The Roles of the Goal and Internal Models in Motor Representation: A Pragmatic Explanation

Abstract

Motor representation is understood by Grush (2004) and Pezzulo (2008, 2011) in terms of simulation/emulation: internal models simulate motor effectors and environmental conditions. Motor intentionality, thus, is regarded as based on the standing-for relation. In their thesis of motor representation, knowing in preparation of motor actions is highlighted but the system’s doing when manipulating on-going motor activities is overlooked. That ‘system’s doing’, however, retains an essential role in motor intentionality, a role which accounts for complexities of real environment, animate apparatus to be represented, and goal-oriented nature of motor movements. Contrasted to Grush and Pezzulo’s thesis, my research highlights a pragmatic role of motor representation, pragmatic in sense of explaining how a motor agent can successfully achieve a goal by maintaining motor movements. Internal models, in my account, not only supply emulation but serve to assist the motor system in its goal-achieving activities, resulting in efficient control and flexible movements.


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