Międzyosobowy poziom wyjaśniania umysłu i zdolności poznawczych

Słowa kluczowe: the interpersonal level of explanation of mind, social mechanisms of mind transformation, the shared intentionality hypothesis, dialogic thinking, Vygotsky’s theory, Tomasello’s theory, mechanism-based explanation


What is the influence of the social and (to a lesser extent) the cultural on mind and cognition? The question will concern: (i) the nature of the relation between what is social and cultural, on the one hand, and the mind, cognitive ability, and cognitive development on the other; (ii) aspects of the mind, cognitive ability, and cognitive development affected by what is social and cultural; (iii) processes in which what is social and cultural becomes a part of individual cognitive functioning. This paper attempts to provide a conceptual framework within which the above questions can be answered. In the literature concerning the explanation of mind and cognitive abilities, attention is drawn to the importance of distinguishing levels of explanation. One of such approaches to multi-level explanation of the mind and cognition is the distinction drawn by Daniel Dennett between the personal level of explanation (e.g., level of beliefs, desires) and the subpersonal level of explanation (e.g., neural or computational). The purpose of this article is to argue that — recognising that the social and the cultural are one of the constitutive conditions of mind and cognition — we should posit a third level: the interpersonal level of explanation (ILE). The reason for postulating ILE is that there are specific domains in which interpersonal interactions affect elementary cognitive abilities and processes, which may thus result in their transformation into higher cognitive abilities and processes. The entire group of such domains will be defined as ILE, and at the centre of its explanatory potential will be the different types and forms of the said transformation. One of the main research objectives pursued at the ILE is to identify and formulate a taxonomy of transformative features and processes. Two models of such processes will be presented: the Vygotsky model and the Tomasello model. In the final part of this paper, the basic methodological assumptions of the ILE will be presented: the relative autonomy of this level of explanation, multi-level analysis, and the mechanism-based explanation. These assumptions will also be used to formulate general theses of the ILE.


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Żuromski, D. (2020). Międzyosobowy poziom wyjaśniania umysłu i zdolności poznawczych. Filozofia Nauki, 28(2), 47-74. https://doi.org/10.14394/filnau.2020.0009