Intuitions without concepts lose the game: mindedness in the art of chess
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.Get Access
To gain insight into human nature philosophers often discuss the inferior performance that results from deficits such as blindsight or amnesia. Less often do they look at superior abilities. A notable exception is Herbert Dreyfus who has developed a theory of expertise according to which expert action generally proceeds automatically and unreflectively. We address one of Dreyfus’s primary examples of expertise: chess. At first glance, chess would seem an obvious counterexample to Dreyfus’s view since, clearly, chess experts are engaged in deep strategic thought. However, Dreyfus’s argument is subtle. He accepts that analysis and deliberation play a role in chess, yet he thinks that all such thought is predicated on intuitive, arational expert perception, and action. We argue that even the so-called “intuitive” aspect of chess is rational through and through.
- Adler, C. H. (2007). “Sports-related task-specific dystonia: The yips”, in: Stacy, M.A. Handbook of Dystonia. New York: Informa Healthcare.
- Baddeley, A. D., & Hitch, G. J. L. (1974). Working Memory. In G. A. Bower (Ed.), The psychology of learning and motivation: advances in research and theory (Vol. 8, pp. 47–89). New York: Academic Press.
- Beilock, S. (2010). Choke: what the secrets of the brain reveal about getting it right when you have to. New York: Simon and Shuster.
- Beilock, S. L., & Gray, R. (2007). Why do athletes “choke” under pressure. In G. Tenenbaum & R. C. Eklund (Eds.), Handbook of sport psychology (3rd ed., pp. 425–444). Hoboken: Wiley.
- Beilock, S., Carr, Beilock, S. L., & Carr, T. H. (2001). On the fragility of skilled performance: What governs choking under pressure? Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 130, 701–725. CrossRef
- Binet, A. (1966/1893) Mnemonic Virtuosity: A Study of Chess Players. Genet Psychol Monogr, 74(1), 127–62.
- Chabris, C. F., & Hearst, E. S. (2003). Visualization, pattern recognition, and forward search: effects of playing speed and sight of the position on Grandmaster Chess Errors. Cognitive Science, 27, 637–648. CrossRef
- Charness, N. (1981). Search in chess: age and skill differences. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 7(2), 467–476. CrossRef
- Chase, W., & Simon, H. (1973). The mind's eye in chess. In W. Chase (Ed.), Visual Information Processing (pp. 215–281). New York: Academic.
- de Groot, A. (1978). Thought and choice in chess. Cambridge: University Press.
- de Groot, A., & Gobet, F. (1996). Perception and memory in chess: studies in the heuristics of the professional eye. Assen: Van Gorcum.
- DeCaro, M.S., & Beilock, S.L. (2010). The benefits and perils of attentional control. In M. Csikszentmihalyi and B. Bruya (Eds.). Effortless Attention: A New Perspective in the Cognitive Science of Attention and Action. MIT Press
- Dreyfus, H. L. (2005). Overcoming the myth of the mental: how philosophers can profit from the phenomenology of everyday expertise. Proceedings and Addresses of the American Philosophical Association, 79, 47–63.
- Dreyfus, H. L. (2007a). The return of myth of the mental. Inquiry, 50(4), 352–365. CrossRef
- Dreyfus, H. L. (2007b). Response to McDowell. Inquiry, 50(4), 371–377. CrossRef
- Dreyfus, H. L., & Dreyfus, S. E. (1986). Mind over machine: the power of intuition and expertise in the era of the computer. New York: The Free.
- Dreyfus, H. L., & Dreyfus, S. E. (2004). The ethical implications of the five-stage skill-acquisition model. Bulletin of Science, Technology & Society, 24, 251–264. CrossRef
- Gobet, F., & Simon, H. A. (1996). The roles of recognition processes and look-ahead search in time-constrained expert problem solving: evidence from grand-master-level chess. Psychological Science, 7, 52–55. CrossRef
- Hartmann (2008), “Gary Kasparov Is a Cyborg; or What ChessBase Teaches Us About Technology,” in Hale, B. (ed), Philosophy Looks at Chess, (Open Court).
- Holding, D. H., & Reynolds, R. I. (1982). Recall or evaluation of chess positions as Determinants of Chess Skill. Memory & Cognition, 10, 237–242. CrossRef
- Jackson, R., & Beilock, S. L. (2008), “Attention and performance,”in D. Farrow, J. Baker, and C. MacMahon (Eds.), Developing elite sports performers: Lessons from theory and practice, (pp.104–118) (Routledge).
- James, W. (1892/2001), Psychology, the Briefer Course, (Toronto: Dover).
- Lassiter, G. D. (2000). The relative contributions of recognition and search-evaluation processes to high-level chess performance: comment on Gobet and Simon. Psychological Science, 11, 172–173. CrossRef
- McDowell, J. (1994). Mind and world. Cambridge: Cambridge Harvard University Press.
- McDowell, J. (2007a). What myth? Inquiry, 50(4), 338–351. CrossRef
- McDowell, J. (2007b). Response to Dreyfus. Inquiry, 50(4), 366–370. CrossRef
- Montero, B. (2010). Does bodily awareness interfere with highly skilled movement? Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy, 53(2), 105–122.
- Montero, B. (forthcoming). A Dancer Reflects. In J. Schear (Ed.), Mind, Reason and Beingin-the-World: The McDowell-Dreyfus Debate (Routledge, forthcoming 2011).
- Rachels, S. (2008), “The Reviled Art,” in Hale, B. (ed), Philosophy Looks at Chess, (Open Court).
- Rietveld, E. (2010). McDowell and Dreyfus on Unreflective Action. Inquiry, 53(2), 183–207. CrossRef
- Saariluoma, P. (1990). Appreciation and Restructuring in Chess Player's Problem Solving. In K. J. Gilhooly, M. T. G. Keane, R. H. Lgie, & G. Erdos (Eds.), Lines of Thinking, vol. 2. London: Wiley.
- Saariluoma, P., & Kalakoski, V. (1998). Skilled imagery and long-term working memory. The American Journal of Psychology, 110, 177–201. CrossRef
- Van Harreveld, F., Wagenmakers, E., & van der Mass, H. L. J. (2007). The effects of time pressure on chess skill: an investigation to fast and slow processes underlying expert performance. Psychological Research, 71, 591–597. CrossRef
- Wilson, T., & Schooler, J. (1991). Thinking too much: introspection can reduce the quality of preferences and decisions. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 60(2), 181–192. CrossRef
- Intuitions without concepts lose the game: mindedness in the art of chess
Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences
Volume 10, Issue 2 , pp 175-194
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Springer Netherlands
- Additional Links
- Herbert Dreyfus
- John McDowell