Extended cognition and the space of social interaction

Consciousness and Cognition
Joel Krueger

Abstract

The extended mind thesis (EM) asserts that some cognitive processes are (partially) composed of actions consisting of the manipulation and exploitation of environmental structures. Might some processes at the root of social cognition have a similarly extended structure? In this paper, I argue that social cognition is fundamentally an interactive form of space management--the negotiation and management of "we-space"--and that some of the expressive actions involved in the negotiation and management of we-space (gesture, touch, facial and whole-body expressions) drive basic processes of interpersonal understanding and thus do genuine social-cognitive work. Social interaction is a kind of extended social cognition, driven and at least partially constituted by environmental (non-neural) scaffolding. Challenging the Theory of Mind paradigm, I draw upon research from gesture studies, developmental psychology, and work on Moebius Syndrome to support this thesis.

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Citations

Mar 26, 2016·Frontiers in Psychology·Michelle Maiese
May 26, 2015·Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. Cognitive Science·Marco Bernini, Angela Woods
Oct 25, 2016·Frontiers in Psychology·Stephen M Fiore, Travis J Wiltshire
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Jan 15, 2014·Medicine, Health Care, and Philosophy·Jan Slaby
Aug 9, 2018·Frontiers in Psychology·Laura Bishop
Jun 16, 2021·Scientific Reports·Andrea SchiavioRenee Timmers

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