The Making of Human Concepts (Oxford Series in Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience)

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9780199549221: The Making of Human Concepts (Oxford Series in Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience)

Human adults appear different from other animals in their ability to form abstract mental representations that go beyond perceptual similarity. In short, they can conceptualize the world. This apparent uniqueness leads to an immediate puzzle: When and How does this abstract system come into being? To answer this question we need to explore the origins of adult concepts, both developmentally and phylogenetically; When does the developing child acquire the ability to use abstract concepts? ; does the transition occur around 2 years, with the onset of symbolic representation and language? Or, is it independent of the emergence of language? ; when in evolutionary history did an abstract representational system emerge? ; is there something unique about the human brain? How would a computational system operating on the basis of perceptual associations develop into a system operating on the basis of abstract relations? ; is this ability present in other species, but masked by their inability to verbalise abstractions? Perhaps the very notion of concepts is empty and should be done away with altogether. This book tackles the age-old puzzle of what might be unique about human concepts. Intuitively, we have a sense that our thoughts are somehow different from those of animals and young children such as infants. Yet, if true, this raises the question of where and how this uniqueness arises. What are the factors that have played out during the life course of the individual and over the evolution of humans that have contributed to the emergence of this apparently unique ability? This volume brings together a collection of world specialists who have grappled with these questions from different perspectives to try to resolve the issue. It includes contributions from leading psychologists, neuroscientists, child and infant specialists, and animal cognition specialists. Taken together, this story leads to the idea that there is no unique

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About the Author:


Denis Mareschal obtained his first degree from King's College Cambridge in Natural Science with a specialisation in physics and theoretical physics. He then went on to obtain a Masters in psychology from McGill University with a thesis on the computational modelling of cognitive development. Finally, he obtained a DPhil in Psychology from the University of Oxford for a thesis combining neural network modelling and the experimental testing of infant-object interactions. He took up an initial lecturing position at the University of Exeter (UK) in 1995 and moved to Birkbeck College University of London in 1998 where he has been ever since. He was awarded the Marr Prize in 1995 by the Cognitive Science Society (USA), the Young Investigator Award in 2000 by the International Society on Infant Studies (USA), and the Margaret Donaldson Prize in 2006 by the Developmental Section of the British Psychological Society. He was made professor in 2006.

Paul C. Quinn earned an ScB degree in Psychology with Honors and graduated Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Brown University in 1981. He also received a PhD in Psychology from Brown in 1986. Quinn taught previously at the University of Iowa (1986-88) and at Washington & Jefferson College (1988-2003) before moving to the University of Delaware as Professor of Psychology in 2003. Quinn has been named a Fellow by the American Psychological Association (2004) and Association for Psychological Science (2007). He is interested in understanding the developmental emergence of synthetic cognitive abilities with a particular focus on the mechanisms by which human infants group (1) elements to form perceptual wholes, (2) objects into category representations, and (3) relations among objects into concepts. Quinn's research has been supported by the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation, and has resulted in over 120 journal and book chapter publications.

Stephen E. G. Lea holds MA and PhD degrees from the University of Cambridge, and has worked at the University of Exeter since 1976, being promoted to full professor in 1990. His PhD work was on decision-making in rats, and he was an early contributor to the field of animal cognition, which was then just beginning to emerge. Within that field, he is well known for his work on concept learning in birds, but he has also published on a range of topics in behavioural ecology, on subjects ranging from laboratory studies of hoarding in hamsters to field studies of diving in cormorants. In addition he was one of the founders of the modern movement in economic psychology, and is well known for his work on the psychology of money and debt. He has long experience of voluntary work with children and young people, and is a local (lay) preacher for the Methodist Church

Review:


"This edited volume is an exceptional delight to read. It is a thoughtful and compelling collection of chapters from today's top scientists examining human categorization from a wide variety of theoretical and comparative perspectives. Individuals from any number of areas should find this diverse material extremely interesting and important in advancing their understanding of this fundamental and important aspect of cognition. Beyond selecting an outstanding group of authors, the editors have thoughtfully provided the scientific foundations for the chapters and, more importantly, included an integrative summary that brings the different perspectives included in this volume into a common interdisciplinary focus. In sum, this volume is an important advance and is highly recommended for all interested in the fundamental nature of human and non-human thought."--Professor Robert Cook, Avian Visual Cognition Lab, Department of Psychology, Tufts University


"To a large extent cognitive, developmental, and comparative psychologists have pursued the study of concepts independently, with little attempt at integration between these disciplines. In this important edited collection, contributions from the leading experts detail the phylogenetic and ontogenetic origins of human adult concepts and push towards a coherent overall perspective. The volume will be essential reading for students, academics, and researchers seeking a unitary perspective on the origin of human adult concepts." --Professor Mark H. Johnson, Director, Centre for Brain and Cognitive Development,University of London


"This book focuses on a provocative question: what, if anything, is unique about human concepts? The authors-leaders in cognitive, developmental, and comparative psychology- provide an important push towards integration of disparate perspectives. Although it is difficult enough to study any one of these areas, the combination of the different disciplines provides a different outlook on the possible influences of relations, language, culture, and evolution. This is a stimulating, accessible, edited volume that will help students and researchers to better understand the question and the possible answers."-- Professor Brian H. Ross, Department of Psychology, University of Illinois


"...this is a book well worth buying. The editors' introductory remarks, pointing out the main ideas of each chapter and its place in the entire discussion, give the book far greater coherence than the average edited volume. This should increase its instructional utility. Most of the individual chapters are of excellent quality. " --PsycCRITIQUES


