Contentless Minds! Defending the Very Idea

  • 07 Dec 2012
  • 2:30 PM
  • Deakin Prime Level 3, 550 Bourke St, Melbourne
The Centre for Citizenship and Globalization, Deakin University proudly presents:

Professor Daniel D. Hutto (University of Hertfordshire)
Contentless Minds! Defending the Very Idea

The cognitive revolution deposed behaviourist thinking (in both philosophy and psychology) and licensed a return to active theorizing about the properties of mental states and their place in nature. Promoting representational and computational theories of mind, many researchers have assumed that the contentful properties of mental states get manipulated in computational processes, enabling intelligent activity. But to date no tenable naturalised theory of content has emerged. Moreover, newly articulated non-representationalist approaches in the philosophy of mind and cognitive science - enactive, embodied approaches - are growing in popularity. Against this backdrop, I give reasons for thinking that radically embodied/enactive accounts of cognition are both conceptually coherent and preferable for understanding basic minds than their rivals, which buy into the traditional assumptions of classical cognitive science. Using what I call 'The Hard Problem of Content' as a foil I argue for a fundamental shift in how we conceive of the nature of basic minds.

Updated information will be posted at:

All are welcome to attend; RSVPs appreciated: patrick.stokes AT

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