Living & speaking, Haye 2008 (p)

Living & speaking, Haye 2008 (p) - Living being and...

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Living being and speaking being: Toward a dialogical approach to intentionality Andrés A. Haye Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile Abstract One of the main goals of cognitive science is to shed light on human knowledge. This paper states that, if daily conversations, literature, and private thought, are proper expressions of human behavior, then cognitive sciences ought to elaborate a concept of knowledge suited to this kind of activities. I draw upon the notion of discourse in Bakhtin to specify the attributes of knowing needed to account for human behavior, whose manifestations in everyday life are not reduced to representing objects but essentially oriented toward responding to others. As a central aspect of knowledge, I focus on intentionality and offer a discussion about different aspects of it. Specifically, I examine the difference between intentionality as the faculty of representation (aboutness) and intentionality as the subjective positioning toward contextually relevant ideological perspectives (meaning). Key words: intentionality, dialogicality, discourse, meaning, aboutness Note I am grateful to Antonia Larraín, Ivana Marková, Per Linell, Michèle Grossen, Selma Leitão, and Diego Cosmelli for their useful comments on a previous version of this paper. Address correspondence to Andrés Haye, Escuela de Psicología, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Vicuña Mackenna 4860, Macul, Santiago, Chile. E-mail address: [email protected] . The original publication is available at .
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Introduction One goal of cognitive science, if not its core aim, is to shed light on human knowledge. Theories in cognitive science are usually oriented by the concept of knowledge as that which supposedly mediates the bond of organisms with their biological milieu , including symbolic exchange among them. Knowing is, accordingly, meant as a common ground for both life and language (a broad idea postulated by many authors and from different angles, for instance Cole, 2002; and Maturana & Varela, 1980). However, problems of dualism often stand in the way of trying to put these two aspects of human cognition together. Some of these problems arise because of a representational concept of knowledge (as criticized, e.g., by Bechtell, 1998, and Churchland, 1986), others because of the abstract opposition, still pervasive in theorization, between the biological and the cultural (as questioned, e.g., by Greenfield, 2002, and Tomasello, 1999). Disclosing the dualist assumptions of traditional cognitivism and developing a monist approach, has been a dominant attitude in cognitive sciences during the last two decades. Thus, the living being and the speaking being are conceived of as two aspects of one and the same fundamental mode of being of humans, that of being cognitive. In this paper I will argue that this monist tendency may overlook some aspects of human knowing. Aristotle, in the treatise
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This note was uploaded on 03/06/2011 for the course PSYCH 212 taught by Professor Dansullivan during the Spring '11 term at NYU.

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Living & speaking, Haye 2008 (p) - Living being and...

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