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Autopoiesis and Cognition : The Realization of the Living - Humberto Maturana Rumesin

Autopoiesis and Cognition

The Realization of the Living

Paperback Published: 31st August 1991
ISBN: 9789027710161
Number Of Pages: 146

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What makes a living system a living system? What kind of biological phenomenon is the phenomenon of cognition? These two questions have been frequently considered, but, in this volume, the authors consider them as concrete biological questions. Their analysis is bold and provocative, for the authors have constructed a systematic theoretical biology which attempts to define living systems not as objects of observation and description, nor even as interacting systems, but as self-contained unities whose only reference is to themselves. The consequence of their investigations and of their living systems as self-making, self-referring autonomous unities, is that they discovered that the two questions have a common answer: living systems are cognitive systems, and living as a process is a process of cognition. The result of their investigations is a completely new perspective of biological (human) phenomena. During the investigations, it was found that a complete linguistic description pertaining to the 'organization of the living' was lacking and, in fact, was hampering the reporting of results. Hence, the authors have coined the word 'autopoiesis' to replace the expression 'circular organization'. Autopoiesis conveys, by itself, the central feature of the organization of the living, which is autonomy.

Editorial Preface
General Table Of Contents
Foreword
Introduction (by Professor Maturana) Biology Of Cognition Dedication
Introduction
The Problem
Cognitive Function in General
The Observer
The Living System
Evolution
The Cognitive Process
Cognitive Function in Particular
Nerve Cells
Architecture
Function
Representation
Description
Thinking
Natural Language
Memory and Learning
The Observer
Problems in the Neurophysiology of Cognition
Conclusions
Post Scriptum Autopoiesis: The Organization Of The Living Preface (by Sir Stafford Beer) Introduction
On Machines, living and Otherwise
Machines
Living Machines
Dispensability of Teleonomy
Purposelessness
Individuality
Embodiments of Autopoiesis
Descriptive and Causal Notions
Molecular Embodiments
Origin
Diversity of Autopoiesis
Subordination to the Condition of Unity
Plasticity of Ontogeny
Reproduction, a Complication of the Unity
Evolution, a Historical Network
Second and Third Order Autopoietic Systems
Presence of Autopoiesis
Biological Implications
Epistemological Implications
Cognitive Implications Appendix: The Nervous System
Glossary
Bibliography
Index Of Names
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9789027710161
ISBN-10: 9027710163
Series: Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science (Paperback)
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 146
Published: 31st August 1991
Publisher: Springer
Country of Publication: NL
Dimensions (cm): 23.65 x 15.52  x 1.04
Weight (kg): 0.26