The Way We Think: Conceptual Blending and The Mind's Hidden Complexities
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The Way We Think: Conceptual Blending and The Mind's Hidden Complexities

3.93 of 5 stars 3.93  ·  rating details  ·  95 ratings  ·  9 reviews
In its first two decades, much of cognitive science focused on such mental functions as memory, learning, symbolic thought, and language acquisition --the functions in which the human mind most closely resembles a computer. But humans are more than computers, and the cutting-edge research in cognitive science is increasingly focused on the more mysterious, creative aspects...more
Paperback, 464 pages
Published March 18th 2003 by Basic Books (first published April 2002)
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I was hugely disappointed by this book. One of the authors is Mark Turner, who had written an earlier seminal book on how the mind works, The Literary Mind. The current book promised to revolutionize the way we look at our minds, our thinking, and our behavior. And yet this lengthy tome has only one insight: that we think with metaphors. The authors call it 'blending' but it's essentially metaphor. The idea is that we're remarkable because we can think or say something like, "I've got nothing" w...more
Bernard Kripkee
This is a lovely book that investigates language and thought from a philosophical and literary stance. It convincingly demonstrates some fascinating phenomena, but it has serious lacunae and begs many difficult questions. I liked it more for the questions it raises than for the answers it gives. What it emphatically does not do is marshal the machinery of modern brain science, including anatomy and physiology, toward an understanding of mind. As a linguist trained in Chomsky's approach to syntax...more
Joel Daniel Harris
This will be updated with a brief review upon completion. Below my quick reflection, you'll find my detailed notes/comments. Enjoy as much as you'd like.

-innovation/invention is what sets humans apart (p v)
-work has been done studying detail areas of creativity, but little done on the entire entity (p v)
Ch. 1: The Age of Form and the Age of Imagination
-"Form does not present meaning but instead picks out regularities that run throughout meanings." (p 5)
-Three key terms: Identity, In...more
Taylor Ellwood
It's an interesting book that will challenge your thinking about you think and relate to different concepts in the world. At times, I think the authors stretch their theory, but overall I found this to be a solid book with good examples being used to illustrate what they meant by conceptual blending. I found the focus on language and metaphor to be particularly fascinating. With that said, this is a book best read slow and considered carefully. The concepts are complex and will challenge your th...more
Michael Weaver
I was a little disappointed with this book, the title should have been Cognitive Behavior for Idiots. His theory of the origin of languages was different but definitely needed to support the opening supposition more. Though I can respect the notion of Conceptual Integration I though a lot of what was said mirrored Lakoff's, Minsky's, and Carbonell's work in a forced class 101 sort of way. If you are new to Cognitive blending or just want to get the basic principles, it is a OK place to start.
For anyone who wants to understand where all those thoughts come from, or are they words? Technical linguistics riffing outside of the normal science (Kuhn) but inside the brain...least that's the implication if you squint the right way.
"The way we think is not the way we think we think." Fascinating but dense; I returned this book to the library after getting about halfway through it.
Lots of information. It honestly wasn't the most entertaining book I've ever read but it was interesting. I much prefer Steven Pinker's style.
Sean Mcgreevey
Dense and challenging to read, this book is fascinating.
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