Liane Ströbel

Michiel van Elk: Mind the body in embodiment

Mind the body in embodiment

The last decade cognitive neuroscience has seen a growing interest in an embodied view of cognition, according to which higher-level cognition is grounded in basic sensorimotor experiences. However, the embodied view of cognition has not gone unchallenged and has been criticized on both methodological and philosophical grounds. I will argue that many of the criticisms encountered by the embodied approach hinge on a cognitive interpretation of embodiment, that has often overlooked the fact that cognition takes place in a physical body acting in the real world. In other words: the embodied approach should put the body back in embodiment. To support this claim I will discuss developmental, behavioral and neuroimaging studies, relating different domains like perception, action, language and social cognition and highlighting the constitutive role of the body for cognition.