How Does the Mind Work? Insights from Biology

Gary Marcus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Cognitive scientists must understand not just what the mind does, but how it does what it does. In this paper, I consider four aspects of cognitive architecture: how the mind develops, the extent to which it is or is not modular, the extent to which it is or is not optimal, and the extent to which it should or should not be considered a symbol-manipulating device (as opposed to, say, an eliminative connectionist network). In each case, I argue that insights from developmental and evolutionary biology can lead to substantive and important compromises in historically vexed debates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)145-172
Number of pages28
JournalTopics in Cognitive Science
Volume1
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2009

Keywords

  • Cognition
  • Cognitive architecture
  • Cognitive development
  • Connectionism
  • Domain-specificity
  • Evolutionary psychology
  • Innate
  • Language
  • Learning
  • Linguistics
  • Optimality
  • Symbol manipulation
  • Syntactic representation
  • Syntactic trees

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Artificial Intelligence

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