Group cognition


This chapter provides an overview of contemporary theoretical debates about group cognition. It explores some history of group cognition, focusing in particular on nineteenth- and twentieth-century debates in collective psychology and the super-organism tradition. The chapter considers philosophical developments in the twentieth century that have led to the revival of the idea of group cognition in the early twenty-first century. It introduces several positive accounts in the contemporary literature. The chapter focuses on criticisms of group cognition, as well as possible responses to these worries. The have been a number of attempts by critics of the group cognition to identify the “mark” of cognition and show that putative cases of group cognition lack it. The systems objection can be used to rule out group cognition as well since group cognition is often context-dependent, intermittent, and transitory.

Publication Title

The Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Psychology