The Potential of a (nearly) Complete Structural Neuroanatomical Model of the Human Brain
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Fernández Pujals, Ana Maria
Generally, the main skeptical opposition that projects like the Connectome face are statements like: It is all very well to explain the machinery and mechanisms of the brain, but what will that really teach us about our selves, our minds, what makes us really tick, our mental life? People want to know, “well, what is this really going to teach us?” !is kind of skepticism is grounded in a basic preference for the familiarity of the theories of folk psychology. !ere is nothing entirely wrong with having that preference for your average layman, but this is a dangerous idea if it is used to guide the study both of the mind and the brain. I propose that part of the very compelling reason that a project like !e Connectome will be revolutionary to our understanding is precisely because it’s object of study is not the mind, nor the brain. Its object is the mind-brain. !is is a uniquely important step for cognitive sciences because it embodies the proper object of study: the mind-brain. To be sure, the explananda of mind-brain will evolve over time as greater understanding of the object is gained, but this initial recognition of mind-brain as the proper object of psychological and neuroscienti#c knowledge is a crucial one on the path of gaining understanding.