The Social Epistemology of Human Extension – Presentation

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Conference: Future Fundamentals of Social Epistemology

Session Title: Humanity 2.0 and the Extended Humanities

Co-moderated by Gregory Sandstrom and David Budtz Pedersen

Venue: Virginia Tech University, Blacksburg, Virginia, USA

Date: July 30, 2014

Video Presentation Dr. Gregory Sandstrom – “The Social Epistemology of Human Extension”

 

Session Abstract:

Extended cognition is the hypothesis that the reach of the mind need not end at the boundaries of the human body. Tools, instrument, technologies and other physical and social infrastructures can under certain conditions count as parts of human cognitive activity. The separation of mind, body, and environment has been imperative throughout the philosophical tradition. Yet, external objects play a significant role in facilitating cognitive processes. Directions written down in a notebook or on a digital device can serve the function of memory. In the not so distant future, one may imagine a biological being that retains information in non-neural ways (e.g. prosthetics to support memory). In this way, cognition is extended into the world through different media. Continue reading ‘The Social Epistemology of Human Extension – Presentation’

Sourcebook for Seminar on Intelligent Design in the Social Sciences and Humanities

Sourcebook for Seminar on Intelligent Design in the Social Sciences and Humanities

Summer 2008

Discovery Institute

Seattle, Washington

 2014-09-01 17.15.54

Contents of Sourcebook

Continue reading ‘Sourcebook for Seminar on Intelligent Design in the Social Sciences and Humanities’

Human Extension – Book Publication

It’s with great pleasure to announce the publication of my first book – Human Extension: An Alternative to Evolutionism, Creationism and Intelligent Design. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014.

9781137464880.indd

Though the book was published on 05 August, 2014, only now, after a time- and focus-consuming teaching engagement in the USA, do I have the opportunity to announce and promote the text.

The introductory book critiques the Intelligent Design Movement and its ideology, in addition to documenting the exaggeration of ‘evolution’ as a biological theory into the ideology of ‘evolutionism’. The ideology of ‘creationism’ is given rather short thrift as an unfortunate ideology linked with fundamentalism and biblical literalism in the USA that does not, however, discount theistic views of Creation across a range of beliefs. Of main interest is the idea of Human Extension and how it impacts the current landscape of views involving origins and processes of change-over-time.

Thanks are expressed to the editors at NewGen and to the management at Palgrave Macmillan for their patient and consistent work on bringing this text to print in the Pivot Series.

http://www.palgrave.com/page/detail/human-extension-an-alternative-to-evolutionism-creationism-and-intelligent-design-gregory-sandstrom/?K=9781137464880

http://books.google.lt/books?id=2eRABAAAQBAJ&dq=sandstrom+%22Human+Extension%22&source=gbs_navlinks_s

Human Satellites and Creative Extension – SERRC

This was a risky short paper in response to a provocative article by Russian philosopher Lyudmila A. Markova at the Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective. The initial paper left out the ‘many worlds’ perspective, i.e. that human beings may perceive ourselves as living in a ‘human multiverse.’ I thought it would be helpful to add it as a brainstorming possibility. Quite openly, I ask for feedback from anyone with thoughts about it: “Do the satellites extend (as technologies, media, cognition) from human beings or are we all self-sustainable ‘worlds’ around which our satellites fly in a greater social epistemological multiverse?”

This is an on-going discussion related to extended mind and human extension, soon with a visit to the extended knowledge project.

http://social-epistemology.com/2014/02/23/human-satellites-and-creative-extension-gregory-sandstrom/

Continue reading ‘Human Satellites and Creative Extension – SERRC’

Extending Knowledge and the Extended Mind – SERRC

This post duplicates a précis and audio interview published at the Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective.

Audio available here: http://social-epistemology.com/2014/01/20/extending-knowledge-and-the-extended-mind-gregory-sandstrom/

This Echo Chamber [1] interview with Professors Georg Theiner and Orestis Palermos was conducted by SERRC member Gregory Sandstrom in Torún, Poland at the Avant – Trends in Interdisciplinary Studies conference on 9 November 2013.

The interview focuses on the Extended Mind Thesis (EMT [2]), that was featured in no less than six presentations at the conference. It starts by hearing about the historical contact by Theiner and Palermos with the EMT of Andy Clark and David Chalmers. The main topics of the interview are cognitive science, psychology, philosophy of mind, science and technology studies, epistemology and the relevance of the EMT in interdisciplinary collaboration.

