Organisers: Dr Tom Roberts & Dr Joel Krueger
4-5th July 2016, University of Exeter
A recent trend in philosophy of mind and cognitive science has come to rethink the role played by the brain in determining the content and character of our psychological states. These “4E” approaches see the mind as embodied, embedded, enacted, and/or extended: an agent’s mental life depends upon both her physical embodiment and her situatedness within a wider material and cultural environment.
This conference aims to explore whether, and how, this 4E paradigm can be applied to the distinctive cognitive and perceptual phenomena that belong to the aesthetic domain: those implicated in the agent’s powers of creativity, expression and performance (on the one hand) and those involved in her appreciation of, and engagement with, objects of aesthetic significance (on the other). It seeks to encourage dialogue between researchers whose expertise lies in aesthetics and the philosophy of art, and those who favour 4E approaches in philosophy of mind, with a view to understanding how these two camps together might fruitfully inform topics such as the performance and appreciation of artforms including music and dance; the role of material culture in supporting artistic achievement; and the lived experience of designed objects and the built environment.
Guiding questions include: How are an individual’s creative virtues shaped and scaffolded by her engagement with a material environment? Do art-makers create an artistic niche, as a thinker may create a cognitive niche? Is the 4E conception of affective experience as embodied and enacted able to shed light upon our emotional responses to aesthetic entities? To what extent is our experience of architecture and landscape determined by how these spaces solicit and afford skilful, embodied activity? How do our bodily capacities for movement inform our appreciation of music? Are there aesthetic affordances?
Invited speakers include:
• Clare Mac Cumhaill (University of Durham)
• Lambros Malafouris (University of Oxford)
• Komarine Romdenh-Romluc (University of Sheffield)
• Barbara Montero (City University of New York)
• Bence Nanay (University of Antwerp & Cambridge University)
• Erik Rietveld (University of Amsterdam)
• Tom Cochrane (University of Sheffield)
• Elisabeth Schellekens (University of Uppsala)
There is room for three submitted papers on the program. Please send abstracts no longer than 250 words to Joel Krueger (email@example.com) by 2 May. Notifications of acceptance will be sent by 9 May. Early-career and untenured scholars are especially encouraged to apply. There are some funds available to help defray travel and accommodation expenses.
Conference website now live at: