[Neuroscience] Re: Lookingforonlineorebookneurosciencedictionaries or encyclopedias

Glen M. Sizemore gmsizemore2 at yahoo.com
Mon Jul 17 09:54:31 EST 2006


I'm not ignoring this. Am fighting many different battles currently, as well 
as getting data ready for a lab meeting. I'll try to return to this.

"konstantin kouzovnikov" <myukhome at hotmail.com> wrote in message 
news:mailman.248.1152986183.20007.neur-sci at net.bio.net...
> KK:    Glen: I hope you do not mind me being interested in understanding 
> your positions better.
> I just would like to follow these two statements:
>>that results from those changes, but the concepts of cognitive "science" 
>>simply explanatory fictions.
>>(and bear in
>>mind that what I am criticizing the conceptual structure of cognitive
> KK: Could you just give me a backgrounder or a couple of specific examples 
> for each?
>>GS: Imaging is a feat of physics and engineering. It has nothing to do 
>>cognitive "science." Thus when an area "lights up" it seems like 
>>"Oh! That's where the executive is!" "Oh! That's where the little 
>>spirit reads the 'cognitive map.'"
> KK: I do like your analogy. There are too many "Christmas tree"-like 
> approaches. However, don't you think that various quality of a job done is 
> a ... normal distribution thing in any field of human activity? You asked 
> me to give you some info re: the research I've mentioned before. I'll give 
> you the links to a couple of my recent favorites. I do find them not 
> fitting into your description:
> http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=12880804&dopt=Abstract
> as I like this lab a lot, here is a link:
> http://www.brain-dynamics.net/braindynamics/publications/pubs_all.jsp
> essentially, any  paper by either Williams or Liddle will do..
>>but I don't intend right now to
>>launch a criticism of methodology. The conceptual problems with cognitive
>>"science" are so overwhelming that all other issues should take a back 
> KK: Glen, I hope you do realize that we would need to have something 
> beyond your general statements, right? It is not just you doing a cope 
> out, or is it?
>>GS: Are you saying that we can, for example, say exactly what is going on
>>when we establish, say, a so-called conditioned emotional response in a 
>>That is nonsense. We are not even close.
> KK: don't you think you've changed the subject? I am saying that each 
> "tribe" has ability to contribute, eventually, so, Yes, cog neuroscience 
> has a lot to contribute, in addition to what was done in behaviorism. It 
> is you who is saying "say exactly what is going on ", not me.  No one is 
> in position to provide a "final answer". Let's just recall that you and I 
> are talking about cog neuroscience being a complete crap, in your view.
> But you "rat" thing is a good one. I'd like to stay with this one for a 
> while. It may surprise you, but, as Captain Spoke would say, it is 
> illogical to assume that the knowledge of what "exactly" going on in a rat 
> can be established before a similar event is understood in humans. Why? 
> Because of the nature of the science which demands not an A or a B, but A 
> and B together. Allow me to explain,  To understand "exactly" what's going 
> on in a system, would ALSO  require the system speaking back to you, or 
> being able to contribute some self-generated data which is impossible to a 
> dog, or a rat, especially if one is dead. In other words, you can go a 
> long way with rats, but only so far. Any scientific product which won't 
> contain ALSO the type of data that they used to call "introspective" will 
> be INVARIABLY short of having SUFFICIENT data to apply YOUR label 
> "EXACTLY". Further explanation, it is shutting down "conscious" (or 
> accessible to introspection) allowed factoring out non-conscious, in the 
> recent translational and integrative research, also with the use of 
> neuroimaging. One cannot do it in a rat, not really.
> So,  SOME progress has been taking place in the cognitive neuroscience of 
> emotion . You can't deny it.
>>GS: Freud was right about a couple of things but his mental models were
> KK: Glen, again, could you give me a 2-3 liner regarding what is it 
> exactly that you mean? What are "a couple of things"? What are Freud's 
> mental models that you like and dislike? It seems impossible to get out of 
> you anything palpable. Is there a reason for it?
>>because most people do not know that radical behaviorism places a lot of
>>emphasis on self-talk, imagining, etc.
> KK: "radical"? is there a definition to what exactly it is? Is there a 
> link to read about?
>>KK: Pavlovian behaviorism was largely physiological science rather than
>>GS: Nonsense. There was some manipulation of the brain, but Pavlov's work
>>involved manipulating the environment and measuring behavior. > He talked 
>>about the brain a lot,
>>but the work is most famous for is purely behavioral.
