How does meaning come about, given the nature of our brains? Taking up this question, the book unites two so far disjoint perspectives on how humans represent and process information: In philosophy, linguistics, and large parts of psychology informational processes are commonly regarded as transformations over semantically composed structures of concepts. Mental concepts are regarded as the ultimate bearers of intentional content and the providers of linguistic meaning. In neuroscience, in contrast, the interactions of neurons – forming an apparently very different structure – are viewed as fundamental for the flow of information. 'The Compositional Brain' makes a provoking claim that, nevertheless, is underpinned with cogent argumentation. It proposes a structural identity theory that identifies the mechanisms of concept composition with patterns of synchronous neural activity. It combines philosophical analysis with most recent neurobiological findings on the time-dependent nature of neural mechanisms. Using oscillatory networks as a biologically well-grounded model of cortical activity, simulations of brain activity are studied and re-described by refined algebraic and model-theoretic methods. So a link between neuroscience and semantics is established.
Heinrich Scholz (1884-1956) ist einer der bemerkenswertesten deutschen Gelehrten des vergangenen Jahrhunderts. Schüler Adolf von Harnacks und Alois Riehls, widmete er sich zunächst der Religionsphilosophie und evangelischen Theologie. Durch einen "Glücksfall" 1921 mit den Principia Mathematica von Bertrand Russell und Alfred North Whitehead in Berührung gekommen, wandelt sich Scholz zum mathematischen Logiker und Grundlagenforscher; sein Münsteraner philosophischer Lehrstuhl wird zur Keimzelle des ersten Instituts für Mathematische Logik in Deutschland. Der vorliegende Band enthält Beiträge zur internationalen wissenschaftlichen Tagung "Heinrich Scholz: Logiker, Philosoph, Theologe", die im Jahr 2000 aus Anlaß des fünfzigjährigen Bestehens des Münsteraner Instituts für Mathematische Logik und Grundlagenforschung zu Ehren seines Gründers veranstaltet wurde. Die enthaltenen Aufsätze beleuchten u.a. Scholz ens Religionsphilosophie, seine Philosophie der Logik, seine Haltung zur Metaphysik sowie seine Freundschaft mit dem polnischen Logiker Jan Lukasiewicz.
This book is about the nature of sensory perception. Contributions focus on five questions, i.e.: (1) What distinguishes sensory perception from other cognitive states? Is it true, for instance, that perceptual content, in contrast to the phenomenal content of sensations like pain, always depends on the perceiver´s conceptual resources? (2) How do we have to explain the intentionality of perceptual states? (3) What is the nature of perceptual content? (4) In which sense do the objects of sensory perception depend on the constitution of the perceiver? How, for instance, do secondary qualities like colours, sounds and smells depend on the perception of human subjects? (5) How can we account for the intentionality of misperceptions? These questions are addressed through the interpretation of classical historical texts as well as in the context of systematical reflections. The authors: Margaret Atherton, Michael Ayers, Peter Baumann, Martha Brandt Bolton, Thomas Grundmann, Gary Hatfield, Rolf-Peter Horstmann, Andreas Kemmerling, Bertram Kienzle, Martine Nida-Rümelin, Dominik Perler, Jay F. Rosenberg, Katia Saporiti, Ralph Schumacher, Gerald Vision, Russel Wahl.
This book is intended as a comprehensive defense of psycho-physical dualism. It gives answers to the question of what dualism may consist in, and inquires into the broadly cultural motivation behind accepting dualism or its opponent physicalism. Arguments for dualism, among them strengthened versions of the famous classical arguments, are presented and defended against objections. Moreover, the various general objections to dualism are criticized in detail, for example, the allegation that dualism is of an anti-scientific nature. The book issues into developing the outlines of a dualistic theory of consciousness and agency. The theory outlined is not only compatible with science but actually connects with it. It offers a unified perspective on the phenomenon of conscious life and may serve as a basis for a general ethics regarding all conscious living beings.