The contents of consciousness: A neuropsychological conjecture

Behavioral and Brain Sciences 18 (4):659-76 (1995)
Drawing on previous models of anxiety, intermediate memory, the positive symptoms of schizophrenia, and goal-directed behaviour, a neuropsychological hypothesis is proposed for the generation of the contents of consciousness. It is suggested that these correspond to the outputs of a comparator that, on a moment-by-moment basis, compares the current state of the organism's perceptual world with a predicted state. An outline is given of the information-processing functions of the comparator system and of the neural systems which mediate them. The hypothesis appears to be able to account for a number of key features of the contents of consciousness. However, it is argued that neitherthis nor any existing comparable hypothesis is yet able to explain why the brain should generate conscious experience of any kind at all
Keywords anxiety   comparator   consciousnes   contents of consciousness   schizophrenia   septohippocampal system
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1017/S0140525X00040395
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 16,667
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
John Searle (1983). Intentionality. Oxford University Press.

View all 75 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
J. David Smith (2009). The Study of Animal Metacognition. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 13 (9):389-396.
E. Roy John (2001). A Field Theory of Consciousness. Consciousness and Cognition 10 (2):184-213.
P. Cicogna & M. Bosinelli (2001). Consciousness During Dreams. Consciousness and Cognition 10 (1):26-41.

View all 17 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

75 ( #45,186 of 1,726,249 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

5 ( #147,227 of 1,726,249 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.