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The Nature of Dynamical Explanation

Zednik, Carlos (2011) The Nature of Dynamical Explanation. Philosophy of Science, 78 (2). pp. 238-263.

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Abstract

The received view of dynamical explanation is that dynamical cognitive science seeks to provide covering-law explanations of cognitive phenomena. By analyzing three prominent examples of dynamicist research, I show that the received view is misleading: some dynamical explanations are mechanistic explanations and in this way resemble computational and connectionist explanations. Interestingly, these dynamical explanations invoke the mathematical framework of dynamical systems theory to describe mechanisms far more complex and distributed than
the ones typically considered by philosophers. Therefore, contemporary dynamicist research reveals the need for a more sophisticated account of mechanistic explanation.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Zednik, Carloszednik@ovgu.de
Keywords: dynamical systems theory, mechanistic explanation, extended mind, anti-representationalism, decomposition
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Complex Systems
Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science
General Issues > Explanation
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Depositing User: Dr. Carlos Zednik
Date Deposited: 24 Jun 2018 03:27
Last Modified: 24 Jun 2018 03:27
Item ID: 14782
Journal or Publication Title: Philosophy of Science
Publisher: Philosophy of Science Association
Official URL: https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/...
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Complex Systems
Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science
General Issues > Explanation
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Date: April 2011
Page Range: pp. 238-263
Volume: 78
Number: 2
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/14782

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