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Experiential Blindness & Embodied Cognition, wiki rewrite #7


Lisa Feldman Barrett might be my new favorite person to learn from. She is a neuroscientist and psychology professor at Northwestern University, with about a thousand other impressive titles. She drops pearls from her every breath. I wish she were my mentor, boss, mother, aunt, grandmother, sister, and best friend. She has taught me concepts like experiential blindness and embodied cognition.


Lisa (it's like we're friends already) gave a great TED talk about embodied cognition and experiential blindness. I recommend it.

Experiential blindness is how we interpret our reality. Humans "see" or "understand" their reality based on prior associations. We have a difficult time seeing or knowing outside of pre-existing analogies. This explains why two people witnessing an event can have two different stories of the event (can I get a Roshomon Effect what what). Their brain and eyes (vision being the most powerful and important collector of information for human cognition) laser in on what they already "understand" or what is more memorably important to them.


Our brains and bodies have to work hard to make new associations if we want to know our environment differently. What does Lisa recommend we do? First, breathe.

Here's my wiki edit for embodied cognition (no wiki entry for experiential blindness):


Embodied cognition is the theory that cognition, or understanding, comes from the entire organism's inner and outer-body experiences. This means understanding comes from all aspects of the body: the motor system, the perceptual system, bodily interactions in its environment (situatedness), and prior associations of the body in its mind. Understanding includes mental models (like concepts and categories), and how the body performs cognitive tasks (like reasoning or judgment).

Embodied cognition is related to the extended mind thesis, situated cognition, and enactivism. The modern version depends on insights drawn from recent research in psychology, linguistics, cognitive science, dynamical systems, artificial intelligence, robotics, animal cognition, plant cognition and neurobiology.


This theory challenges other theories like cognitivism, computationalism, and Cartesian dualism.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Embodied_cognition

Original text:


Embodied cognition is the theory that many features of cognition, whether human or otherwise, are shaped by aspects of the entire body of the organism. The features of cognition include high level mental constructs (such as concepts and categories) and performance on various cognitive tasks (such as reasoning or judgment). The aspects of the body include the motor system, the perceptual system, bodily interactions with the environment (situatedness), and the assumptions about the world that are built into the structure of the organism.

The embodied mind thesis challenges other theories, such as cognitivism, computationalism, and Cartesian dualism.

It is closely related to the extended mind thesis, situated cognition, and enactivism. The modern version depends on insights drawn from recent research in psychology, linguistics, cognitive science, dynamical systems, artificial intelligence, robotics, animal cognition, plant cognition and neurobiology.

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