Publication 6117

Nielsen K. & Ward T. (2018) Towards a new conceptual framework for psychopathology: Embodiment, enactivism, and embedment. Theory & Psychology 28(6): 800–822.
Psychopathology classification is at a conceptual crossroads. It is becoming increasingly accepted that the flaws of the DSM relate to its struggles to pick out “real” entities as opposed to clusters of symptoms. The Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) was formulated in response to this failure, and attempts to address the concerns confronting the DSM by shifting to a causal and continuous model of psychopathology. Noting key criticisms of neurocentricism and problems with conceptual validity leveled at the RDoC, we argue that they stem from its grounding in the metaphysical position of eliminative materialism, or at least material-reductionism. We propose that 3e cognition (viewing the mind as embodied, embedded, and enactive) offers a superior alternative to eliminative materialism. A 3e-informed framework of mental disorder is sketched out and its advantages as a basis for classifying and conceptualizing mental disorders are considered.
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