Functionalism Paper

Topics: Philosophy of mind, Mind, Psychology Pages: 4 (1325 words) Published: March 5, 2013
Is your Iphone part of your cognitive system?

This paper will clearly and concisely presents Paul Churchland’s functionalist account of mind. Next I will discuss Clark, Andy and David Chalmers’s the extended mind. After that, I will show the different opinion on the objection of the problem of lualia on functionalism. Finally I will give some reasons why I think the human mind extends into the world is not conceivable.

The structure of this paper is as follows. First, I will describe Paul Churchland’s functionalism theory from two aspects. One aspect is that functionalism claims that mental states depend not on its internal constitution, but on its functional role in the cognitive system. Another aspect is that functionalism defines the features of a mental state and process. After that, I will explain the extended mind from Clark, Andy and David Chalmers and I will show the extended mind argument. Then I will display how functionalism leads to the extended mind theory by explaining the relationship between them and how functionalism is a necessary part of the extended mind argument. Then the paper will describe the most commonly posted objections on functionalism. Finally, I will give some reasons why I hold the view that the extended mind is not possible.

Functionalism is the theory that what makes something sensations, fears, beliefs and other types of mental states depends not on its internal constitution, but on its functional role in the cognitive system. According to the theory, what is important for mentality is not the matter of which the creature is made, but the structure of the internal activities which that matter sustains (Churchland 1984: 296-297). Thus all other creatures with internal states functionally isomorphic with our own internal economy then are capable of feeling fear identically to a human fear state from a purely functional point of view.

Functionalism theory is claimed that the defining feature of a mental...
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