> KK: and what was the goal of manipulation? (A formal employee of the 
> Pavlov's Institute, I'd like you to you to tell me this one). Let me tell 
> you, though. The overall goal was to show that brain is the bearer of the 
> mental faculties while "brain" was what these guys used to call as 
> "physiology".  What you threw in the garbage and called it "Pavlov used to 
> talk about the brain a lot" was the entire point, So, an alternative 
> interpretation of what they did is as this: they manipulated brain by a / 
> manipulation of environment and  b/ observing and measuring behavior to 
> make what you are refusing to see in behaviorism - exactly the type of 
> generalizations you so resent when they are done by cognitive 
> neuroscience.' It is the same mythology, the same "conceptualizations", 
> etc.
>>GS: Well, it is unlikely that we will agree upon what is "good."
> KK: Not if you would continue being vague. What's you definition of good?
> This is what I still remember about the Soviet psych (sorry, can't call 
> Soviet and post-Soviet as Russian; the Russian is either dead or all in 
> "their heads"):
> Luria (a Georgian guy, by the way, like Schewarnadze) gave the world the 
> Neuropsychology, no matter how much Nebraska-Luria folks continues to 
> bastardize his models. Although, as I referred to before, the communists 
> castrated the scientific community, there still were a few great 
> developments. I am sure you don't know about them as the post-soviet 
> science continues to be self-contained with the majority of the Russians 
> taking the benefit from doing science on several languages while the 
> majority of their science continues to belong to the "dark side" of the 
> moon, inaccessible to you, for instance.
> No matter how much they used Vygotsky's developmental stuff to raise up 
> the young communist league members, no one in the filed can work without 
> his still very much valid conceptualization as well as the 
> assessment/experimental parts.
> Had you known the works of Boris Vekker  and Ananiev, you'd have no choice 
> but take your hut off. Prof. Vekker's theory of invariant information 
> processing is as recent as from 60s and 70s, but still is the only serious 
> methodology in existence offering logical and methodologically correct 
> opportunity for convergence of the so fractured multitude of psychological 
> schools of thought. If Prof. Vekker were any good at spin-doctoring of his 
> science as Chomskie is, his hugely important theory would not be one of 
> the biggest losses in the field, at the time when objective, 
> methodologically correct tool for conceptual convergence in psychology is 
> need as never before.
> A behaviorist , you would be interested to know that the big ideas as the 
> Theory of Mind or the new wave called "mirror neurons" are just humble 
> shadows of what has been done in the SU in the area of imitative behavior 
> in animals and humans, by those who called themselves behaviorists and 
> physiologists. You know when? Between 1932 and the end of the 70s. A 
> massive body of knowledge. I have not a clue why this information is not 
> here, in the West.
> There are more curious things about the "Russian" neuroscience. Do you 
> know that 95% of the staff from the Russian "physiological psychology" 
> labs ended in Germany, between the early teens of the 20th century and the 
> beginning of the 30th? So, a lot what we know now as German science had 
> the benefit of the exodus of the old traditional neuroscience from the 
> country taken by commies.
> Have you ever heard about sensory deprivation method? Prof. Kuznetsov, the 
> developer of the approach, eventually went to St.Pet's and I am happy to 
> say that my practicum was at his department. Great guy he was.
> Do you know who were the developers of the self-guided rockets? Guys and 
> girls just like from the MIT, mostly neuropsychologists of cognitive 
> neuroscience type. You see how the American product works in the Middle 
> East, right?
> Largely unknown psychosemantics tradition (Schmelyov and Petrenko) are now 
> the granddaddies of this arm of research, still ahead of the pack.
> I know that now there is a number of their folks are here, in the West, 
> having very serious positions in behavioral science, especially in the 
> areas of computational approaches as well as in neuroscience. However, the 
> majority of them are snapped up by big pharma's , so one hears the name 
> only infrequently.
> Still,. the consequences of the red massacre are right there, not a lot of 
> good stuff. But to say there is nothing important would be a mistake.
> So, I am terminally interested in having the details about your 
> "criticism" of the fundamentals of cognitive neuroscience and Freud's 
> models. Any chance you can share it with us, so we know where the passion 
> is coming from?
> Cheers,
> Konstantin
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