AU Mandelbaum, E
AF Mandelbaum, Eric
TI Numerical Architecture
SO TOPICS IN COGNITIVE SCIENCE
AB The idea that there is a Number Sense (Dehaene, 1997) or Core Knowledge
of number ensconced in a modular processing system (Carey, 2009) has
gained popularity as the study of numerical cognition has matured.
However, these claims are generally made with little, if any, detailed
examination of which modular properties are instantiated in numerical
processing. In this article, I aim to rectify this situation by
detailing the modular properties on display in numerical cognitive
processing. In the process, I review literature from across the
cognitive sciences and describe how the evidence reported in these works
supports the hypothesis that numerical cognitive processing is modular.
I outline the properties that would suffice for deeming a certain
processing system a modular processing system. Subsequently, I use
behavioral, neuropsychological, philosophical, and anthropological
evidence to show that the number module is domain specific,
informationally encapsulated, neurally localizable, subject to specific
pathological breakdowns, mandatory, fast, and inaccessible at the person
level; in other words, I use the evidence to demonstrate that some of
our numerical capacity is housed in modular casing.