Publication 6621

Hutto D. D. & Satne G. (2017) Continuity skepticism in doubt: A radically enactive take. In: Durt C., Fuchs T. & Tewes C. (eds.) Embodiment, enaction, and culture: Investigating the constitution of the shared world. MIT Press, Cambridge MA: 107–127. Fulltext at https://cepa.info/6621
Excerpt: This chapter responds to several accusations that a REC-inspired program for explaining the natural origins of content – the NOC program, for short – is doomed to fail. Section 1 responds to a preliminary general concern that the NOC program is internally incoherent when seen in light of the Hard Problem of Content: a problem identified by RECers themselves. Section 2 considers a different, more softly pitched complaint against the NOC program – namely, that in drawing a sharp distinction between basic, contentless, and content-involving kinds of cognition, REC gives succor to continuity skepticism, the specific complaint being that REC is at odds with evolutionary continuity. Section 3 casts doubt on the idea that REC motivates this kind of continuity skepticism by offering a sketch of how the natural origins of content could be explained in a gapless, REC-friendly way that does not violate evolutionary continuity. Finally, Section 4 considers how REC fares against a different, philosophically motivated variety of continuity skepticism. Although we conclude that REC cannot quell the skeptical worries that a philosophically based continuity skepticism generates, we argue that REC’s representationalist rivals fare no better against this brand of skepticism. Thus, in the final analysis, we have good reasons to doubt that a REC-inspired NOC program promotes or is particularly prone to skepticism about continuity.

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