Skip to main content

Reduction, elimination, and levels: the case of the LTP-learning link

Buy Article:

$47.50 plus tax (Refund Policy)

We argue in this paper that so-called new wave reductionism fails to capture the nature of the interlevel relations between psychology and neuroscience. Bickle (1995, Psychoneural reduction of the genuinely cognitive: some accomplished facts, Philosophical Psychology, 8, 265-285; 1998, Psychoneural reduction: the new wave, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press) has claimed that a (bottom-up) reduction of the psychological concepts of learning and memory to the concepts of neuroscience has in fact already been accomplished. An investigation of current research on the phenomenon of long-term potentiation reveals that this claim overstates the facts. Both the psychological and the neural concepts involved have not yet stabilized and face further correction under the influence of both bottom-up and top-down selection pressures. In addition, psychological concepts often refer to functions, and functions are indispensable and irreducible. Function ascriptions pick out objective patterns involving historical factors and distal goals. This view of functions implies that psychological facts cannot be simply read off from the neurophysiological facts. Although psychological theorizing is constrained by neurophysiology (and vice versa), psychology remains distinct at least to some degree.
No Reference information available - sign in for access.
No Citation information available - sign in for access.
No Supplementary Data.
No Article Media
No Metrics

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 September 1999

More about this publication?
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect 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