Author: Peter Carruthers
Date Released: 2006
Page Count: 481
Isbn10 Code: 0199207089
Isbn13 Code: 9780199207084
Review No one will read The Architecture of the Mind without being informed, stimulated, challenged and inspired. It is essential reading. Keith Frankish, The Philosophical Quarterly There is much to admire about this book. Peter Carruthers is a cognitive scientist as well as a philosopher of mind. he has wide knowledge of cognitive psychology (human and animal) and neuroscience, as well as his own subject. He has persuaded us to take seriously two hypotheses that we have previously had little time for - massive modularity and "global broadcasting"...a most stimulating and informative discussion of the mind...this work is a heroic effort, and brave in the way it addresses so many of the relevant literatures and confronts many objections that might be made to its argument. Whether of not we fully agree with Carruthers' architecture of the mind, this is vastly stimulating and important contribution that is well worthy of careful study by all those engaged in cognitive science. Jonathan Evans and David Over, Thinking and Reasoning brings together diverse empirical results and theoretical explanations connecting them coherently into a powerful and rigorous narrative that provides an entry point into some of the burning and unresolved questions in the cognitive sciences. The book succeeds in its versatile interdisciplinary defence of the modularity thesis, painting "the big picture" underlying the scattered details. Carruthers once again proves the remarkable ability of philosophers to traverse smoothly through disciplinary boundaries. Pritha Chandra, Mind and Machines Carruthers' numerous arguments seem to me sound, well worked-out and higly acceptable. In addition, the book is written in an engaging and clear style. Josko Zanic, Synthesis Philosophica For over a decade, the massive modularity hypothesis has been center-stage in debates about cognitive architecture and evolutionary psychology. In this bold, wide-ranging and ambitious book, Carruthers sets out and defends what is, by far, the clearest and most plausible version of the massive modularity hypothesis to be found in the literature. He also explores the often surprising implications of his version of massive modularity for a wide range of issues including creativity, consciousness, norms and scientific reasoning. This is the best sort of interdisciplinary research - innovative, broadly informed, and crystal clear. It's essential reading for anyone interested in how the human mind works and how it evolved. Stephen Stich, Rutgers University Carruthers's book - ostensibly a defence of "massive modularity" - provides what is surely the richest and most complete picture of the mind to date, laying out the structure of human and animal minds with unparalleled empirical richness and philosophical rigour. It is one of the most important books in the philosophy of mind in decades. A truly monumental achievement. Stephen Laurence, University of Sheffield A magnificent defence of the massive modularity thesis, showing how this view of the mind - and only this view - is compatible with both our understanding of human evolution and of human creativity. Steven Mithen FBA, Professor of Early Prehistory, University of Reading The Architecture of the Mind is as brave as it is massive. At time a when most mainstream cognitive psychologists have dismissed the possibility that the mind might be importantly modular, Carruthers has launched a valiant, state-of-the-art defense, touching on insights from biology, animal behavior, and experimental psychology. If you care about the modularity hypothesis - and every cognitive scientist should - you owe it to yourself to read this book. Gary Marcus, New York University and Director of the NYU Infant Language Learning Center It is a sweeping synthesis, covering a vast range of material, while arguing persuasively for an architecture of the mind (and brain!) that is more all encompassing but somewhat weaker than Fodorian modularity. For anyone interested in the current status of the modularity hypothesis, this is a must-read. Randy Gallistel, Prof of Psychology and Cognitive Sciences, Rutgers University About the Author Peter Carruthers is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Maryland.
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