Prof. Dr. Peter Carruthers (University of Maryland) will give a virtual talk at the CogSci Colloquium on Wednesday, Sept 28th, at 15:00 (CEST).
Title: Questioning and model-free meta-cognition
Abstract: There has been a flurry of recent work on the cognitive neuroscience of curiosity. But everyone in the field offers definitions of curiosity that are metacognitive in nature. Curiosity is said to be a desire for knowledge, or a motivation to learn about something, and so on. This appears problematic. It either makes it difficult to see how curiosity can properly be attributed to cats and rats (let alone birds and bees), or it commits us to attributing capacities for self-awareness in these creatures for which we lack evidence. The goal of the talk is to offer a re-interpretation of the main findings in the literature, showing how it is possible for creatures to be curious while lacking any conception of their own or others’ minds. But at the same time I will argue that there is something that a metacognitive conception of curiosity gets right. The talk will first situate curiosity among affective states generally, before going on to elucidate both its contents and its dependence on forms of model-free sensitivity to one’s own ignorance.
Prof. Carruthers agreed to have few single/small-group meetings after his talk. If you are interested in meeting with him to discuss your own or his research, please register until Wednesday (Sept 21) by sending an e-mail to Feride (email@example.com).
The talk will be held online, via Zoom:
Meeting ID: 660 2496 9652
Feride and Marina