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The Nature of Consciousness


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Table of Contents

Part 1 Stream of consciousness: the stream of consciousness, William James; the Cartesian theatre and "filling in" the stream of consciousness, Daniel C. Dennett; the robust phenomenology of the stream of consciousness, Owen Flanagan. Part 2 Consciousness, science and methodology: prospects for a unified theory of consciousness or, what dreams are made of, Owen Flanagan; consciousness, folk psychology and cognitive science, Alvin I. Goldman; can neurobiology teach us anything about consciousness?, Patricia Smith Churchland; time and the observer -the where and when of consciousness in the brain, Daniel C. Dennett and Marcel Kinsbourne; begging the question against phenomenal consciousness, Ned Block; time for more alternatives, Robert Van Gulick. Part 3 The psychology and neuropsychology of consciousness: contrastive phenomenology - a thoroughly empirical approach to consciousness, Bernard J. Baars; visual perception and visual awareness after brain damage - a tutorial overview, Martha J. Farah; understanding consciousness - clues from unilateral neglect and related disorders, Edoardo Bisiach; modularity and consciousness, Tim Shallice; towards a neurobiological theory of consciousness, Francis Crick and Christof Koch. Part 4 Consciousness and content: consciousness and content, Colin McGinn; externalism and experience, Martin Davies; a representational theory of pains and their phenomenal character, Michael Tye; sensation and the content of experience - a distinction, Christopher Peacocke. Part 5 Function of consciousness: conscious inessentialism and the epiphenomenalist suspicion, Owen Flanagan; on a confusion about a function of consciousness, Ned Block; the path not taken, Daniel C. Dennett; availability - the cognitive basis of experience?, David J. Chalmers; fallacies or analyses?, Jennifer Church; two kinds of consciousness, Tyler Burge; understanding the phenomenal mind - are we all just armadillos?, part 2 - the absent qualia argument, Robert Van Gulick. Part 6 Metaphysics of consciousness: the identity thesis, Saul A. Kripke; reductionism and the irreducibility of consciousness, John R. Searle; a question about consciousness, Georges Rey; finding the mind in the neural world, Frank Jackson; breaking the hold - silicon brains, conscious robots and other minds, John R. Searle; the first-person perspective, Sydney Shoemaker. Part 7 Subjectivity and explanatory gap: what is it like to be a bat?, Thomas Nagel; can we solve the mind-body problem?, Colin McGinn; on leaving out what it's like, Joseph Levine. Part 8 The knowledge argument: understanding the phenomenal mind - are we all just armadillos?, part 1 - phenomenal knowledge and explanatory gaps, Robert Van Gulick; what Mary didn't know, Frank Jackson; knowing qualia - a reply to Jackson, Paul M. Churchland; what experience teaches, David Lewis; phenomenal states, Brian Loar. Part 9 Qualia: quining qualia, Daniel C. Dennett; the inverted spectrum, Sydney Shoemkaer; the intrinsic qualit

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This is a very impressive volume -- a comprehensive and superbly edited collection of essays on the hottest topic in the philosophy of mind. It will be the standard text for undergraduate and graduate courses dealing with consciousness. -- Stephen P. Stich, Professor of Philosophy and Cognitive Science, Rutgers University & CUNY Graduate Center This book has been worth waiting for. It is the first, and the only, comprehensive collection of contemporary writings on the topic of consciousness. If anyone needed a proof that consciousness has returned -- and regained its rightful place -- as a fundamental problem in the philosophy and science of the mind, here it is. The book brings to us, in one satisfyingly hefty volume, the classic papers of the past three decades that have shaped the current debates on consciousness, together with more recent, "state-of-the-art", discussions of all the major approaches and positions in this area. The familiar primary contributors to the field are represented here as well as many fresh voices with interesting things to say. The reader will get from this volume not only a full picture of the current state of the field but also a good sense of where the debates are headed. The appearance of this volume is a significant landmark: it both demonstrates the philosophical maturity of the field and lays out its problematic for the future. The three editors deserve our congratualations and gratitude for a job well done. Their book not only gives us a comprehensive coverage of the field but also, in an important way, helps to define the field itself. -- Jaegwon Kim, Professor of Philosophy, Brown University A grand tour of the best of the exploding literature on consciousness. This indispensible collection covers a wide range of topics, from metaphysics to methodology, neuropsychology and more. The papers are well-chosen: diverse, multi-faceted yet without exception substantial. A rock crusher! -- Andy Clark, Professor of Philosophy and director of the Philosophy/Neuroscience/Psychology Program, Washington University A broad set of essays on consciousness, many of which deal with foundational issues in Psychology and Philosophy of Psychology.They should be of interest to cognitive psychologists in general, including those doing cognitive neuroscience since many of the essays feature results and ideas from neuroscience. -- Edward E. Smith, Professor of Psychology, University of Michigan This comprehensive collection brings together all the materials needed for an upper division or graduate level course on consciousness. It should greatly enhance both the teaching and the study of this most important and puzzling phenomenon. -- Patricia Kitcher, Professor and Chair, Department of Philosophy, University of California

About the Author

Ned Block is Silver Professor of Philosophy and Psychology at New York University and was Chair of the Philosophy Program at MIT from 1990 to 1995. He is a coeditor of The Nature of Consciousness: Philosophical Debates (MIT Press, 1997). Owen Flanagan is James B. Duke Professor of Philosophy at Duke University. He is the author of Consciousness Reconsidered and The Really Hard Problem: Meaning in a Material World, both published by the MIT Press, and other books. Guven Guzeldere is Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Assistant Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Duke University. He is coeditor (with Ned Block and Owen Flanagan) of The Nature of Consciousness: Philosophical and Scientific Debates (MIT Press, 1998) and a founding associate editor of Psyche: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Consciousness.

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