Call: Pictorial and Spatial Representation – Special issue of Review of Philosophy and Psychology


Pictorial and Spatial Representation
Special issue of the Review of Philosophy and Psychology

Guest editors: Valeria Giardino and Gabriel Greenberg

Deadline for submissions: 1 August 2013

The Theme

Pictorial and spatial representation play an essential role in a vast range of human communication and reasoning, exemplified by the widespread use of diagrams, maps, pictures, iconic gestures, comics, and film.

In this special issue of the Review of Philosophy and Psychology, we seek to bring together work from philosophy and cognitive science (including psychology, linguistics, and computer science) that breaks new ground in the study of spatial representation generally. Recent developments in these fields set the stage for new and exciting perspectives on this poorly understood, but philosophically and scientifically central subject matter.

The primary subject of this special issue is the public use of pictorial and spatial representations, including uses in a variety of functional roles, such as communication, externalized reasoning and proof, planning, and navigation. We will exclude research on the more familiar subject of spatial cognition, including perception and mental imagery, except insofar as it is related to public representational phenomena. We encourage submissions which pinpoint specific media, but which also address fundamental semantic concepts like content, veridicality, and validity as they apply to the variety of spatial representations. In addition, we welcome contributions which draw connections between contemporary philosophical and scientific research, as well as work which fosters rigorous engagement with empirical results and formal methods.

Potential articles might discuss:

  • The analysis of diagrams, pictures, or maps in terms of:
    • Syntax, semantics, or pragmatics;
    • Content, reference, or veridicality;
    • Validity, reasoning, or proof.
  • The cognitive, communicative, and practical functions of spatial representations (including pictorial representations).
  • Taxonomies of spatial representations.
  • The difference between spatial representations and linguistic representation.
  • The relationship between cognition or perception and spatial representation.

Invited Authors

  • Patrick Maynard (Western Ontario)
  • Sun-Joo Shin (Yale)
  • Matthew Stone (Rutgers)
  • Barbara Tversky (Columbia)

Important Dates

Submission deadline: 1 August 2013
Target publication date: 31 March 2014

How to submit

Prospective authors should register at: to obtain a login and select Pictorial and Spatial Representation as the article type. Manuscripts should be approximately 8,000 words and conform to the author guidelines available on the journal’s website.

About the journal

The Review of Philosophy and Psychology (ISSN: 1878-5158; eISSN: 1878-5166) is a peer-reviewed journal, published quarterly by Springer, which focuses on philosophical and foundational issues in cognitive science. The journal’s aim is to provide a forum for discussion on topics of mutual interest to philosophers and psychologists and to foster interdisciplinary research at the crossroads of philosophy and the sciences of the mind, including the neural, behavioural and social sciences. The journal publishes theoretical works grounded in empirical research as well as empirical articles on issues of philosophical relevance. It includes thematic issues featuring invited contributions from leading authors together with articles answering a call for papers.


For any queries, please email the guest editors: and


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