Cognitive Semiotics Seminar: "Transformative Appraisal - A cognitive neuroscientific exploration into the dynamics of cognition and culture" (Adam Nilsson, LU)
In this shorter seminar (so as to manage one more after this) Adam will present his MA thesis in Cognitive Science, taking a rather unusual for us (but quite interesting) neuroscientific approach to cognition and culture. And thus to meaning. This time this will only be a "physical seminar" (unless people protest!) to simplify the interaction. So welcome to SOL, room H402.
My thesis explores the dynamics of cognitive and cultural systems by way of looking at the dynamics of an agent’s individual cultural schema (ICS). After a brief interlude in the influence of culture on cognition, I define an ICS as a socially learned cognitive organisation that predictively structures and interprets experience, drawing its properties from earlier accounts of schemas found in cognitive science. I then look at the ICS in the light of distributed cognition, where I characterise it as an individualised instance of a collective cultural schema (CCS). After that, I explore how the ICS changes over time in light of new experience (i.e. its dynamics) by way of predictive processing (PP) and relevance realisation (RR). I employ an implementation of the principles inherent in PP and RR in the sphere of the cognitive neuroscience of psychiatry, this implementation gives rise to the model of transformative appraisal (TA). TA is the problem an agent faces when updating his or her ICS, namely if it should, and if so how much and in what way the agent should update its ICS in light of novel experience. Psychiatric pathology is used as a model case of malfunctioning TA, and several psychiatric disorders are analysed using the TA-model. Finally all three frameworks (PP/RR/TA) are unified under the banner of predictive allostatic regulation.