Volume 17 · Number 3 · Pages 233–235
Why not Both (but also, Neither)? Markov Blankets and the Idea of Enactive-Extended Cognition

Juan Diego Bogotá

Log in to download the full text for free

> Citation > Similar > References > Add Comment


Open peer commentary on the article “A Moving Boundary, a Plastic Core: A Contribution to the Third Wave of Extended-Mind Research” by Timotej Prosen. Abstract: I sympathize with Prosen’s conviction in integrating enactivism, the free-energy principle, and the extended-mind hypothesis. However, I show that he uses the concept of “boundary” ambiguously. By disambiguating it, I suggest that we can keep both Markov blankets and operational closure as ways of drawing the boundaries of a cognitive system. Nevertheless, from an enactive perspective, neither of those boundaries is a “cognitive” boundary.


Bogotá J. D. (2022) Why not both (but also, neither)? Markov blankets and the idea of enactive-extended cognition. Constructivist Foundations 17(3): 233–235. https://constructivist.info/17/3/233

Export article citation data: Plain Text · BibTex · EndNote · Reference Manager (RIS)


Bruineberg J., Dolega K., Dewhurst J. & Baltieri M. (2022) The emperor’s new Markov blankets. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, in press. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Colombetti G. (2017) Enactive affectivity, extended. Topoi 36(3): 445–455. https://cepa.info/5681
Di Paolo E. A. (2009) Extended life. Topoi 28: 9–21. https://cepa.info/322
Gallagher S. (2018) The extended mind: State of the question. The Southern Journal of Philosophy 56(4): 421–447. https://cepa.info/6927
Kirchhoff M., Parr T., Palacios E., Friston K. & Kiverstein J. (2018) The Markov blankets of life: Autonomy, active inference and the free energy principle. Journal of The Royal Society Interface 15(138): 20170792. https://cepa.info/5393
Parr T., Pezzulo G. & Friston K. J. (2022) Active inference: The free energy principle in mind, brain, and behavior. MIT Press, Cambridge MA. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Pearl J. (1988) Probabilistic reasoning in intelligent systems: Networks of plausible inference. Morgan Kaufmann, Portland OR. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Raja V., Valluri D., Baggs E., Chemero A. & Anderson M. L. (2021) The Markov blanket trick: On the scope of the free energy principle and active inference. Physics of Life Reviews 39: 49–72. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Thompson E. (2007) Mind in life: Biology, phenomenology. Harvard University Press, Cambridge MA. Reviewed in. https://constructivist.info/3/2/117
Varela F. J. (1997) Patterns of Life: Intertwining identity and cognition. Brain Cognition 34(1): 72–87. https://cepa.info/2010
Virgo N., Rosas F. & Biehl M. (2022) Embracing sensorimotor history: Time-synchronous and time-unrolled Markov blankets in the free-energy principle. Commentary on “The emperor’s new Markov blankets” by Jelle Bruineberg et al. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, in press. Preprint available at PsyArXiv, https://doi.org/10.31234/osf.io/7pqmr

Comments: 0

To stay informed about comments to this publication and post comments yourself, please log in first.