Group minds as extended minds

Philosophical Explorations 23 (3):1-17 (2020)


Despite clear overlap between the study of extended minds and the study of group minds, these research programs have largely been carried out independently. Moreover, whereas proponents of the extended mind thesis straightforwardly advocate the view that there are, literally, extended mental states, proponents of the group mind thesis tend to be more circumspect. Even those who advocate for some version of the thesis that groups are the subjects of mental states often concede that this thesis is true only in some loose or metaphorical sense. I argue that this imbalance is a mistake. A literal interpretation of the group mind thesis is no less plausible than the extended mind thesis, because group minds are particularly defensible instances of extended minds. However, the extended mind thesis, and the view that group minds are extended minds, are defensible only following a revision of the extended mind thesis.

Download options


    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 72,694

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library


Added to PP

58 (#199,966)

6 months
3 (#198,777)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Keith Raymond Harris
Ruhr-Universität Bochum

Similar books and articles

The Extended Self.Eric T. Olson - 2011 - Minds and Machines 21 (4):481-495.
Two Versions of the Extended Mind Thesis.Katalin Farkas - 2012 - Philosophia 40 (3):435-447.
From Embodied and Extended Mind to No Mind.Vincent C. Müller - 2012 - In Anna Esposito, Antonietta M. Esposito, Rüdiger Hoffmann, Vincent C. Müller & Alessandro Viniciarelli (eds.), Cognitive Behavioural Systems. Springer. pp. 299-303.
Whose (Extended) Mind Is It, Anyway?Keith Harris - 2021 - Erkenntnis 86 (6):1599-1613.
Rethinking Neuroethics in the Light of the Extended Mind Thesis.Neil Levy - 2007 - American Journal of Bioethics 7 (9):3-11.
Group Mind.Georg Theiner & Wilson Robert - 2013 - In Byron Kaldis (ed.), Encyclopedia of Philosophy and the Social Sciences. Sage Publications. pp. 401-04.
The Extended Mind Thesis is About Demarcation and Use of Words.Vincent C. Müller - 2018 - Reti, Saperi, Linguaggi: Italian Journal of Cognitive Sciences 2:335-348.