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ERIC Number: EJ923348
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jun
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0090-6905
Theoretic Note: The Relation of Embryology to Linguistic and Cognitive Process
Brown, Jason
Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, v40 n3 p189-194 Jun 2011
This paper is a conceptual essay that views the unfolding or individuation from the ovum to mind/brain form and process as the outcome of a unitary highly conserved pattern of epigenetic growth. The principle question concerns the extent to which the cognitive process can be understood as an extension or replication of primordial trends in the growth of organism. There are several lines of embryological study, some with a clear relation to cognitive process, others perhaps merely analogous, but there are sufficient data to support the claim that fundamental patterns in development recur in a momentary act of thought or perception. Indeed, the "Bauplan" that accounts for brain maturation at the cellular level accounts for the generation of the mind/brain state in maturity. The specification of cells in fetal brain growth corresponds with the progressive individuation of psychic structures in the course of early development. Growth trends in epigenetic process that translate the genetic code to morphology and physiology persist in the brain or psyche as patterns of mental process. Psychic structure is temporal, not spatial, and the structure of the mind/brain is ongoing formative process, not the resultant stabilities. One can say that in the brain, "morphology" is the form that process takes early in development, while brain "function" is the form process takes once structure is relatively settled. Put otherwise, morphogenesis first lays down form as structure, then lays down form as function (see Goodwin in "J Theor Biol" 97:43-55, 1982). The structure of the mind/brain is not a circuit board that outputs function, but is a recurrent activity that actualizes in behavior. Cognition is a mode of growth that is carried over from embryonic to adult life.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A