Theiner mentions that he had some hesitations at first to the EMT, which he learned about in a presentation by Andy Clark. At the end of the talk, Clark brought up René Descartes’ view of trying to empower the human mind by ‘shrinking’ it into something immaterial; “to save it from materiality” instead of allowing it to be ‘extended.’ Yet Theiner believes that instead of shrinking our minds down to just the material level, it is rather the extension of our minds and cognition into the world, into the physical, social and cultural environment that makes human beings special.

Peace for Evolution’s Puzzle: The Arrival of Human Extension

Abstract:

A response to the review “Evolution is Still Puzzling” (2008) of “Pieces of Evolution’s Puzzle” (2008) that makes an attempt to answer the challenge of a lack of alternative to evolutionary theories in human-social sciences. By putting forward a candidate for a legitimate alternative to evolution, the evolutionary puzzle and its exaggeration from biology into improper humanities fields is potentially solved. This paper offers a paradigm shift primarily for sociology, the author’s home field, but also for four other fields that have been neutralized from providing peaceful alternatives in the study of change and development for human societies, instead of succumbing to the totalising logic of evolutionistic ideology. Human extension marks a moment of reversal from evolutionism with its arrival as a post-evolutionary general methodology.

General Introduction

Extension – “a fundamental notion concerning the nature of reality[i].” – A.N. Whitehead

The only way to achieve peace in the warring controversy over evolution is to put evolutionary theory in its proper scholarly place, refusing to allow it to be over-estimated in the Academy. The same was true with relativity theory in physics; it has only a limited conceptual transferability into human-social thought, philosophy and ethics. In making a principled categorical clarification about ‘evolutionism,’ those who choose to uphold evolution as a world-view, as the primary basis for their special sciences, philosophies, or (a)theologies, can be identified for their attempt to ‘universalise evolution,’ rather than limiting it within appropriate and responsible, meaningful boundaries.

Continue reading ‘Peace for Evolution’s Puzzle: The Arrival of Human Extension’

Pieces of Evolution’s Puzzle: A Social-Philosophical Perspective

Abstract. This paper tries to show that evolution is an outdated theory in human-social sciences; it has been applied in the past and is now set to become obsolete. This is because human agency, free-will, decision-making and intentionality are predominantly excluded from social-humanitarian evolutionary discourse, which leads to a dehumanizing effect (Fuller 2006). An updated, non-evolutionary (cf. post-evolutionary) view of human-social change(s) that suits the information-electronic age and ushers in a teleological perspective would offer a timely solution to this problem.

Аннотация. Эта статья пробует показать что эволюция – устаревшая теория в людской-социальных науках; она прикладной в прошлом и теперь установлена к морально стареть. Это потому что людские агентство, свободная воля, принятие решений и преднамеренность большей частью исключены от социальн-гуманитарной эволюционный речи, которая водит к дегуманизирование влиянию (Фулльр 2006). Обновленный, не-эволюционный (cf. пост-эволюционный) взгляд людской-социального изменения которое одевает информаци-электронное эпоха и швейцары в телеологический перспективе предложил бы своевременное разрешение к этой проблеме.

  

Introduction:

“The views you have acquired about Darwinism, evolution, and the struggle for existence won’t explain to you the meaning of your life and won’t give you guidance in your actions, and a life without an explanation of its meaning and importance, and without the unfailing guidance that stems from it is a pitiful existence. Think about it. I say it, probably on the eve of my death, because I love you[i].” – Lev N. Tolstoy

As a foreigner coming to the Russian Federation to do academic research, I was encouraged to find the best connection possible between ideas grown at home in Canada and those born in Russia. For me, one of the main reasons to study the Russian tradition was due to its perspectives regarding one of the most inter-disciplinary[ii][iii] concepts in today’s Academy, that of ‘evolution[iv].’ Russia’s unique historical perspective on evolution and evolutionary theories[v] affords the non-Russian observer a treasure trove of ideas. Some of these ideas are suitable for counter-balancing the extreme positions that have taken hold as controversy over evolution erupts in universities, academies and in the public arena around the world.

Continue reading ‘Pieces of Evolution’s Puzzle: A Social-Philosophical Perspective’


Contact the Author

E-mail: gregorisandstrom@yahoo.com

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