O fim da cognição? Os estudos de ciência e tecnologia desafiam o conceito de agente cognitivo

The end of cognition? Science and technology studies challenge the concept of the cognising agent

Steve Woolgar

Resumos

O conceito de 'cognição' ocupa um lugar central em ampla literatura nas ciências sociais e na filosofia, onde um pressuposto-chave consiste na conceituação do agente cognitivo enquanto unidade central de análise. Entretanto, desdobramentos recentes nos Estudos de Ciência e Tecnologia (ECT) questionam este pressuposto e sugerem as bases para a sua modificação. Este trabalho descreve e avalia estes desdobramentos. Ele examina algumas críticas à visão largamente aceita de ciência e sugere que não menos que uma ampla inversão analítica é necessária para desafiar certos conceitos arraigados sobre cognição. A partir de uma revisão panorâmica de sucessivas tentativas de estabelecer simetria nos ECT, o presente artigo considera três conjuntos de pressupostos-chave em relação à agência: 1. o que faz o agente?; 2. qual a natureza do agente?; e 3. por que agentes humanos deveriam possuir o monopólio dos atributos humanos?

cognition; agency; ethnographic scepticism; scientific practice


The concept of 'cognition' is central to a wide literature in social science and philosophy where a key assumption conceptualises the central unit of analysis as a cognising agent. However, recent developments in Science and Technology Studies (STS) question this assumption and suggest the basis for its modification. The paper describes and evaluates these developments. It examines critiques of the "received view" of science and suggests that nothing less than a full scale analytic inversion is needed adequately to confront entrenched conceptions about cognition. It surveys progressive attempts to achieve symmetry in STS. It then considers three sets of key assumptions about agency: 1. what is the agent doing?; 2. what is the nature of the agent?; and 3. why should human agents have the monopoly on human attributes?

cognition; agency; ethnographic scepticism; scientific practice


ANÁLISE

O fim da cognição? Os estudos de ciência e tecnologia desafiam o conceito de agente cognitivo* * Tradução de Christopher J. Ballantyne e revisão técnica de Gilberto Hochman.

The end of cognition? Science and technology studies challenge the concept of the cognising agent

Steve Woolgar

Professor de sociologia e diretor do Centre for Research into Innovation, Culture and Technology (CRICT) na Brunel University, Londres

RESUMO

O conceito de 'cognição' ocupa um lugar central em ampla literatura nas ciências sociais e na filosofia, onde um pressuposto-chave consiste na conceituação do agente cognitivo enquanto unidade central de análise. Entretanto, desdobramentos recentes nos Estudos de Ciência e Tecnologia (ECT) questionam este pressuposto e sugerem as bases para a sua modificação. Este trabalho descreve e avalia estes desdobramentos. Ele examina algumas críticas à visão largamente aceita de ciência e sugere que não menos que uma ampla inversão analítica é necessária para desafiar certos conceitos arraigados sobre cognição. A partir de uma revisão panorâmica de sucessivas tentativas de estabelecer simetria nos ECT, o presente artigo considera três conjuntos de pressupostos-chave em relação à agência: 1. o que faz o agente?; 2. qual a natureza do agente?; e 3. por que agentes humanos deveriam possuir o monopólio dos atributos humanos?

Palavras-chave: cognição, agência, ceticismo etnográfico, prática científica.

ABSTRACT

The concept of 'cognition' is central to a wide literature in social science and philosophy where a key assumption conceptualises the central unit of analysis as a cognising agent. However, recent developments in Science and Technology Studies (STS) question this assumption and suggest the basis for its modification. The paper describes and evaluates these developments. It examines critiques of the "received view" of science and suggests that nothing less than a full scale analytic inversion is needed adequately to confront entrenched conceptions about cognition. It surveys progressive attempts to achieve symmetry in STS. It then considers three sets of key assumptions about agency: 1. what is the agent doing?; 2. what is the nature of the agent?; and 3. why should human agents have the monopoly on human attributes?

Keywords: cognition, agency, ethnographic scepticism, scientific practice.

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Recebido para publicação em novembro de 1995.

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  • *
    Tradução de Christopher J. Ballantyne e revisão técnica de Gilberto Hochman.

Datas de Publicação

  • Publicação nesta coleção
    25 Jul 2006
  • Data do Fascículo
    Fev 1996

Histórico

  • Recebido
    Nov 1995
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