About This Site
The purpose of this site is to bring together
neurosciences and the semiotics.
The postings on this site may come from sources apparently quite remote from one another, such as aesthetics and physiology, and some other from fields closely linked, such as mythology and psychology. If you are interested in posting articles on this site please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Any study on the brain or on the mental signs (in reasoning, reflecting or dreaming) is of great interest to Neurosemiotics.com
This site is moderated by Pierre Voyer. Pierre holds a Doctorate (PhD.) in Semiotics from the University of Quebec in Montreal (UQAM). He also holds a Masters Degree in Literary Studies as well as a Bachelor’s Degree in Literary Studies from UQAM and one other Bachelor’s Degree in Arts from Collège Sainte-Marie, Québec. For 25 years he was an instructor at CEGEP Lionel-Groulx, Quebec. He has published novels and an essay on the role of rock music in the sixties sexual revolution. He also has published many of his papers on the semiotics of thinking, logic, mythology, styles and aesthetics. In his spare time he is a prolific painter who keeps experimenting with a variety of unexpected media. He also finds time to dedicate to musical pursuits and has just recently recorded a vritual CD, as a part of a collaborative effort know as the Elsie Dee Project.
Dr Norbert Andersch
Dr Norbert Andersch is a neurologist and psychiatrist with a special interest in psychopathology, neuro-traumatology and the concept of schizophrenia. He has practiced for twenty years in both specialities in Germany and England. He is consultant psychiatrist at South London & Maudsley NHS Trust and Member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists. He has been studying Ernst Cassirer's Impact on the Concept of Mental Illness (Symbolic Form and Mental Illness) at the Warburg Library (University of London) and the Mayer-Gross Library (Institute of Psychiatry). He is a member of the Philosophy Special Interest Group at the Royal College and the Maudsley Philosophy Group at SLaM/IoP.
Can computers be creative? Where do new ideas come from? Is learning necessary for thought? Stefan Leijnen is interested in these questions. In order to gain insight into these challenging issues and their consequences, he builds simulations of complex neural networks and multi-agent societies. Often inspired by biological principles and grounded in a philosophical framework provided by pragmatism, these systems shed light into the evolutionary dynamics of neural pathway formation, the logic of firing patterns or the emergence of group behavior. Currently, Stefan is developing a stochastic neural network model in harmony with psychological models of creativity, in order to further uncover the neural roots of the creative process and its relation to human learning.
During his computer science studies Stefan Leijnen was mostly interested in robotics and followed the embodiment paradigm of Luc Steels, Rodney Brooks and others. However, after several years he decided to shift focus more towards the processes within the brain itself. At Berkeley Stefan studied under neurolinguist Terrence Deacon in order to investigate the principles of symbolic and subsymbolic processing in brain and computer. This resulted in a neural network approach to ground computational symbols in a hierarchical system of indices and icons, based on C.S. Peirce's pragmatist epistemology. The footprints of these ideas are carried further in his current research and publications.
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