The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of the Social Mind  book cover
1st Edition

The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of the Social Mind

Edited By

Julian Kiverstein

ISBN 9780367370534
Published September 11, 2019 by Routledge
592 Pages

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Book Description

The idea that humans are by nature social and political animals can be traced back to Aristotle. More recently, it has also generated great interest and controversy in related disciplines such as anthropology, biology, psychology, neuroscience and even economics. What is it about humans that enabled them to construct a social reality of unrivalled complexity? Is there something distinctive about the human mind that explains how social lives are organised around conventions, norms, and institutions?

The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of the Social Mind is an outstanding reference source to the key topics and debates in this exciting subject and is the first collection of its kind. An international team of contributors present perspectives from diverse areas of research in philosophy, drawing on comparative and developmental psychology, evolutionary anthropology, cognitive neuroscience, and behavioural economics. The thirty-two original chapters are divided into five parts:

  • The evolution of the social mind: including the social intelligence hypothesis, co- evolution of culture and cognition, ethnic cognition, and cooperation;
  • Developmental and comparative perspectives: including primate and infant understanding of mind, shared intentionality, and moral cognition;
  • Mechanisms of the moral mind: including norm compliance, social emotion, and implicit attitudes;
  • Naturalistic approaches to shared and collective intentionality: including joint action, team reasoning and group thinking, and social kinds;
  • Social forms of selfhood and mindedness: including moral identity, empathy and shared emotion, normativity and intentionality.

Essential reading for students and researchers in philosophy of mind and psychology, The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of the Social Mind is also suitable for those in related disciplines such as social psychology, cognitive neuroscience, economics and sociology.

Table of Contents

Introduction Julian Kiverstein

Part 1: The evolution of the social mind

1. The (R)evolution of Primate Cognition: Does the Social Intelligence Hypothesis Lead us Around in Anthropocentric Circles? Louise Barrett

2. Cultural evolution and the mind Tim Lewens and Adrian Boutel

3. Pedagogy and social learning in human development Richard Moore

4. Embodying culture: integrated cognitive systems and cultural evolution Richard Menary and Alexander James Gillett

5. The evolution of tribalism Edouard Machery

6. Personhood and humanhood: an evolutionary scenario John Barresi

Part 2: Developmental and Comparative Perspectives

7. Pluralistic folk psychology in human and other apes Kristin Andrews

8. The development of individual and shared intentionality Hannes Rakoczy

9. False belief understanding in the first years of life Rose Scott, Erin Roby, and Megan Smith

10. Cross-cultural considerations in social cognition Jane Suilin Lavelle

11. The social formation of human minds Jeremey Carpendale, Michael Frayn, and Philip Kucharczyk

12. Pluralism, interaction and the ontogeny of social cognition Anika Fiebich, Shaun Gallagher, and Dan Hutto   

13. Sharing and fairness in development Philippe Rochat and Erin Robbins

Part 3: Mechanisms of the Moral Mind

14. Doing the right thing for the wrong reason: reputation and moral behaviour Jan Engelmann and Christian Zeller

15. Is non-consequentialism a feature or a bug? Fiery Cushman

16. Emotional processing in individual and social calibration Bryce Huebner and Trip Glazer

17. Implicit attitudes, social learning and moral credibility Michael Brownstein

18. Social motivation in computational neuroscience: or if brains are prediction machines then the Humean theory of motivation is false Matteo Colombo

Part 4: Naturalistic Approaches to Shared and Collective Intentionality

19. Joint distal intentions: who shares what? Angelica Kaufmann

20. Joint action: a minimal account Stephen Butterfill

21. Commitment in Joint Action John Michael

22. First-person plural perspective Mattia Gallotti

23. Team reasoning Natalie Gold and Jurgis Karpus

24. Virtual bargaining: a micro-foundation for social interaction Nick Chater and Jennifer Misyak

25. Social construction and social norms: two types of glue Ron Mallon

Part 5: Social forms of selfhood and mindedness

26. Morality and the self Jesse Prinz and Shaun Nichols

27. The extended and embedded character hypothesis Mark Alfano and Josh A. Skorburg

28. Self-interpretation and mindshaping Tad Zawidzki

29. Vicarious experiences: perception, mirroring or imagination Pierre Jacob and Frederique de Vignemont

30. Intersubjectivity and collective intentionality Dan Zahavi and Allesandro Salice

31. Social approaches to intentionality Glenda Satne

32. Normativity Joseph Rouse.


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Julian Kiverstein is Assistant Professor of Neurophilosophy at the University of Amsterdam, and Research Fellow at the Academic Medical Centre, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. He works in philosophy of cognitive science and neuroscience, and is currently completing a book on embodied and enactive cognition.


'This is a fascinating and important collection. It brings together leading thinkers in philosophy, psychology, neuroscience, and anthropology to explain and synthesize work on the crucial insight that the human mind is inherently social. It serves both as a comprehensive introduction and overview of the field, as well as an up-to-date presentation of cutting-edge research. It will be invaluable to students and professionals alike.' - Brian Epstein, Tufts University, USA

'An unparalleled collection, providing both breadth and depth in the exploration of the exciting and emerging field of social cognition. The Handbook serves as an overview of the current intellectual landscape, but also presents new insights that will become the cornerstone for future development of the field. It will be the standard-bearer for issues in social cognition for years to come.' - Ellen Fridland, King’s College, London, UK

'This is an exceptionally rich and wide-ranging volume that is sure to be an essential resource for anyone working in the philosophy and science of sociality. The breadth of coverage is terrific, and the contributors all make good on the promise that the social mind in its various dimensions is best studied through an interdisciplinary approach, bringing philosophy into into conversation with psychology, anthropology, neuroscience, economics, and evolutionary biology. This is empirically-informed philosophy - and philosophically-informed science - at its best.' - John Schwenkler, Florida State University, USA