argue, can be deeply complementary and together illustrate an important lesson. The lesson is that cognition may be embodied and action-oriented in two distinct -- but complementary -- ways. There is a way of being embodied and action-oriented that implies being closely geared to the fine-grained control of low level effectors (hands, arms, legs and so on). And there is a way of being embodied and action-oriented that implies being closely geared to gross motor intentions, current goals, and schematic motor plans. Human cognition, I suggest, is embodied and action-oriented in both these ways. But the neural systems involved, and the size and scope of the key dynamic loops, may be quite different in each case.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Philosophy, Washington University, Campus Box 1073, One Brookings Drive, St Louis, MO 63130-4899, USA.

Publication date: January 1, 1999

Related content

Tools

Favourites

Share Content

Access Key

Free Content
Free content
New Content
New content
Open Access Content
Open access content
Subscribed Content
Subscribed content
Free Trial Content
Free trial content
Cookie Policy
X
Cookie Policy
ingentaconnect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more