Decomposing the Mind-Brain: A Long-Term Pursuit
Bechtel (William)
Source: Brain and Mind 3: 229–242, 2002
Paper - Abstract

Paper Summary

Author’s Abstract

  1. This paper defends cognitive neuroscience’s project of developing mechanistic explanations of cognitive processes through decomposition and localization against objections raised by William Uttal in The New Phrenology.
  2. The key issue between Uttal and researchers pursuing cognitive neuroscience is that Uttal bets against the possibility of decomposing mental operations into component elementary operations which are localized in distinct brain regions.
  3. The paper argues that it is through advancing and revising what are likely to be overly simplistic and incorrect decompositions that the goals of cognitive neuroscience are likely to be achieved.


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