Volume 4 · Number 1 · Pages 20–21
Two Basic Agreements and Two Doubts

Giovanni Pezzulo & Cristiano Castelfranchi

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Open peer commentary on the target article “How and Why the Brain Lays the Foundations for a Conscious Self” by Martin V. Butz. Excerpt: One intriguing concept that the author introduces and uses throughout the paper is the idea of an “anticipatory drive,” which is described as explaining the systematic tendency to develop anticipatory capabilities that ultimately support goal-oriented action. Although the idea of a common mechanism that explains a multitude of capabilities can be appreciated, it is unclear if the author uses the term “drive” in a literal or metaphorical sense. Should the evolutionary advantage, the selective “pressure” for anticipatory capacities and representation be considered a drive in the sense of Hull like, for example, the sex drive, or hunger? If this is true, it should be related to some bodily control structure like the other mentioned drives. Another possibility is that the anticipatory drive is an intrinsic motivation, like curiosity, which “pushes” towards certain situations, such as those that are more predictable. If this is true, it should be explained what is the exact nature of such intrinsic motivation.


Pezzulo G. & Castelfranchi C. (2008) Two basic agreements and two doubts. Constructivist Foundations 4(1): 20–21. http://constructivist.info/4/1/020

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