Tag Archive: social science


Spock vs Data

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In Gardner’s elaboration the role of emotions in his work is a cognitive-science model of mind.

Emphasizing cognition as understanding one-self and others in motives, in habits of working, and in putting that insight into use in conducting ones own life and getting along with others. But like the kinestetic realm, where phisical brilliance manifests itself nonverbally, the realm of the emotions extends, the realm of emotions extends, too beyond the reach of language and cognotion.

With the coming of 1960s of the cognitive revolution the focus of science turned to how the mind registers and stores information, and the nature of intelligence. But emotions were still off-limits.

It is hyperrational, rather like Star Treck’s Mr. Spock, the archetype of dry emotions bytes unmuddies by feeling, embodying the idea that emotions have no place in intelligence and only muddle our picture of mental life.

The cognitive scientists who embraced this view have been seduced by the computer as the operative model of mind, forgetting that, in reality, the brain’s wetware is awash in a messy, pulsating puddle of neurochemicals.

The last eighty years of research on intelligence is gradually changing as psychology has began to recognize the essential role of feeling in thinking. Rather like the Spokish character Data in Star Treck: The Next Generation, where it comes to appreciate the power and virtues of emotions in mental life.

When cognition is not enough!

Emotions enrich a model of mind that leaves them out is impoverished. Gardners points out that,

“Many people with IQ of 160 works for people with IQ of 100, if the former hava a poor intrapersonal intelligence and the latter a higher one. And in day-to-day world no intelligence is more important than the interpersonal.”



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Each new day’s news comes to us rife with such reports of the disintegration of civility and safety, on onslaught of mean-spirited impulse running amok. Has seen a unparalled burst of scientific studies of emotion, the glimpses of the brain of work, made possible by innovative methods.

 

They have made visible for the first time in human history what has always been a source of deep mystery: exactly how this intricate mass of cells operates while we think and feel, imagine and dream.

This flood of neurobiological data lets us understand more clearly than ever how the brain’s centers for emotion move us to rage or to tears, and how more ancient parts of the brain, which stir us, are channeled for better or worse.

 

This unprecedented clarity on the working of emotions and their failings brings into focus some fresh remedies from our collective emotional crisis. Now science is finally able to speak to these urgent perplexing questions of the psyche at its most irrational, to map with some precision at the human heart.


 

 

 

 

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