TOWARDS A PRAGMATIST AND INTERACTIVE PARADIGM OF STUDYING INTERSUBJECTIVITY

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Transliteration of original Title: 
K pragmaticheskoy i interaktivnoy paradigme issledovaniya intersubyektivnosti
Author(s): 
Fedor Stanzhevskiy
Saint Petersburg State Technological Institute
Issue number: 
No. 2 (Vol. 44)
Pages: 
87-101
Abstract: 

Modern cognitive sciences are dominated by the individualist paradigm of studying intersubjectivity. According to this paradigm, the individual mind precedes intersubjective interrelationships. The individual is a fully constituted participant of interaction. Interaction itself is nothing more than a sum of internal models in the minds and brains of the participants and as such it has no autonomy in itself. Consciousness reflects “inside” the outward objective reality. The representative theory of mind is one of the foundations of internalism and individualism about mind. In case of perception, a representation is construed as an internal mental state which represents the outward world. In case of action, a representation is an internal mental state that causally precedes outward behavior. These ideas imply a split between the individual mind and the world; a similar split exists between the interacting minds.

The article postulates the necessity to develop a truly interactive model of intersubjectivity. Such a model implies that interaction has reality of its own apart from internal models “in the heads” of its participants. This model would imply that individual minds are results of interaction no less than they are prerequisites for it. Based on data from developmental psychology, the author argues that individual minds are constituted in intersubjective interaction. The first stage of this interaction is dyadic interrelation whereby an infant and her mother constitute one dynamical system. The second stage is the so called joint attention, which engenders the triangulation of self-consciousness, other-consciousness and objectivity. Then some experimental neurobiological data are presented. These data have been obtained in an attempt to provide an ecological approximation to real interactions. These data were obtained and interpreted from a non-individualistic standpoint, which shows that the internalist model of consciousness is not the only one to serve as an experimental and theoretical paradigm in studying intersubjectivity.

Keywords: 
intersubjectivity, interaction, representational theory of mind, internalism, joint attention, affordance, attribution of mental states, observation, participation
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DOI: 
10.5840/eps201544210
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