PhD project

Extended remembering: Philosophy of memory and the extended mind hypothesis

Supervisor: Kirk Michaelian (Centre for Philosophy of Memory, Université Grenoble Alpes)

According to an influential hypothesis in philosophy of mind, mental processes and states can, under specific circumstances, be constituted by external resources (Clark and Chalmers 1988; Clark 2008; Michaelian and Sutton 2013; Rowlands 2003; Sutton 2010). In order to illustrate this "extended mind hypothesis", philosophers often appeal to cases of remembering in which agents use objects and other agents to encode, store and retrieve information. Although philosophers continue to refine the extended mind hypothesis and although cognitive scientists continue to improve empirical frameworks to test it (Barnier et al. 2008), the interactions between proponents of this hypothesis and philosophers of memory are still minimal. For instance, The Oxford Handbook of 4E Cognition does not include any chapter on memory and The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Memory only includes a chapter on extended remembering (Clowes 2017). It is unsurprising then that philosophical theories of memory have not still explained the nature of extended remembering. Moreover, whether those theories are compatible with the extended mind hypothesis is unclear. The general aim of my PhD project is to fill these gaps.