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Behav Brain Sci. 2013 Aug;36(4):421-2. doi: 10.1017/S0140525X12002105.

The brain as part of an enactive system.

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Department of Philosophy, University of Memphis, Memphis, TN 38152, USA.


The notion of an enactive system requires thinking about the brain in a way that is different from the standard computational-representational models. In evolutionary terms, the brain does what it does and is the way that it is, across some scale of variations, because it is part of a living body with hands that can reach and grasp in certain limited ways, eyes structured to focus, an autonomic system, an upright posture, etc. coping with specific kinds of environments, and with other people. Changes to any of the bodily, environmental, or intersubjective conditions elicit responses from the system as a whole. On this view, rather than representing or computing information, the brain is better conceived as participating in the action.

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