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Embodied cognition and circular causality: on the role of constitutive autonomy in the reciprocal coupling of perception and action
University of Skovde, Sweden.
University of Skovde, Sweden; University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
University of Skovde, Sweden.
Linköping University, Department of Computer and Information Science, Human-Centered systems. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering. University of Skovde, Sweden.
2015 (English)In: Frontiers in Psychology, ISSN 1664-1078, E-ISSN 1664-1078, Vol. 6, no 1660Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The reciprocal coupling of perception and action in cognitive agents has been firmly established: perceptions guide action but so too do actions influence what is perceived. While much has been said on the implications of this for the agents external behavior, less attention has been paid to what it means for the internal bodily mechanisms which underpin cognitive behavior. In this article, we wish to redress this by reasserting that the relationship between cognition, perception, and action involves a constitutive element as well as a behavioral element, emphasizing that the reciprocal link between perception and action in cognition merits a renewed focus on the system dynamics inherent in constitutive biological autonomy. Our argument centers on the idea that cognition, perception, and action are all dependent on processes focussed primarily on the maintenance of the agents autonomy. These processes have an inherently circular nature self-organizing, self producing, and self-maintaining and our goal is to explore these processes and suggest how they can explain the reciprocity of perception and action. Specifically, we argue that the reciprocal coupling is founded primarily on their endogenous roles in the constitutive autonomy of the agent and an associated circular causality of global and local processes of self regulation, rather than being a mutual sensory-motor contingency that derives from exogenous behavior. Furthermore, the coupling occurs first and foremost via the internal milieu realized by the agents organismic embodiment. Finally, we consider how homeostasis and the related concept of allostasis contribute to this circular self regulation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
FRONTIERS MEDIA SA , 2015. Vol. 6, no 1660
Keyword [en]
embodied cognition; autonomy; agency; circular causality; homeostasis; allostasis
National Category
Computer and Information Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-123153DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01660ISI: 000364347900001PubMedID: 26579043OAI: diva2:877597

Funding Agencies|Knowledge Foundation, Stockholm, under SIDUS [20140220]

Available from: 2015-12-07 Created: 2015-12-04 Last updated: 2016-01-14

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