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Editorial: Oxford University Press, United Kingdom (2010)
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Descripción Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2010. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Human adults appear different from other animals in their ability to form abstract mental representations that go beyond perceptual similarity. In short, they can conceptualize the world. This apparent uniqueness leads to an immediate puzzle: WHEN and HOW does this abstract system come into being? To answer this question we need to explore the origins of adult concepts, both developmentally and phylogenetically; When does the developing child acquire the ability to use abstract concepts? Does the transition occur around 2 years, with the onset of symbolic representation and language? Or, is it independent of the emergence of language? When in evolutionary history did an abstract representational system emerge? Is there something unique about the human brain? How would a computational system operating on the basis of perceptual associations develop into a system operating on the basis of abstract relations? Is this ability present in other species, but masked by their inability to verbalise abstractions? Perhaps the very notion of concepts is empty and should be done away with altogether. This book tackles the age-old puzzle of what might be unique about human concepts. Intuitively, we have a sense that our thoughts are somehow different from those of animals and young children such as infants. Yet, if true, this raises the question of where and how this uniqueness arises. What are the factors that have played out during the life course of the individual and over the evolution of humans that have contributed to the emergence of this apparently unique ability? This volume brings together a collection of world specialists who have grappled with these questions from different perspectives to try to resolve the issue. It includes contributions from leading psychologists, neuroscientists, child and infant specialists, and animal cognition specialists. Taken together, this story leads to the idea that there is no unique ingredient in the emergence of human concepts, but rather a powerful and potentially unique mix of biological abilities and personal and social history that has led to where the human mind now stands. A must-read for students and researchers in the cognitive sciences. Nº de ref. de la librería AOP9780199549221

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Denis Mareschal
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Descripción Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2010. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Human adults appear different from other animals in their ability to form abstract mental representations that go beyond perceptual similarity. In short, they can conceptualize the world. This apparent uniqueness leads to an immediate puzzle: WHEN and HOW does this abstract system come into being? To answer this question we need to explore the origins of adult concepts, both developmentally and phylogenetically; When does the developing child acquire the ability to use abstract concepts? Does the transition occur around 2 years, with the onset of symbolic representation and language? Or, is it independent of the emergence of language? When in evolutionary history did an abstract representational system emerge? Is there something unique about the human brain? How would a computational system operating on the basis of perceptual associations develop into a system operating on the basis of abstract relations? Is this ability present in other species, but masked by their inability to verbalise abstractions? Perhaps the very notion of concepts is empty and should be done away with altogether. This book tackles the age-old puzzle of what might be unique about human concepts. Intuitively, we have a sense that our thoughts are somehow different from those of animals and young children such as infants. Yet, if true, this raises the question of where and how this uniqueness arises. What are the factors that have played out during the life course of the individual and over the evolution of humans that have contributed to the emergence of this apparently unique ability? This volume brings together a collection of world specialists who have grappled with these questions from different perspectives to try to resolve the issue. It includes contributions from leading psychologists, neuroscientists, child and infant specialists, and animal cognition specialists. Taken together, this story leads to the idea that there is no unique ingredient in the emergence of human concepts, but rather a powerful and potentially unique mix of biological abilities and personal and social history that has led to where the human mind now stands. A must-read for students and researchers in the cognitive sciences. Nº de ref. de la librería AOP9780199549221

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Descripción Oxford Univ Pr, 2010. Paperback. Estado de conservación: Brand New. 1st edition. 344 pages. 9.00x6.25x1.00 inches. In Stock. Nº de ref. de la librería __0199549222

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Denis Mareschal (Editor), Paul C. Quinn (Editor), Stephen E. G. Lea (Editor)
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Descripción Oxford University Press. Paperback. Estado de conservación: new. BRAND NEW, The Making of Human Concepts, Denis Mareschal, Paul Quinn, Stephen E. G. Lea, Human adults appear different from other animals in their ability to form abstract mental representations that go beyond perceptual similarity. In short, they can conceptualize the world. This apparent uniqueness leads to an immediate puzzle: WHEN and HOW does this abstract system come into being? To answer this question we need to explore the origins of adult concepts, both developmentally and phylogenetically; When does the developing child acquire the ability to use abstract concepts? Does the transition occur around 2 years, with the onset of symbolic representation and language? Or, is it independent of the emergence of language? When in evolutionary history did an abstract representational system emerge? Is there something unique about the human brain? How would a computational system operating on the basis of perceptual associations develop into a system operating on the basis of abstract relations? Is this ability present in other species, but masked by their inability to verbalise abstractions? Perhaps the very notion of concepts is empty and should be done away with altogether. This book tackles the age-old puzzle of what might be unique about human concepts. Intuitively, we have a sense that our thoughts are somehow different from those of animals and young children such as infants. Yet, if true, this raises the question of where and how this uniqueness arises. What are the factors that have played out during the life course of the individual and over the evolution of humans that have contributed to the emergence of this apparently unique ability? This volume brings together a collection of world specialists who have grappled with these questions from different perspectives to try to resolve the issue. It includes contributions from leading psychologists, neuroscientists, child and infant specialists, and animal cognition specialists. Taken together, this story leads to the idea that there is no unique ingredient in the emergence of human concepts, but rather a powerful and potentially unique mix of biological abilities and personal and social history that has led to where the human mind now stands. A 'must-read' for students and researchers in the cognitive sciences. Nº de ref. de la librería B9780199549221

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