Minds and Machines

, Volume 20, Issue 1, pp 19–27 | Cite as

The Contribution of Domain Specificity in the Highly Modular Mind

  • Axel Arturo Barceló Aspeitia
  • Ángeles Eraña
  • Robert Stainton


Is there a notion of domain specificity which affords genuine insight in the context of the highly modular mind, i.e. a mind which has not only input modules, but also central ‘conceptual’ modules? Our answer to this question is no. The main argument is simple enough: we lay out some constraints that a theoretically useful notion of domain specificity, in the context of the highly modular mind, would need to meet. We then survey a host of accounts of what domain specificity is, based on the intuitive idea that a domain specific mechanism is restricted in the kind of information that it processes, and show that each fails at least one of those constraints.


Domain-specificity Cognitive modularity Central systems Information restrictions 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Axel Arturo Barceló Aspeitia
    • 1
  • Ángeles Eraña
    • 1
  • Robert Stainton
    • 2
  1. 1.Instituto de Investigaciones Filosóficas, Circuito Maestro Mario de la Cueva s/n, Ciudad de la Investigación en HumanidadesCiudad UniversitariaCoyoacánMexico, DF
  2. 2.Faculty of Arts and Humanities, UC112The University of Western OntarioLondonCanada

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