Bryce Huebner: Macrocognition: A Theory of Distributed Minds and Collective Intentionality
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Bryce Huebner’s Macrocognition is a book with a double mission. The first and main mission is “to show that there are cases of collective mentality in our world” (p. 5). Cases of collective mentality are cases where groups, teams, mobs, firms, colonies or some other collectivities possess cognitive capacities or mental states in the same sense that we individually do. To accomplish this mission, Huebner develops an account of macrocognition, where “the term ‘macrocognition’ is intended as shorthand for the claim that system-level cognition is implemented by an integrated network of specialized computational mechanisms” (p. 5).
The second mission of Huebner’s book is to elaborate an account of cognitive architecture that could set the groundwork for identifying under what conditions groups, and individuals indeed, are fruitfully and justifiably said to be minded. To this end, Huebner tackles several foundational issues in cognitive science, including traditional philosophical questions...