Should Anthropology Be Part of Cognitive Science?
Article first published online: 8 JUN 2012
Copyright © 2012 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.
Topics in Cognitive Science
Volume 4, Issue 3, pages 342–353, July 2012
How to Cite
Beller, S., Bender, A. and Medin, D. L. (2012), Should Anthropology Be Part of Cognitive Science?. Topics in Cognitive Science, 4: 342–353. doi: 10.1111/j.1756-8765.2012.01196.x
- Issue published online: 11 JUL 2012
- Article first published online: 8 JUN 2012
- Received 28 February 2011; received in revised form 1 April 2011; accepted 20 April 2011
- Cognitive science;
- Universals and diversity;
Anthropology and the other cognitive science (CS) subdisciplines currently maintain a troubled relationship. With a debate in topiCS we aim at exploring the prospects for improving this relationship, and our introduction is intended as a catalyst for this debate. In order to encourage a frank sharing of perspectives, our comments will be deliberately provocative. Several challenges for a successful rapprochement are identified, encompassing the diverging paths that CS and anthropology have taken in the past, the degree of compatibility between (1) CS and (2) anthropology with regard to methodology and (3) research strategies, (4) the importance of anthropology for CS, and (5) the need for disciplinary diversity. Given this set of challenges, a reconciliation seems unlikely to follow on the heels of good intentions alone.